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Why Learning Games Succeed Where Traditional Training Fails

Why Learning Games Succeed Where Traditional Training Fails | Educational ICT | Scoop.it
Why is everyone always picking on traditional training? And what makes learning games so special anyway? It’s not that we dislike traditional training, we just think there are a lot more benefits to
Andrew Ferguson's insight:
Games based learning is an area which increasingly invokes great conversation in educational circles. This article presents some practical reasons as to why learning through games, where explicit learning outcomes are defined, is a viable alternative to traditional training. Increasingly, the role of teachers is being re-imagined through gaming and it is unsurprising that teachers may question how use of games aligns with specific elements of the curriculum. A key consideration in this area is how to support teachers who may be reluctant to adopt video games as a learning tool due to a lack of expertise and questions around learning outcomes. There is no question that curriculum based games have several advantages over more traditional teaching methods. This article argues quite effectively that games are well equipped to provide interest and motivation to learn, respond to situations using complex reasoning and imagination as well as provide instant feedback to users on their progress. It is probably important to acknowledge that this type of gaming may be somewhat removed from the more popular games with my students. In games such as Minecraft (which they inform me is 'hot' at the moment) they are immersed in a virtual world which requires them to develop various cognitive processes, problem solving skills and communication yet is seemingly void of prescribed academic disciplinary knowledge. I am excited to work in a era where gamed are on the educational agenda. I am genuinely excited about the potential of games based learning. 
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School's Letter Reminds Students That They Are More Than Just Test Scores

School's Letter Reminds Students That They Are More Than Just Test Scores | Educational ICT | Scoop.it

A British school wants its students to know that they are amazing and intelligent, regardless of their test scores.

Andrew Ferguson's insight:

National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy, or NAPLAN) provide both schools and parents with information on student achievement against national averages as well as against the performance socio-economically ‘like-schools’ across the nation. In addition to the formal reports provided from the NAPLAN testing, the recent creation by the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority of the website ‘My School’, makes the results of these tests available for online. Such initiatives have been part of the plan to create greater transparency, accountability, fairness and to continue building “Australia’s capacity to provide a high quality of life” and “to compete in the global economy of knowledge and innovation”. 

 

Even though the desire to standardise what is an increasingly shifting environment is often criticised, reporting based on objective standards is commonly seen to be more effective at detecting ‘at risk’  students who require additional support or referral to a specialist. To be clear I am not opposed to standardised testing. I feel that a societies desire for students, regardless of socioeconomic status, race or disability, to meet common standards is a good thing. It is the importance placed on these results that concerns me. Students take four small tests once every couple of years from the results schools are pitted against each other in a statistical hocus-pocus that is an anathema to all thinking educators.


Schools are more than tests and results. This letter to students reminds us of this.

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