Serious Games for Self-Represented Litigants
Please RSVP at: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/2196384827408326413
Back in 2014, we thought self-represented parties could benefit from an online interactive
“serious game” simulating aspects of an actual legal proceeding. Games have proven to make a
positive impact on cognition and behavior because they are experiential learning environments
that allow users, through trial and retrial, to attain the necessary (virtual) experience to help
guide future action in reality.
Thanks to two grants from LSC’s Technology Initiative Grant Program, we’ve developed,
launched, and evaluated two games designed to help people without lawyers represent
themselves in court. RePresent, originally launched in 2015 and now in its second iteration,
prepares litigants for the basics of self-representation. It is available in Connecticut,
Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Maine. RePresent: Renter (2018) focuses on summary
process eviction proceedings, and is available in Connecticut and Maine. Both games are
available via native mobile phone apps, and through web browsers. You can learn more, and
access both games, at www.representgames.org.
Our most recent LSC-TIG grant included funds specified for an independent evaluation. That
effort, undertaken by Professor Jack Tsai of Yale University’s psychology department, concluded
that “the RePresent games have potential to have population- level effects on legal outcomes . .
. .” We now seek to introduce LSC-funded entities (and others) to the promise of serious games
in the legal aid space, and specifically to how organizations can use Northeastern’s StudyCrafter
platform to easily modify the games for their jurisdiction, or create entirely new games that
help close the access to justice gap. Our presentation will cover:
• The rise of serious games and their application to legal aid;
• The RePresent suite of games and Dr. Tsai’s evaluation of same;
• The StudyCrafter platform, and how to access and use it to modify either RePresent
game, or to build entirely new games.
Kathy Daniels, IT Administrator at Statewide Legal Services in Connecticut
Kate Frank, Website and Publications Manager at CTLawHelp.org
Jack Haycock, attorney at Pine Tree Legal Assistance
Eduardo Gonzalez, Access to Justice Tech Fellow at Georgetown Law School Institute for Technology Law & Policy and the Self-Represented Litigation Network