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Learning Games

What You Need to Know About Learning Games

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Learning Games Basics

When people are interested in learning, they learn. Creatively gaining and maintaining learners’ interest in learning content is the primary opportunity opened up by eLearning.

Gamification, or the presentation of material through learning games, is one of the most exciting technologies in eLearning. Learning games are a feature of eLearning that engage learners through creative themes such as mystery, exploration, points, scorecards, and leaderboards. Games can range from simple word puzzles or a knowledge check to fully developed video games.

A growing body of academic and organizational research supports the value and effectiveness of learning games in engaging learners, animating the learning process with interactivity and play. Learning games are rooted in constructivism, one of the leading fields in educational theory, which views learners as the creators of their own unique knowledge.

More About Learning Games

Game-based learning fosters a deep learning experience by infusing knowledge acquisition with emotion and subjective experience. This type of learning provides a safe environment for students to fail and experiment, which enhances comprehension, and learners are motivated by rewards systems and competitive elements. Learning games are shown to improve the speed of cognitive development and skills acquisition, especially when incorporated into complex process-based learning.

Learning games have become increasingly popular, especially in the corporate context, and the gamification market is expected to grow by over $17 billion USD in the next 3 years (Technavio).

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Possibilities: Balancing Learning and Play

There are as many ways to gamify eLearning content as there are to play. The creative opportunity created by incorporating learning games into eLearning material is to balance learning and fun.

Common approaches to this balance include adding quizzes and assignments into games. Learning games also often allow participants to compete against each other, which, for many, drives motivation and engagement. Competitive elements foster interactivity between learners, which is an asset in the virtual learning environment.

Learning games are particularly useful in scenario-based training, in which the learner becomes a character who is challenged to make decisions at key points. Story-based games are both fun and useful, and their use is growing within learning and development departments across industries.

Game Types and Applications

To save costs, many businesses invest in out-of-the-box solutions, or ready-made games, to train their employees. Larger companies invest in serious game development, often through an external eLearning agency.

The most innovative learning and development departments at large companies invest in either external eLearning agencies or in high-tech gamified authoring tools.

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Learning Games in the News

Best Kids Learning Games | Fatherly

From 'Simon Says' to 'Billy Joule': Students create electronic games from scratch | BrandeisNOW | Brandeis University

Learn Unreal Engine Game Development With This $35 Online Course Bundle | GameSpot

Hennepin Healthcare investigators study game to help people quit smoking | EurekAlert

Aztecs learn kickoff times, TV networks for most of 2022 football games | The San Diego Union-Tribune

At CAGR of 15.7% Global Language Learning Games Market Size & Share 2022 - 2028 | Projected to Surpass at USD 10049.9 Million: Industry Trends, Demand, Value, Analysis & Forecast Report by Zion Market Research | PR Newswire

Children who play more video games show greater gains in intelligence over time, study finds | PsyPost

The Best Games Have the Smartest Learning Curves | WIRED

Game On: Boosting Learning for Nursing Noobs | University of Nevada, Las Vegas | UNLV NewsCenter

Canes learn start time, TV info for early-season games. And here are big national games | Miami Herald

Playing Video Games Has an Unexpected Effect on Kids' IQ, Says New Study | ScienceAlert

'I'm still learning' - Mavericks' Luka Doncic reflective after scoring 40 points in Game 3 loss to Warriors | ESPN

Learning principles found in video games, UMass Boston professor says | Wicked Local

Best Educational Games for iOS and iPhone of 2022 May | BollyInside

Machine learning program for games inspires development of groundbreaking scientific tool | Argonne National Laboratory

15 Best Coding Games for Kids - Kids Programming Classes & Websites | Woman's Day

Training Quotes | #MINvNYC | Minnesota United FC

Gaming and learning skills blended in online series, BrainySpinach Math | Education Technology

Video games: our study suggests they boost intelligence in children | The Conversation

Riot Games invests in Aim Lab maker to build on training, mobile goals | The Washington Post

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