When Will Educators Get Serious About Gaming (an article by Bruce Dixon)
Part 1 – Games Improve Learner Retention
This article isn’t actually about retention. It just got me thinking, I can still remember all the games I was asked to play in school.
- Math Blaster (5th grade)
- Oregon Trail (7th grade)
- Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing (7th grade)
- Social science behavior game (10th grade – not electronic)
Current, web-hosted, educational games:
What occurs to me is that there is a dramatic drop in game play when a learner reaches secondary school. Is this because games are more complication to program? If this is the case, why do we insist on them being electronic? Can’t non-computer games be just as engaging?
Part 2 – What’s it going to take to achieve game adoption?
This article actually questions why games haven’t been adopted more fully in education, if they prove to have such outstanding results.
Is it that gaming, by its very name, cannot be taken seriously by the wider education community, or indeed the wider community in general? Is it possible that gaming is only now starting to reach a level of “maturity” and sophistication from an affordable technology perspective, that it can finally provide what might be to be “serious opportunities for learning”? Or is it something that might be seen as driving what could be called subversive pedagogy?
Dixon concludes that change will not take place without a comprehensive strategy that addresses the challenge of cultural change.