Centered on teaching game-design and computer programming using industry-standard game-development software (Unity 3D), the project aims to create and implement a middle school computer science (CS) curriculum. The project will involve teacher professional development (PD), a collaboration between teachers and researchers to co-develop a curriculum, and research and evaluation to understand the outcomes from the design and implementation efforts.

The knowledge gained from this design and implementation will inform future game-design efforts in using more advanced software with industry and real-life acceptance and transferability. Second, data will be collected to examine the effectiveness of the hybrid, ongoing PD, and PLC efforts, and inform future CS professional learning opportunities that are similarly extensive, structured, and job-embedded.

Research and evaluation will be conducted on the (a) curriculum development, (b) teacher PD and professional learning communities (PLC), and (c) curriculum implementation processes. First, the curriculum will be built on previously established theoretical and practical frameworks and will be co-created with teachers. Unique to this project, however, game-design software used in industry will be used instead of block-based tools. This will help establish direct real-life relevance and reusable (syntactic) knowledge.