Be a Gamer, Save the World

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704590704576092460302990884.html?KEYWORDS=be+a+gamer+save+the+world

This article was in the Wall Street Journal a few days ago about the benefits of video games. [Editor’s note – this article is Jane McGonigal in her own words.] Throughout the course so far, Gee and others have argued that the problem solving nature of a good game are beneficial regardless of the actual content of the game. I think this article would agree with that concept; however, the author takes it one step further. She recognizes how videos games are an intrinsic part of modern society, noting that the number of hours world-wide gamers have spent on World of War Craft amounts to 5.93 million years. She then goes on to discuss notable studies that use video games for real life problems such as folding virtual proteins to help cure cancer or Alzheimer’s, or another game that allowed gamers to design and launch their own real world enterprises. She argues that games can be used to solve real life problems through careful design and programming. Already we have seen that games can help us with math, problem solving, flight simulation and several other skills, yet by continuing this trend video games will permeate many other aspects of life. I think that by carefully expanding video game s to more educational concepts, learning can be seen more as fun then actual work. Either way, the adoption of video games for education use will be interesting to keep an eye on in the coming years.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. matthewberk
    Jan 27, 2011 @ 11:14:57

    This is a cool article, and if Professor McGonigal, from the esteemed Hogwarts school, believes that video games are valuable to our learning and development, I’ll bet she’s right!

    Reply

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