A GAME-BASED APPROACH FOR TRAINING AND SUPPORTING YOUNG PEOPLE IN SOCIOPROFESSIONAL INTEGRATION IN A FRENCH UNIVERSITY
Context and objectives:
The societal challenge of the professional and social integration of young people with little or no qualifications (neets) is essential. Special devices have been created for them. So since 2002, Creators Groups have been developed in France with partnerships between Universities (IUT: University Institute of Technology), Local Missions (associations for helping young people in difficulty) and organizations of business creation, in order to help these young people to undertake an economic activity creation process and to obtain a Diploma of University of Business Creator (DUCA).
In this paper, we present the use of a specific game (Solutia) to support young people in their integration way in the Paris East area. We consider that a game situation may promote the empowerment of these young people and help them in their integration way developing their trust and self-esteem.
The game situation creates a potential space of thought, creativity and meaning. It helps young people to better understand the context and the specificities (opportunities and weaknesses) of their personal project and to develop it in a collective dynamics.
First we will present a “game situation” with the main modalities of the Solutia game and the context of the interactions between the young creators of economic activity.
In an information and communication approach, we consider a specific “game situation” to better understand the representations of these young people and their evolution. We position in a constructivist and research action perspective focusing on link (interactions) and meaning for action, using a qualitative methodology with specific tools of observations built with all the actors.
We are in a position of participant observation: animating both the game sessions between the young people and observing their reactions. These observations of “game situations” may be supported by video recordings.
These observations are completed by individual interviews before and after the game situations to try to understand the evolution of feelings and representations of implicated young people and their motivations to undertake.
Solutia Game is a good training mediator artifact to help to identify difficulties, to name them and to realize that they may be overpassed. It also shows that everybody meets problems in a project situation and may overpass them with relevant information and some help, when he has motivation to succeed. In addition to better knowledge about their position of project manager and entrepreneur, “game situations” also invite young people to adopt a position of "resource person", who can provide advice and solutions to others, as well as an awareness of the importance of external help to avoid the feeling of failure.
At the beginning of their six months training period, Solutia game helps them to better know all the other young people of this training project and cooperate with them, to begin to rebuild self-esteem and trust in themselves, in other people and in our society, integrating their personal project into a collective dynamics.
These types of interactive training are new in the French Universities. They correspond to their new challenge of Social Responsibility.