Setting up Classroom-based games

Information on how to set up games for class-based projects.

Setting up Classroom-based games

Postby rick.leeds » 29 Aug 2012, 12:46

This thread has been replaced by the rules here: http://www.playdiplomacy.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=660&t=43415#p748912

We are privileged to have a number of schools/universities use the site on which to play games as part teaching programmes. A while ago we instituted the SCHOOLS games, designed specifically for these types of class-based games. As we’ve gone along, we’ve found some issues (there have been some bugs linked to the ‘Teacher’ role which we’ve ironed out) with how the games are set up and the way students use the site. This thread aims to bring together all the information about SCHOOLS games and the ways in which we would like them to be used for class-based play.

1. How SCHOOLS games work.
The way SCHOOLS games work can be found in detail in a link at the end of this document; this is just a summary.
The games are 7-player games, with an additional 8th member with a non-playing role: the ‘Teacher’. The Teacher’s role is almost a Game Moderator role: all messages sent between players can be seen by the Teacher, the Teacher can send in-game messages to all powers and the Teacher has the ability to moderate the Public Press box – delete messages there. The only thing a Teacher can’t do is play.
The person who sets-up the game is automatically designated the Teacher for these games. This means that, for class-based games, the teacher of the class (or the person running the project) should be the one to create SCHOOLS games. (Of course, anyone on site can set-up a SCHOOLS game and they are used for mentoring players as well.)
All SCHOOLS games require a password to enter This password will stay in effect for the duration of the game so that, should a player drop from the game, only a player with the password can take over the position.

2. Naming the Games.
It would help the Mods if class-based games could be named appropriately: ideally, something along the lines of ‘Life Uni Game 1’. If you choose to give the games more interesting names then we ask that they all share the same name with a game number. This is simply because if a site Moderator sees games with an easily identifiable title when investigating something the game can be discounted from the investigation (we don’t investigate SCHOOLS games for cheating).

3. Accounts.
There are three ways accounts can be set up:
– by the teacher for the class,
- by the players themselves,
- with the assistance of Admin or Moderators.
It should be noted that each account requires its own, working email address, as all new accounts need to be verified before a new member can play on site.
(a) Account emails.
As mentioned above, all accounts require a working email for verification. It would help us a lot if players used their school email address to set-up their accounts. Again this is simply a matter of making the site Mods’ lives easier: if we see an account with ‘.edu’ at the end it will be easier to identify the player as a student. If a teacher chooses to ask the Administrators or Moderators to help with creating student accounts, we can assist in correctly naming the accounts for school-use-only, and create ALL the accounts so they all use the teacher's school e-mail address. This means that any communication will come to the teacher, not the student themselves, allowing the teacher to monitor any problems.
(b) Account Names.
It is better for class-based games if all accounts could follow the same naming model. Again, following the example given above for naming games, it would help if class-based accounts had the same format. This might be ‘LifeUniPlayer1’, ‘LifeUniTeam1’ or ‘LifeUni_Player’sname’. This, again, is aimed at making the site Mods’ task easier, readily identifying the player in a class-based game.
You are free to allow players to choose their own names, of course; however, this will have an effect upon them playing on site (see section following).
The site’s rules place some limit on what language is acceptable for usernames. Usernames should not contain:
- Sexually explicit language
- Racially abusive language
- Language which is abusive towards sexuality or gender
- Profanity.

4. Playing on the Wider Site.
In this section there are two types of account mentioned:
- official accounts: those created for involvement in class-based teaching projects, created using a school email address, and
- personal accounts: these are accounts created separately to play outside of class-based games OR accounts which have been created for class-based games but which teachers allow to be used outside of these games or which have no school identifier in the username.

(a) Students.
We hope that your students are enthusiastic enough to play more games of Dip on the wider site! There are some rules that should be noted with regard to this:
• If you allow players to use your ‘official’ usernames in games which are not part of the project, they will be subject to the House Rules (a link to these is provided below). Should the site need to take action against a player using these accounts, this may affect the use of the accounts in class-based games.
• If you have allowed students to name their own accounts (not containing school identification) to play in your class-based games then these will be viewed as personal accounts. This means students will NOT be allowed to create a second account to play their own games. It also means that, should the site need to take action against these accounts, it may affect the ability to use these accounts in class-based games.
• If you do not wish the ‘official’ accounts to be used in other games, students will be allowed to create personal accounts. These MUST NOT be from the school email address. It should also be noted that, in this case, the ‘official’ accounts MUST NOT appear in games which are not part of the project.
The site has a one member, one account policy. No member is allowed more than one personal account. The distinction between 'official' accounts - containing a school identifier - and personal accounts is an exception to this policy.
Given all of the above, we suggest that the best way to organise this would be:
1. Create official, class-based accounts to play ONLY in class games, using the school email address (if possible) with a school identifier in the name.
2. For playing on the wider site, students should set up personal accounts, using their own email and their own username.
(b) Teachers.
It may be that teachers would also like to operate official and personal accounts; for instance, teachers may already be playing on site and would rather students are not able to trace them on site! If this is the case, a teacher may create an official account - using a school email address and a school identifier in the username - as well as a personal account, subject to the same operating rules as above.

5. Site Rules.
It also makes sense to make students aware of the site’s House Rules. These can be found under the RULES tab on the home page (a summary), or at a link to the Forum provided at the end of this document, where they are given in full. This is especially important with regard to Multiple Accounts and, should they wish to play on the wider site, with regard to Meta-gaming (playing as a team, entering games with a preset alliance or carrying an alliance over from one game to another). Meta-gaming is NOT investigated in SCHOOLS games (we expect the Teacher to moderate these) or FRIENDS games but IS investigated in all RANKED or NO RANK games.

6. Public Press box – the Teacher’s role.
As mentioned above, the role of Teacher in a SCHOOLS game is a Game Moderator role. Part of this is to moderate the Public Press box.
Public Press can be seen by anyone on the site, whether part of the game or not. This means we have some rules about what is not acceptable in Public Press. These can be found in a link below, but as a summary:
- No abusive language – racist, sexist or comments abusive towards sexual orientation.
- No pornographic images, videos, gifs or links.
- No spamming.
- No posting of other’s personal information.
- No bullying.
Of course, you – as the Teacher – may have stricter rules than these.

7. Registering as a Teacher.
It would also help us if, should you be planning to run a series of class-based games, you registered with us as a teacher. This should be done by sending a Private Message (PM) to a Site Moderator or Administrator. The PM should state the educational establishment you are a member of, the format of usernames you expect to use and perhaps an email address we can contact you on should problems arise. You could also ask any questions you have about aspects of the site or these rules.

Useful Links:
House Rules - a description of the rules relating to how games are played.
Public Press Box Rules - a description of the what members are allowed to place in Public Press in a game.
Forum Guidelines - for players who visit the site's Forum.
SCHOOLS games info - how SCHOOLS games work.
Cyber-bullying - how the site deals with allegations of cyber-bullying.
"The Team" - A list of the Administrators & Global Moderators who can assist you with any questions or problems.
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Re: Setting up Classroom-based games

Postby DiplomacyDayM » 13 Oct 2014, 04:15

Hello

I figured out the game number and entered 7 student usernames (which I had previously created with passwords), but got this message:

"Seven unique student names that you have created must be specified to use the Fast Track game setup service"

What do I still need to do?

Sincerely,

Mike
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