Can Video Games Create a Positive Impact on Learning?
I believe trying out something new is good as long as it is beneficial and enables you to succeed in life. This is true in case of learning as well. As we can see, internet has drastically changed the way of imparting education that our previous generation have been used to; attending classes at specific days of the week, reading text books either purchased or borrowed from the campus library, and through sharing notes. Today, learning has gone hybrid, moving beyond the age old format of teaching within the classroom. Now anyone from anywhere can listen to your lectures and watch you speak via the internet and subsidiary multimedia elements. Moreover, the recent trend in online learning is introducing social games within classes. Children are addicted to video games and this addiction is compelling educators to launch the concept in classrooms too.
While many argue introducing games in the classroom will hamper studies, I support the majority views that are in favor of launching it in schools and at universities. Of course, we have to develop games keeping in mind the purpose, i.e., helping students to acquire knowledge quickly and in an interesting way so that they don't get bored. Many developers are also creating games that can be played on Smartphone's and such other mobile devices.
If you are still unsure whether games actually are a useful tool that enables children and teenagers to grasp important concepts in a range of subjects, then do have a look at some of the current facts.
In June 2012, the Institute of Play, a non-profit organization promoting game-based learning, has created a project - the "Games, Learning and Assessment Lab" (GLASS Lab), based on a $10.3 million grant received from the reputed MacArthur, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Electronic Arts, and the Entertainment Software Association. The project aims to create next-gen educational games for students as well as work on the existing ones to make them more learner-friendly.
According to a May 2012 publication, Zynga, the leading social gaming site and the maker of FarmVille, has teamed up with Grockit, an online social gaming service provider, to help teachers and tutors prepare students for a variety of tests using collaborative training, social charts, points, and achievements.
The U.S. President Obama has already appointed an expert adviser to frame the first national policy initiative on the role of video games in education, health, environment, and such numerous other areas.
In 2011, the University of Pennsylvania declared 2011-2012 as the "Year of Games". The University has started providing grants to all selected staff, students, and departments to create programming relevant to sciences, social culture, public policy, and such other significant fields.
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