Gaming as an Educational Tool

Tony Wan recently moderated a panel called Technology in Education: How Will it Change the Game? organized by the Churchill club. Wan would like to see the gap between general games and educational games close, and asks the panel questions to determine their thoughts.

Here’s what they said:

Noah Wardrip-Fruin (Associate Professor of Computer Science, UC Santa Cruz & Co-director, Expressive Intelligence Studio):

Noah has seen through his students that they are very motivated by making games.He feels it is important that people be able to step back and learn how to critique the systems that are being used. In an effort to expand gaming beyond the mathematical and scientific realms, Noah has just released a game called “Prom Week,” which teaches about bullying and being a good stranger.

When asked about the pitfalls and misconceptions related to gamification, he responded that the heart of games is play and not points, levels, and badges. Noah is interested in gamification to the extent that we re-think the core activity of gaming to focus on the aspect of play, which he calls “playification.”