Playing the Game - Literacy, Learning, and Marvelous Minecraft: Transitioning to the Use of Minecraft in a Higher Education Teamwork and Leadership Course


Due to the recent COVID-19 pandemic, a medical university located in the Kingdom of Bahrain had its English foundation program teamwork and leadership course transition from face-to-face learning to an online environment. Although the interest in Minecraft was well in place before the COVID-19 pandemic, the educational disruption pushed it to replace the use of the physical MTa kits. MTa kits use experiential team development activities that require cooperation and creative strategies designed to develop interpersonal competencies such as teamwork, communication, leadership, and problem-solving skills. Minecraft was chosen as a solution to replace the MTa kits because both the MTa kits and Minecraft use components that require building strategies and can achieve nearly the same learning outcomes. The use of Minecraft required new literacies, including an array of multimodalities comprising of words, representation, visual symbols, diagrams, etc., that communicate particular specific meanings within Minecraft to allow the learner to develop into a productive member of the game culture and learn. The process of designing and implementing the course into the virtual world of Minecraft was both exciting and challenging. Learners needed to morph into the world of online game multimodal literacy while transitioning from face-to-face education to an online learning gaming environment. A discussion of how Minecraft was not only a solution to keep the teamwork and leadership course intact during the pandemic, but how Minecraft now became a permanent component in the course.


Sakinah A. Ismael
Student, Education Policy, Organization, and Leadership EdD, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Illinois, United States


Presentation Type

Paper Presentation in a Themed Session


Learning in Higher Education


Multimodal Literacy, Minecraft Education, MTa Kits, Teamwork and Leadership, COVID-19

Digital Media


Playing the Game: Literacy, Learning, and Marvelous Minecraft (pptx)