By Eric Klopfer
An outline of cellular studying video games that argues for the tutorial benefits of hand held video games over their big-screen opposite numbers.
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Additional resources for Augmented Learning: Research and Design of Mobile Educational Games
Similarly, players may need to test variations on these previous methods and devise and test ways to modify their strategies. Or players may need to try to understand how to avoid triggering the onslaught of killer robots when entering a particular room, by understanding the behavior of this species and how the robots communicate, react, and respond. These are all essential skills—transferring knowledge, testing hypotheses, and understanding complex systems—that one can learn through games. NESTA Futurelab in the United Kingdom has done some extensive work summarizing research in games in education.
One doesn’t need to look far to see where that negative view is coming from. The media is filled with coverage portraying video games as the source of malevolent content and behavior. This stereotypical portrayal of video games has become so deep-seated that many people don’t even know they hold this view. My family and I were recently visiting friends who had an elementary school-aged daughter, who I’ll call Neera. I saw that her parents had given Neera a computer, and it was placed at a low, small table to make it very accessible to her.
But when we get in front of the students, the word game goes much further. They can adapt what they already know about ‘‘playing’’ games and start plotting out strategies, incorporating what they know about collaboration and competition, and define their own goals with little instruction. They readily buy into the concept that these are games because they are indeed fun (by their own words and measures). Despite this label, I have yet to see these games cause any disruption of the kind that teachers fear, either with students or other teachers, which might interfere with the work in which they are engaged.