General

What is StudyCrafter?

StudyCrafter is a free playful platform where users can create, share, and play research projects to advance our understanding of human behavior. The platform has been developed to transform research and education as we know it. To learn more about StudyCrafter, see our About page.

Why is it called StudyCrafter?

Good question.

Is this actually used for scientific research?

The platform has been developed for education but also research, and the expectation is that through this platform new scientific contributions will be made. On our Wiki we will keep track of the scientific insights that the platform has made.

What is remixing?

We want to encourage collaboration and this collaboration is fostered by being able to easily copy and then modify someone else’s project.

How is StudyCrafter different from a game engine or interactive fiction tools?

It differs with its specific purpose to contribute to the next generation of conducting and teaching social and behavioral science. You can, however, use it to make games or interactive stories.

Who created StudyCrafter?

StudyCrafter is developed and maintained by the Northeastern Game Studio at Northeastern University.

How can I be guaranteed that my projects will not be deleted?

We backup each project twice on our servers, but if you want to be completely guaranteed, it is best that you download your project.

Usage

Is StudyCrafter open source?

No. The platform is still in initial development (alpha phase) and we are exploring what StudyCrafter is and can become. If you want to contribute, feel free to send an email to info@studycrafter.com.

Can I work together on a project?

Sort of. You cannot work together on the same project but you can remix each other’s work. You can also create a Community Lab where you can work together on a particular subject.

Can I use the project editor offline?

Yes. You can download the offline editor here. You can upload offline projects with your account or host them yourself. See our Wiki for more information on the offline editor.

Do you need to download the software or install anything?

No. The editor is online and projects – once published – will each have their own webpage.

Can I use StudyCrafter for free?

Yes. The platform is 100% free to use.

How do I get started with StudyCrafter?

Check out our Wiki to see how to get started. Or just dive right into our editor.

Is it easy to use StudyCrafter?

Yes. It was designed to make it easy for anyone to perform research.

Privacy Policy

Is StudyCrafter compliant with local and federal data privacy laws?

We care deeply about the privacy of our users. We have in place physical and electronic procedures to protect the information we collect. Although we are not in a position to offer contractual guarantees with each entity that uses this free platform, we are in compliance with all federal laws that are applicable to Northeastern University, a 501(c)(3) organization and the entity that created and maintains StudyCrafter.

Can the StudyCrafter team view private or unlisted projects?

Yes. The StudyCrafter Team is responsible for moderating the platform, and has access to all content (projects and data). In addition, for our research purposes the team will aggregate all data to understand what projects users made and how users are engaged with projects. However, the team will not remix private or unlisted data or perform project specific analyses without your permission. If you prefer to work on projects in complete privacy, you can use the offline editor and host projects yourself.

Does the StudyCrafter team sell or rent information about users to anyone?

No. In addition, we collect all information anonymously (without username or references to social media profiles).

What data is collected from people when they play?

What data is collected is contingent on each project. However, generally, all player actions are anonymously collected with a timestamp.

What data is collected from people while they use the website?

We collect data on all the activities users perform on the website. This data will help us improve the website and, in particular, provides us a better understanding of how different users make use of StudyCrafter. In the near future, we will include statistics on your activities and provide recommendations for what to play and create based on how you use the platform.

What information do you ask for during account registration?

During the registration process, you have the option to provide us with demographic information (age, citizenship, gender, etc.) and preferences (games, topics). This information is not disclosed on your profile unless you choose to. We collect this information for research purposes but also to improve your experience in using the platform. We do not sell, rent, or otherwise distribute information about our users to anyone.

Accounts

How do I delete my account?

Log in and then select “Account Settings.” Then select “I want to delete my account.” Please note that deleting your account does not delete your projects or the collected data.

What information can I share on/with my account?

It is up to you what is displayed on your account, but be careful in sharing your real name and personal contact information, such as your email, a personal website, or your social media accounts. Sharing phone numbers and physical addresses is not allowed per our policy. Please report anyone who does that.

Can I change my username?

No. If you really need to, you can make a new account, but you will have to copy your projects over on your own.

Is it okay to have more than one person logged into an account?

This is discouraged, because the website and editor can easily get confused when more than one person is logged into the same account.

Can I have more than one account?

Yes. Keep in mind that you cannot break any of the Community Guidelines.

How do I change my email address or other profile details?

Log in to your account and then choose “account settings.” It provides you an opportunity to change your profile settings.

How do I change my password?

Log in to your account and then choose “account settings.” It provides you an opportunity to change your password.

I forgot my password, how can I reset it?

Enter your username or email address on the password reset page. You will receive an email with a link to reset your password.

Can I publish projects without an account?

No. You can play with the editor and participate in research without account, but you cannot publish projects.

Research

How can I target a specific sample population such as only females or people between 30 and 40 years of age?

There are three options: 1) You can state the participation requirement in the project description and ask these questions at the beginning of a project for confirmation. You can then filter people who did not satisfy your requirements; 2) You can filter registered users who were willing to share their demographics; or 3) You can create an unlisted project and invite a preselected group of people to play.

How do I prevent the same people from participating in my research more than once?

With guest accounts this cannot be prevented, which is why we recommend analyzing data with and without guests. For registered participants the data will tell you if someone participated more than once and you can exclude their other attempts.

How can I work together with multiple collaborators?

You can create a Community Lab, which is a dedicated website for studycrafters that have a similar passion or goal.

Is it possible to not share data before publication?

Yes. Similar to the accessibility of the project itself, you can set data sharing to private, unlisted, or public. Per our Community Guidelines, we request that users share their data once the project is completed.

Is it possible to create private projects?

Yes. Similar to YouTube you can publish projects as public, unlisted, or private. With public everyone has access; with unlisted only users who receive the link; and with private only you can access it. The private option is a possibility if you want to run experiments in a traditional physical laboratory setting. Per our Community Guidelines we request that users share their project once it is completed.

Can I use StudyCrafter with Amazon Mechanical Turk or other paid crowdsourcing services?

No. We are considering this for a future release. You may be able to use a workaround of having Mechanical Turkers send a unique code to you.

Can I give participants a remuneration for their contribution?

Sort of. Currently, payments are not facilitated through StudyCrafter. Each session generates a unique code and we recommend that you ask participants to send this code to you and process their remuneration yourself.

Do I need IRB approval to publish results from StudyCrafter in official academic outlets?

You will have to consult your IRB office for this question, and the specific academic outlet. We will share best practices and material on our Wiki.

Education

Can I request data about my students’ behavior on the platform?

No. As per our privacy policy, we do not share any data from users. You can, however, look at the usage statistics of registered users on their profile.

How do I prevent plagiarism so that students can’t simply remix projects and submit them as their own work?

Projects have a remix history with a description of the changes. Make students aware of this transparency and use this remix history to assess if students put in enough effort.

Can I sign up my students in bulk?

No. This feature is currently not available. Each student will have to sign up individually.

How can I organize and monitor student projects?

Teachers can create a Community Lab and request their students to sign up for this lab.

How can I use this for education?

There are several opportunities, from letting students experience classical experiments to teaching them how to conduct research. We discuss these opportunities in detail at our Education page.

Can I use this to teach in K-12?

Currently, the platform is restricted to users 18 years or older. However, we are considering how we can make this work for K-12 education. In the meantime, you can use the offline editor.

Can I use this to teach in higher education?

Yes. In fact, StudyCrafter has been developed to transform current research methods education and we are looking for partners to implement it in the classroom to evaluate its educational impact. See our Education page.

Ownership/Permissions

May I use StudyCrafter materials, images, sounds, or projects for other purposes?

Yes. All materials made available on the StudyCrafter website are available under the CC-BY-SA 2.0 License.

Can I sell my StudyCrafter projects?

Yes. Your project is your creation. Keep in mind that once you publish your project, everyone is free to remix and use it as per the terms of the CC-BY-SA 2.0 License. So if you intend to sell your project, you may want to use the offline editor.

Can I upload videos of using StudyCrafter?

Yes. You have permission for this provided that you state that the platform is developed and maintained by Northeastern Game studio at Northeastern University. If you are making tutorials on how to use StudyCrafter, feel free to send an email to info@studycrafter.com and we may include it on our Wiki.

Can I use StudyCrafter for grant proposals?

Yes. You are free to propose using this platform for your work provided that you attribute the platform accordingly. The team is also open for research collaborations. See our Research page.

Can I include StudyCrafter material in publications, brochures, and news articles?

Yes. You can write whatever you want in whatever format about StudyCrafter. You may create your own screenshots / images of StudyCrafter, and should consider them to be licensed under the CC-BY-SA 2.0 License. We also have material ready to use at our Press page.

Can I present StudyCrafter at a conference?

Yes. You have permission for this provided that you clearly state that the platform is developed and maintained by Northeastern Game studio at Northeastern University. See our Press page.

Can I access data from projects?

Only if you have contributed to a project and only if a project is public. If you feel your contribution is biased, please note this after completing the project.

Who owns StudyCrafter data?

You also own what you gather. However, here too keep in mind that all online projects (private, unlisted, or public) are licensed under the CC-BY-SA 2.0 License. Keep also in mind that per our open sharing and data policy completed projects need to make their data public.

Who owns StudyCrafter projects?

The creators are the owners, so you own what you made. Keep in mind that all online projects (private, unlisted, or public) are licensed under the CC-BY-SA 2.0 License and that everyone is able to remix public projects. Keep also in mind that per our open sharing and data policy completed projects need to be made public.

Types of Projects

Can I build bots or include AI systems in projects?

Once the API is ready this will become possible. We anticipate in the future that the platform offers various standard bots.

Can I create games with this?

Yes, especially narrative-driven types of games. In addition, the platform’s capability for experimentation allows for A/B testing or the development of design experiments.

Can I create gamified surveys?

Yes. Although it has been developed for creating experiments, you can create non-experimental scenarios where you can elicit survey responses. See our About page.

Can I simulate complex systems that calculate player responses?

Sort of. With StudyCrafter you are limited with our math functions and the decision tree logic. It would be better to use an API to hook up a simulation model to StudyCrafter.

Can I make multiplayer experiments?

No. Currently, the platform only supports single player projects. We are considering enabling synchronous and asynchronous play in the future.

Features

Can I integrate experiments on my own website?

Yes. You can embed experiments by clicking on the <> icon for each experiment.

Can I analyze data with StudyCrafter?

No. At the moment the platform only provides the opportunity to view descriptive statistics. For further analyses you will need to use other software, such as R. We offer a number of templates for analysis on our Wiki.

Can I import real data such as Twitter feeds?

We are in the process of creating an API and that would be one step away from allowing integration of real data into scenarios.

Can I insert videos?

No. It is a feature we are considering for a future release.

Can I make 3D scenarios?

No. It has been purposely developed as a 2D platform. This makes it easier to add new art assets and create scenarios.

Can I use my own art assets?

No. Yes. Make sure your art assets abide by our Community Guidelines and Terms of Use, and do not infringe any copyright according to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).

Contributing

Can I donate to StudyCrafter?

Not yet. However, if you wish to donate in order to include specific features or art assets, send an email to info@studycrafter.com.

Can I become a developer for StudyCrafter?

Yes. Send an email to info@studycrafter.com with a resume and explanation of what you would like to do.

Can I create art assets for StudyCrafter?

Yes. Put your art assets on our info@studycrafter.com. We may include them in future builds and give you credit.

How can I contribute to StudyCrafter?

The simplest way is to use it! Please let us know about your experience on our Forum. Your feedback will help us to make the experience better. We also offer technical support to our early users.