Wednesday 6th August 2008/… Edinburgh Interactive Festival this morning announced a new screening session by publishing, research and events organisation Handheld Learning, entitled‘Gaming in Education, which will look at the ways in which commercially released games technology and titles are successfully being used in classrooms.

The session features a number of school teachers and leading education practitioners who are actively using off-the-shelf games and gaming technologies, e.g. Nintendo DS, Wii, PlayStation3 to achieve powerful learning experiences from primary to secondary education in and out of the school. It will urge developers NOT to start designing games for schools but to stick to what they do best, create compelling interactive entertainment. A definite coup for the festival, this is the first time a major UK games event has featured an education morning such as this. The session, which is free to the general public as well as EIF audience, takes place on the morning of Tuesday 12th August.

An earlier, 30-minute session, entitled‘Too Cool For School– A New Look at Games in Education’, is also scheduled in the conference programme for Monday 11th August, presented by Handheld Learning’s managing director, Graham Brown-Martin and Derek Robertson.

The duo will explain how "Serious Games" which have looked for the door marked "ENTRY" for the past few years are all but dead in the schools and young learners sector and how, generally speaking, educators are designing inferior games that children and young people just don't want to play. They’ll argue that worthiness and lessons are spotted a mile off by the young who are highly media literate and whose expectations are driven by the high budget, high production values of the games, film and television industries.

Managing director at Handheld Learning, Graham Brown-Martin, said:“Handheld Learning is delighted to be hosting these session's at the Edinburgh Interactive Festival to demonstrate how games and consoles are being used to improve learning and teaching practice in the classroom.”

About Edinburgh Interactive Festival 2008

Now celebrating its sixth year, the Edinburgh Interactive Festival is powered up to showcase the continued popularity, growth and influence of video games. And this year, the Interactive Festival is more synchronised with the world famous Edinburgh Festival than ever, appealing to the press, public and professionals from film, television and interactive media backgrounds alike, offering a bigger event for delegates, more consumer focusing– an overall spectacle for all.

New to Interactive Festival 2008 will be Features, Exhibition and Recruitment areas specifically tailored to cater for the public - allowing them access to the latest games and job opportunities in games.

As ever, the three-day Interactive Festival wouldn’t be complete without the cornerstones of conferences, keynotes, panel sessions, debates, games screenings and even more people than ever jostling to get through the doors.

Edinburgh Interactive Festival 2008

Edinburgh International Conference Centre

150 Morrison Street, Edinburgh EH3 8EE


Sunday 10th August

Game Screenings

Dare ProtoPlay

Public games area and retail site

Monday 11th August

EIF Conference

Game Screenings

Dare ProtoPlay

Public games area and retail site

Conference Networking event

Tuesday 12th August

EIF Conference

Game Screenings

Dare ProtoPlay

Public games area and retail site

Digital Interactive Symposium

Edinburgh Interactive Festival will also play host to the Digital Interactive Symposium, the games event aimed at academics and games industry professionals. It takes place on the afternoon of Tuesday 12th August.

Registration is open now at www.edinburghinteractivefestival.com

There is also a Facebook Group in 2008 at http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=12251081247

Edinburgh Interactive Festival 2008 registration details:

Full delegate pass -£149 (ex VAT)

Scottish based developers and companies -£99 (ex VAT)

Students -£75 (ex VAT)

Delegates can also register for the Digital Interactive Symposium.

You can see more of Edinburgh Interactive Festival 2007 at http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=YktZnm_eRlQ

Edinburgh Interactive Festival has also forged a number of key relationships with partners and sponsors that will be announced shortly.

If you are interested in getting involved with Edinburgh Interactive Festival 2008– through partnerships, sponsorship, the Friends of the Festival programme or simply to find out more about the commercial opportunities at EIF 2008, please contact Sales and Sponsorship manager, Jodie Holdway: Tel +44 (0) 1462 456780 ; jodie.holdway@bhpr.co.uk. For press information please contact PR Manager, Sarah Hartland: Tel +44 (0) 1462 456780; sarah.hartland@bhpr.co.uk.

Editor Note:


The Edinburgh Interactive Festival is managed by a committee drawn from all areas of the games industry, including publishers, developers and the two industry trade bodies: The Independent Game Developers Association (TIGA) www.tiga.org and the Entertainment&Leisure Software Publishers Association (ELSPA) www.elspa.com.

About Handheld Learning

Handheld Learning is a publishing, research and events organisation with a focus on learning and teaching practice enhanced by the use of mobile and ubiquitous technologies. The organisation’s vision is that the technologies that are becoming increasingly commonplace within the everyday lives of many people will also be used for powerful learning experiences both in and outside the traditional education environment.

These technologies range from mobile phones to games consoles, low cost laptops to media players, social media platforms to media sharing networks and more in a world where learners are becoming more connected.

The organisation was formed in 2004 by Graham Brown-Martin who had envisaged the use of mobile computing devices for learning by children since the mid-1980s when one of his companies was awarded a government grant to develop one. Our active shareholders include the former Chairman of Sony Europe and President of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe, Chris Deering, Sega Europe's former Chairman and deputy Managing Director, Frank Herman, Virgin Interactive Entertainments former President, Tim Chaney and renowned visionary educationalist, Professor Stephen Heppell.

Games PressGames Press is the leading online resource for games journalists. Used daily by magazines, newspapers, TV, radio, online media and retailers worldwide, it offers a vast, constantly updated archive of press releases and assets, and is the simplest and most cost-effective way for PR professionals to reach the widest possible audience. Registration for the site and the Games Press email digest is available, to the trade only, at www.gamespress.com.