Virtual worlds present frontiers of promise for the ever evolving venture of pedagogical development, trial and embracement. Of late there have been large pushes into these worlds in terms of health-based education for students and early practitioners. Virtual worlds seem to be the next logical jump into nursing education and can offer a range of simulation benefits. But these worlds do not appeal to all students, can be complex and expensive to develop and interact within. Other game-like avenues exist though and have not been explored thoroughly enough to date. Such genres like puzzles games, management style games and surprisingly first person shooters already have titles and game mechanics which have been somewhat adapted to nursing education but could easily be more thought out and developed to suit. This paper outlines the two major gaming audience types to be considered and then explores a range of options for nursing education beyond virtual worlds.
Immunology is a complex field requiring rapid memorisation of numerous components. An indepth understanding of cellular and molecular biology is required before even moderately advanced concepts can be taught. We sought methods that actively engage students and help develop new knowledge and consolidate existing concepts to support lectures. We created an interactive and entertaining prototype immunology computer game as a tool for learning and revision, with the ability to interactively cover course content outside of class that modern learners expect. Our prototype appears to be a successful study aid when used additionally to attendance at lectures. We seek to continue the development of the game in a higher education context, but also produce a modified version for a secondary school context, in an effort to raise the profile of this key health area and promote learning for the future through the study of the sciences prior to students entering higher education.