Gaming, Animation, Modeling, and Simulation Lab at RU


The purpose of the Games, Animation, Modeling and Simulation (GAMeS) Lab at Radford University is to design interactive mobile games and study the impact of these products on student engagement and learning. With funding from the National Science Foundation and the Virginia Department of Education, the GAMeS Lab designs and implements Standards of Learning (SOLs) aligned games for participating schools in rural, southwestern Virginia. In addition, the GAMeS Lab collaborates with participating teachers to determine how best to integrate these games within the existing curricula.  Within a mixed methods design-based research project, the GAMeS Lab conducts qualitative case studies within participating schools to document the affordances and limitations of the GAMeS Lab products from the student and teacher perspective.

What is the GAMeS Lab?


What products are produced in the GAMeS Lab?

Augmented Reality (AR) curricula: AR uses handheld computers and GPS receivers to create simulations or games, which are played in a real physical space, such as a school playground. The real physical space is augmented with a layer of superimposed digital media (i.e., video, photos, text), creating a learning environment that the students explore to solve various mysteries and problems. Click here for a complete description of the Radford Outdoor Augmented Reality (ROAR) Project.

Interested in Working with the GAMeS Lab at RU? Email Matt Dunleavy at

iPod Touch games: The second component of the GAMeS Lab is the design and implementation of SOL-aligned iPod Touch applications within the iLearn project. Building upon the work from the Learning without Boundaries project, the iLearn project develops, implements and researches iPod Touch applications, which target high need fundamental knowledge in core content areas. The objective of the iLearn project is to meet the specific needs of rural, southwestern Virginia’s students with engaging, multimedia games, which foster and scaffold student-directed learning for all learners within and beyond the regular school day. The iLearn project has a successful track record in designing games placing 2nd and 3rd place in the 2009 Virginia Mobile Learning Apps Development Challenge. Click here for a complete description of the iLearn Project.

This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. DRL-0822302.

The ROAR project is collaborating with the Learning without Boundaries project sponsored by the Governor’s Productivity Investment Fund Project with the Virginia Department of Education.