Election Lab

Data literacy for civics

Dice rolls in Election Lab represent uncertainty in polling. Here the red player has rolled 4, 4, 3, and 2.
Election Lab board game closeup
Play Like a President

Swing States

You take on the role of campaign strategist with only a few weeks before the election for the next U.S. President.
Through game play, you will discover the importance of key swing states like Pennsylvania, Ohio or Florida to the campaigns—and you will never see a presidential election the same way again.
Elections change through time: each map is different. The strategies change too. Play them all, and be the smartest person in the room on election night.

Electoral College Confusion

Every four years, searches for “Electoral College” peak on the Wednesday after Election Day. In a close election, the world wonders, will the Electoral Vote agree with the popular vote?
This convoluted system has reliably produced a new president, except on four occasions where it threw the country into crisis.


Test Your Strategy

You may debate why the United States still has an Electoral College to elect its president, but the fact remains, that campaigns win or lose by their ability to win votes in the states that count.
Play Election Lab, and see how campaigns view the electoral map, and use the game mechanic of the Electoral College to win.

Every 4 years, the search term "Electoral College" spikes, as Americans look for information on how they elect their president. This search term has a sharp peak every Wednesday, the day after the election.


Swing-state Strategy Game

Three Ways to Play

Election Lab Online

Play on your smartphone, Chromebook, or other digital device. Optimized for classroom play.

Election Lab Online 2024

4-Player Board Game

These high-quality board games are printed on demand, and shipped to you from the Game Crafter.

Election Lab board game

Classroom Sets

These high-quality board games are printed on demand, and shipped to you from the Game Crafter.

Election Lab classroom set
Election Lab classroom set
Attendees of the Orange County CUE try out the Election Lab classroom set
Data-informed learning game

Connecting Opinion Polls to Election Outcomes

The Model

Elections with two major parties, where the winner takes all, follow a well-defined curve.

Polling & Probability

This S-shaped curve can be used to look up the probability of winning, based on the current vote share in the opinion polls.

Dice Probability

Dice match-ups in Election Lab closely model this logistic function.

In this case, rolling 5 dice against your opponent’s 4 dice equals a 0.74 probability of winning.

Election Lab is an interactive game on presidential elections and data literacy funded by the U. S. Department of Education.

Pre-order Election Lab Online and Save 40%

Election Lab Online will allow you to play the 2024 election year in your classroom, with the digital devices you already have. It will launch in April, 2024.

Pre-order now to save 40% off the retail price.

The regular price will be $99. Your price will be $59.40.