Basically, there are two types of learning: formal and informal. Formal occurs in classrooms where prescribed curriculums are led by teachers. Informal takes placeoutside the classroom using libraries, museums and nowadays, game based education on different platforms like mobiles, tablets and computers.
Good learning games are growing popular day by day. They have the potential to engage high order cognitive thinking for long periods of time. Kids love to play games because they are mentally satisfying and engaging. Some games inculcate the quality of persistence through following methods of trial and error.
The potential to deliver education through games is enormous. In 2008, around 170 million people in US alone, played video games and computer games. Games designed to achieve specific learning goals can be harnessed to create a community of well-motivated learners who are able to engage in and apply problem solving skills.
For instance, a growing base of game creating experts are utilizing design principles to enable medical students to hone and practice the right surgical techniques on virtual patients or skills to handle example cases of medical emergencies. Game based learning is thus highly motivating as well as ideal learning methods.
When training and education is dull, learners feel de-motivated. This means that learning does not take place. Learning in traditional sense often implied memorization. But now, it means acquiring of the thought process or skills to respond properly under pressure, when faced with different situations.
In the classroom, seldom do we learn how to think and act in face of real world challenges. In case of informal learning or game based learning, we are provided with interactive and motivating experiences that engage us actively in the learning process. Since many years, video game designers have been involved in producing games that enhance learning.
Effective applications of game based learning bring us to virtual environments that provide us with familiar and relevant experiences. Game based learning is motivational as we are able to quickly connect our learning content with its applicability in real life. Hence, game based learning companies are busy designing new and effective games.
An effective game base learning method leads us to work towards a goal. We can choose relevant actions and experience the results of those choices along the way. Some games help us learn by trial and error, especially since there are no major risks if we commit errors in the learning process. For instance, fire fighters can learn how to deal with emergencies without hurting themselves.
These are some aspects of the utility of game based learning in education.