Open for Trading - ITS Rebuilds SOM Stock Trading Game

June 13, 2019

Three decades ago, Yale School of Management (SOM) professor and renowned finance scholar, Roger Ibbotson, designed a unique Stock Market Game. This game consisted of playing cards, paper money, color-coded securities, and a mock trading floor. Introduced to Yale SOM students in 1984, the game became a staple of the integrated core curriculum, and specifically, the first-year “Investor” course. It has also been used in undergraduate economics courses within Yale-providing a fun and effective introduction to stock trading concepts and mechanics.

In 2013, the Stock Market Game transformed into an online game, so that students could play from any location. The Student and Academic Support Systems team supported this online edition for several years. SOM was interested in extending the game for use outside of Yale and wanted to see if it was possible to run multiple games simultaneously. They worked with the Web Technologies team, who rewrote the game using Ruby on Rails, to meet those goals.

“We’re so thrilled with how this game has turned out,” Julie Hawthorne, Business Development Manager for the Case Research and Development Team at SOM said of the experience working with ITS. “Both the game itself and the administration portions are running really smoothly. We recently piloted the game with a group of staff and students from the Yale Program on Financial Security and they really enjoyed it! They kept talking about their strategies long after the game was over. It’s a testament to not only the effectiveness of the game itself, but also to the quality of the work by ITS.”

The project took place over an eight-month period and was led by Senior Digital Producer Dana Lipnickas, with Heather White, Oren Kanner, Harry Shyket, Matt Coshal, Rebecca Schneider, and Ashvin Pradhan-Shenoy leading the user experience and development. Pre-project analysis was led by Kate Hathaway and Ismail Orabi from the Student and Academic Support Systems team.

The Stock Trading Game (STG) was pre-released to a group of 20 Executive Master of Business Administration students on Friday, April 26 at SOM. Members from the project team observed the game play and recorded their observations. STG was then opened to the public in June of 2019.

This game rebuild was one of the most complex web application projects completed by the User Experience and Application Development teams. The result is an application that not only provides a better user experience, but a more stable environment.

Thank you to everyone who helped make this launch possible!