I chose to study at NUI Galway for a number of different reasons. Funnily enough I had completed my undergraduate and Masters there already, albeit in different departments. The 260 acre riverside campus boasts all of the resources that I sought in order to complete my doctorate. The research-led University was established in 1845 and currently has 17,000 students with 2,400 staff.
My research focuses on the adoption of a Gesture-Based Game using Game-Based strategies in Mathematics, in doing so I built a number of games throughout the PhD and finally went on to develop the final game - Maths Mission - which adopted agile software processes to develop a game suitable for learning trigonometry, geometry, statistics and probability. The central research questions adopted in the study were as follows:
1. What are the key design elements of a Gesture-Based game and the key challenges for mathematics classroom implementation?
2. What is the potential for a Gesture-Based game to be used as a tool in the mathematics classroom?
3. What design features inform the creation of a Gesture-Based game in the mathematics classroom?
The process of developing a Gesture-Based Game was arduous and the end result was rewarding. The game implemented the WiiMote, Kinect and Playstation Move as well as 3D development of assets using 3DS Max. Having little to no experience of C# programming I learnt how to develop within Unity3D as well as develop prototypes outside of Unity3D. I have gone on to teach game development in Pulse College and also supervise students completing their Masters in Education as I blended a mix of 3D game development, technology, education and mathematics to produce the PhD.
To understand more about what games I have developed as well as my past work experience, check out my digital portfolio. I have early versions of games using MicroSoft XNA Game Studio 4.0 and Unity3D version 4.0 to 5.0. I also have experience dabbling in Unreal engine as well as teaching other subjects like statistics and working as a SharePoint developer, programmer analyst, android developer, C++ developer, Lead Software Engineer and tester in various industries from healthcare to eBooks and 5G networks.