E-Brock Bugs is a free online educational computer game that seeks to teach its users basic probability concepts in a personalized, interactive, animated and fun way. After selecting one of six possible in-game identities, players begin their journey to save Bug City from an evil band of Bullies who are controlled from afar by the all powerful Dr. P. To do this, players must work their way through six different districts, each of which entails a new environment, game and Bully. Along the way, players meet an interesting cast of characters, including their guide, Bugzy, and Smarty, the extremely intelligent bug who has developed the theory behind each Bully's scheme. E-Brock Bugs was designed and implemented keeping in mind the principles of an epistemic video game (Devlin, 2011), and with the goal that players will develop their ability to think mathematically, either independently or with the aid of prompts.
E-Brock Bugs©, created by Laura Broley (2013) with Chantal Buteau and Eric Muller, is a computer game with roots originating in Brock Bugs, a probabilistic board game created in early 1980s by Eric Muller.
E-Brock Bugs: for the mathematics teacher
"Statistical thinking will one day be as necessary for efficient citizenship as the ability to read and write."
"E-Brock Bugs could be a useful activity in High Schools to help students learn probability"
–from a survey study (n=61) involving Grade 12 students who used E-Brock Bugs as part of their data management (MDM4U) course load.
We have developed free resources for mathematics teachers:
What could be a game like for a player? Read the short article published in Ontario Mathematics Gazette 53(3), pp. 27-32, that describes the mathematical adventure of a virtual mathematics player: Broley, Buteau & Muller (2015).
The E-Brock Bugs computer game: what if becoming a (better) mathematician was a fun-filled adventure?
The Mathematics Scaffolding in E-Brock Bugs
E-Brock Bugs Teacher Document:Created to help teachers explore, understand and implement E-Brock Bugs in an effective and efficient way, this document contains a suggested exploration of the game, a detailed description of the mathematics involved, the didactical philosophy that guided the design, suggestions for implementation, and more.
E-Brock Bugs 'Unlocked' Teacher Version: In this version of E-Brock Bugs made specifically for teachers, you have immediate access to all sections necessary to gain a general understanding of the game, with the hope that you will be able to become acquainted with the game and plan your implementation in a much more efficient manner. Note that you will need to request a password to access this version of E-Brock Bugs. Click here to read the Software License Agreement and Disclaimer.
E-Brock Bugs 'Unlocked Finale' Classroom Version: In this version of E-Brock Bugs made specifically for teachers who implement the game in their classrooms, you have immediate access to the Finale of the game. Usually, one would need to save all six districts before coming to the Finale. But since one cannot save his or her game progress (not yet; hopefully in the future!), we make this version accessible to you to be shared with your students (make them play all other districts first using the regular E-Brock Bugs version!). Contact us to request a password to access this version of E-Brock Bugs. Be aware that this version will not invite the players to join the Hall of Fame even when defeating Dr. P; for this, one needs to save Bug City from the regular game. Click here to read the Software Licence Agreement and Disclaimer.