Blueprints MSU: The Game
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The transition between high school and college can be a daunting experience for many students. The problem with traditional college prep is that it is expensive because of the high demand on resources. It requires dedicated staff at every high school or a roaming team of specialists. The cost for implementing these programs are simply too high for most school systems. To mitigate costs, and to help improve the transition to college life, the Montana State University School of Computing has partnered with the College of Education to design and build a mobile application to help high school students answer important questions they may have and also to learn about the formal and informal societal roles and regulations of university life. Before the involvement of the School of Computing, the Blueprints team traveled to high schools in the area seeking questions and concerns about college. They catalogued approximately 450 unique questions. This project involves the review of the questions gathered during prior activities and produce a game that is able to answer them adequately. To create our game, we used GameMaker, a software suite designed for making games. Overall, the Blueprints game will address these formal and informal societal roles and help provide high school students a look into the complexities of university life and to remove the apprehension of living alone. In the future we plan to conduct studies on its effectiveness, then we will release it to high schools to get both their feedback, and hopefully their students: ready to tackle their university tenure.