Video games play a great role in learning and education and this has been a topic of debate from years. The educators have been discussing the influences and potentials of video games in education.
By playing a game, the students may learn new concepts and ideas. They can take on a different perspective with different options available to them. Students must be kept engaged in various activities that are helpful for them.
There are countless skills that can be learned through games like creativity, teamwork, etc. The students can develop a variety of connections with the content in the game and can also form positive memories of learning the new skills. A game allows students to quickly engage and transition back to the content they were working on.
Why only video games?
There are many people in this world who are giving a second thought to consider video games for education. Video games are being considered good for motivational learning. Fantasy, challenge and control are some of the techniques used in games and all these are considered as the cornerstones of motivational theory.
Teachers have been using motivational games for learning from years. The games are excited and challenging for the students and they are mostly to evoke the emotions and are likely to stick to the minds.
Video games help bridging the gap between the digital generations as the World Wide Web has a significant effect on the way the students think and learn. Using games for teaching is one of the ways to shift to an amazing learning format for the digital generation. The students will be more motivated to learn new skills using games. Competition and the urge to win the game also motivates the students as this gives quick feedback that enable the student to figure out the right track for themselves.
Why not traditional learning?
There are a number of reasons as to why the traditional learning is not a better option for students.
- By the time the students get their grades, it is very late to for them to do anything. They cannot correct their mistakes at that time.
- The grade value is not for the rewards of the learning process.
- The traditional way of learning does not helps the students to escape and do not even tell their lacking area. But the games allow the students to assess their knowledge and give them a chance to see where they are lacking.
It is the kind of learning that broadly refers to the use of video games to support teaching. Gamification is a new concept than game-based learning. It is the use of elements that are derived from the design of video-game that is deployed in a variety of contexts, rather than using individual games. It is an interesting topic and the rules & principles of gaming could make the children and young people eager to engage in most of the educational activities they used to find uninteresting or too difficult.
The game-based techniques encourage competition and self-improvement among students. The video game language can be used to reframe the traditional activities of the school.
Gaming can be positive for school going children
It is not just in-school gaming that is beneficial, but all gaming activities can be positive for children.
- Gaming is a social activity
- Improves thinking skills
- Improves reading skills
- Helps relieve stress
- Allows individualized learning
- Teach new technical skills
- Helps in cognitive development
- Make children happy
- Develop problem solving skills
- Increase leadership skills
Gaming for education
The educational gaming is $1.50 billion industry and it will increase to around $2.3 billion industry in the next five years.
Video games are getting involved with the education sector, but most of the parents are neglecting this as a good source of education for their children. But it is true that they are shaping the world of education and this will continue to happen in the coming years as well. SimCity game has been transferred to SimCityEdu which is completely inclined to teach the students about systems and environmental effect. Another game, GameGuru, teaches the students to predict the motion of particles based on Newtonian physics.
The schools will also replace the examinations as the teachers will realize the importance of game-based assessments. The children require deeper learning skills which is an important factor to consider.
Gaming impact on motivation and engagement
By encouraging and praising the student, the gaming software can develop confidence and motivation to continue with the given task. The students take the game learning as more enjoyable and exciting as compared to the traditional way of learning. The student does not get bored as in traditional learning. This allows retaining the memory easily and understanding the basic concepts.
When students play games, they want to play more and are more engaged. They pay more attention to the game till the time they reach the target. The game is able to change the state of the mind as the students become more aware of the relationship between the tasks and their real life.
The children feel a sense of humor while playing games as they are able to change their mood and are entertaining as well. Most of the traditional studies are quantitative in nature, but game-based learning is totally qualitative.
Motivation and engagement created by the game-based learning directly impacts on learning outcomes. Academic achievement measures do not completely measure the potential of children.
Gaming impact on student’s attitude to learning
Games are able to promote positive attitude towards learning. A cooperative structure is better than the competitive structure towards mathematical learning.
The learning attitude is beneficial for both the male and female students. It is expected that the innovative approach not only improves the student’s knowledge, but also foster their daily habits.
Gaming – The future of learning
The world continues to change how we communicate or entertain ourselves. Schools and parents may benefit from the growing world of video games.
Games help create an educational future for the children where they are deeply engaged and excited with what they are learning from them. They are able to develop new learning skills on their own. It is just the beginning to explore the potential of video games among children. It is the right time for the educators and the game developers also to build a new paradigm for the education of children. Beyond teaching, video games also offer information about how well a child is learning and improving the skills.
From all these trends it is quite obvious that Gamification and gaming will soon become an essential part of the education sector.
Keval Padia is a Founder & CEO of Nimblechapps, a fast-growing iphone game development company. The current innovation and updates of the field lures him to express his views and thoughts on certain topics.