The Games Are Coming, The Games Are Coming!

A revolution in education is taking place and I am not talking about the one being debated at many state houses across the country.  The real change is the marriage of gaming into online education platforms.  At the SXSW conference, Seth Priebatsch of SCVGR spoke about this very reality.  Education is ideally suited to incorporate gaming.  It have grades, divisions, tests, graduations, and scores.  Education should be the leader in partnering with the online gaming culture and yet it has missed the boat.  Why?  Education models are based on avoiding failing and discipline, two elements that are not inherent in most games.  What if you started school with zero ‘user’ points?  You accumulated points as you mastered different ‘levels’ or subjects.  At the end of the year there would be a dispersion of total points but remarkably nobody would be getting a D or even an F (the failure model), instead everyone would have progressed forward, some more than others but everyone has moved in a positive direction.  If you could carry your ‘ability’ forward to the next year, you would already have a virtual avatar with skills accumulated from previous grades.  Thing how hard it is to unsubscribe to a game when you already have so much sweet equity into the creation of a character and his/her attributes.  Badges, avatars, recognition, and access to the next level are already appearing in everything from the Khan Academy to RossettaStone courses.  It is not a matter of if, it is a matter of when gaming becomes embedded in education.

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