Digital Games: Changing Education, One Raid at a Time.

Digital Games: Changing Education, One Raid at a Time.

Paul Pivec (CranberryBlue R & D, New Zealand) and Maja Pivec (FH JOANNEUM University of Applied Sciences, Austria)
Copyright: © 2011 |Pages: 18
DOI: 10.4018/ijgbl.2011010101
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Abstract

Digital Games are becoming a new form of interactive content and game playing provides an interactive and collaborative platform for learning purposes. Collaborative learning allows participants to produce new ideas as well as to exchange information, simplify problems, and resolve the tasks. Context based collaborative learning method is based on constructivist learning theory and guides the design of the effective learning environments. The constructivist design required for successful Game-Based Learning is discussed in this chapter and the model of recursive learning is discussed suggesting how Game-Based Learning (GBL) and how to maximize its affect. This chapter defines “Gameplay” and tables the perceptions of both players and teachers in the area of abilities learnt from playing digital games. Resources for implementing GBL are highlighted and the need for these is discussed. We conclude this chapter with design guidelines that will ensure effective learning outcomes are attained and suggest why these steps are necessary.
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Opening The Doors

Digital games have now been embraced by the academic research community (DiGRA, 2010) as a research topic, as well as discovered by the education sector as a highly interactive media that can support and foster learning, as opposed to being only for recreation or simply a waste of time – as playing games is still today often labeled (ENGAGE, 2010; ECGBL, 2010). However, many research publications focus on the negative effects of recreational video games (Gibbs & Roche, 1999; Anderson & Dill, 2000; Rollings & Morris, 2000), while others are found to suggest the positive side in the learning effects provided by Game-Based Learning. Druckman (1995) suggests that the learning effects from digital games are purely as a result of the effective motivation created by playing recreational games, and supports Malone’s (1981) theory; that the intrinsic motivation and the challenge created by video games is what improves the uptake of knowledge. Other researchers state that the drill and practice opportunity provided by video games improves learning (Wartella, 2002; Clark, 2004), yet some debate that there is no substantial proof that players learn from such games (Subrahmanyam et al., 2000), or that skills learnt from video games are transferred outside of this domain (Egenfeldt-Nielsen, 2005). Some publications also suggest that the research methodologies employed in many of the above studies are flawed (Egenfeldt-Nielsen, 2007; Pivec, 2009), adding weight to those who advocate that Game-Based Learning does not work and that games have no place in the field of education.

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