Ethical Tech Development with a Text-based Game: A Small-Scale Study

Grant Recipients

Marcel O'Gorman, English Language and Literature

Mark Hancock, Management Sciences

Jason Lajoie, Council for Responsible Information and Technology

Jennifer Whitson, Sociology and Legal Studies


This project will develop a game intended to prepare students to identify and engage with the social, cultural, and ethical implications of their research. The game will be built using Twine, a free and open-source tool for making text-based games and designed to raise critical awareness about the social and cultural implications of technological innovation. It will be trialed in three courses, its efficacy assessed using a pre- and post-survey describing if and how students recognize ethical issues in their research related to tech innovation, as well as the Defining Issues Test, Version 2 (DIT2), which is a verified measure to assess ethical development, and will eventually be made available to faculty at UWaterloo more broadly. The game will be developed with input from faculty at multiple departments and schools at the university in disciplines related to design, game studies, and research-creation. 


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