eSports for students

Male student playing in eSports tournament holding up a toy Stoke City FC mascot

‘Our students were desperate to join eSports tournaments using our college equipment.’

National Star students recently competed in the eSports FIFA 2020 tournament, playing against colleges and universities throughout the UK. In June 2021 we competed against fellow specialist colleges in our own select tournament hosted by eSports and Microsoft.
This was filmed by the BBC for news and regional bulletins.

Students used Microsoft adapted controllers with the Xboxes that provided additional flexibility, configurability and suitability compared to traditional controllers. National Star’s Assistive Technology team provided further modifications to the stock controllers to suit the needs of the individuals, which in turn provided greater gameplay engagement.

The IT team assisted by configuring the Xboxes and providing large screens for each student. The tournament was a huge success with our students, who are excited for more events and the opportunity to compete with other colleges.

Gaming provides more than just entertainment for students; it develops coordination using the technology platforms they love. Having successfully participated in the tournament, we are now addressing how to officially include Xbox and eSports as part of the curriculum, with the engagement and progress using these platforms quantified over the course of the academic cycle.

Technical considerations

  • Xbox and adaptive controller per player
  • Ad-hoc customisations per controller to suit the individual student
  • Large TV screen to enable greater gameplay
  • Guest network for Xbox is preferable due to firewall ports

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