Generations, Games,
& Education
Myths and Facts About the Potential of DGBL
Richard Van Eck, 2014
University of North Dako...
Reading
Comprehension
Permanent Now =
No Reflection
What Is Technology Doing?
Flynn Effect
Rewired
• The brain changes based
on how it is used
Amount of laparoscopic
experience?
Amount of action video
game play.
Years of surgical
training?
Rosser, J. C. Jr., Lynch,...
Tetris Builds Brains
• Three months of
practice
• Increase in cortical
thickness and function
• Whose brains are we
changi...
Mis-
Genceptions
• Everyone is using
technology
• Baby Boomers: 1945–1961
• Gen X: 1962–1981
• Gen Y: 1981–2001
What They Say
About Boomers
• Trust authority
• Work your way up and
earn respect over time
• Comfortable working on
own w...
• Mistrust authority
• Worry if called in by boss
• Should benefit from
productivity and skills
• Take direction, but want...
• Don’t recognize authority
• Worry if NOT called by boss
• TEXT boss with questions…at
2AM
• Expect to start at top
• Thi...
Gen Y
•Tech-dependent, not tech savvy
•“Entitlement” is really big expectations
•Most giving generation
•Altruistic, chari...
Mis-Genceptions
•There are differences but…
• …they have as much to do with geography as
age.
• Town size, rural vs. urban...
Low Tech, Hands-On to High Tech, IsolationConcrete to AbstractGemeinschaft to GesellschaftRural to UrbanCommunity to Socie...
Greenfield, P. M. (2009). Linking social change and developmental change: Shifting pathways of
human development. Developm...
Explains Why:
• Games predict
laparoscopic skill
• IQ scores improve
• Tetris builds brain
• ATC students
become more FI
•...
They’re Heee-
ere!• Workplace and
Classrooms
• How can we reach
them all?
Generation
Games?
• 60% of Americans play
video games
• All generations play video
games
• Twice as many adult
women play ...
Games & Gen Y/X
Generation/Characteristic Game Analog
Boomers
Work on own without guidance Solo play
Start at the bottom a...
DGBL
Four Ways to Use Games for Learning
ARGs
• Alternate Reality Games
• Game world layered on
top of real world
• Rabbit Hole
• Examples
• Reality Is Broken
• I ...
COTS
DGBL
• Commercial Off-the-Shelf
DGBL
• Mapping entertainment games
to learning outcomes
• Examples
• Deadliest Catch
...
Serious
Games
• Building games from the
ground up
• Re-Mission
• Project Selene
• Triad Interactive Media
Copyright March....
Gamification
• Applying game
strategies to some
activity
• Learning, social
change, getting
healthy
• Figure out how game
...
Bonus
Round
• Have students build
games
• Quest 2 Learn
• Machinema
• Minecraft & maker
movement
The Top 10 List
Reasons People Say We Cannot Use
Games for Learning
# 10: “We can’tcom pete with commercial
games”
• Average cost for AAA
Multiplayer game: $23M
• What’s the competition?
• T...
# 9: “There’s no evidence that games can
teach” • Unless you’re worried about a
zombie apocalypse!
• Games beat lectures
•...
# 8: “School’s abou t more than Motivation
and Fun”
• True
• Not all learning has to be fun
• Does that mean it has to be
...
# 7: “Serious games are boring”
• “IDers suck the fun out of
games”
• Edutainment & Shavian
Reversals
• Bad ID sucks the f...
# 6: “It’s not practi cal to use DGBL for all
students and subjects”
• True
• Hasn’t stopped us from
using LECTURES and
PO...
# 5: “Games promote isolation”
• False
• 62% of game players play
with others
• MMOs are played by the
most people
• 400M ...
# 4: “Games are addi ctive”
• True*
• 7%-9% of video gamers are
addicted
• < 1% became addicted
THROUGH gameplay
• 84% sta...
# 3: “Games model and promote unethical
behavior”
• True (in some cases)
• GTA
• No predictive value
• Generations
• Where...
• Not all equally moral or ethical
• Practice makes perfect
• Examples & non-examples
Haveyoufoundtherestofthestory?vaneck...
• Games (with violence) can
also promote ethics and
morality
• Hunger Games
• Heavy Rain
• Fallout 3
• Bob DeSchutter
• ht...
# 2: “There’s too much
violence in games”
• Maybe
• Violence and behavior
• 18 studies show a connection
between violent g...
• Aggression vs.
violence
• Self-report, not
behavioral
• Hitman study
• Driving study
• Cooperative play
study
# 2: “Ther...
#1: “Not Enough Research”
•True
•Too many media comparison studies
•No control for ID
•Unanswered questions
• Problem-solv...
•And yet…
•Many things we do know about
how games can help
•What we are doing is not
working
#1: “Not Enough Research”
Schools Today
•Technology = 2%
•Lecture/Independen
t Work = 92%
Dropouts
• 12%–22%
• Most had passing grades*
22%
*Center for Labor Market Studies, May 5, 2009
“Left Behind: The Nation's...
Are Games the Answer?
•No
•DGBL is no panacea
•DGBL is not easy
•DGBL IS a powerful tool
•The stakes are too high
MADLat 2014 keynote
MADLat 2014 keynote
MADLat 2014 keynote
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MADLat 2014 keynote

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These are the slides from my keynote presentation at MADLaT, 2014, on generations, games, and education. I describe what is said about generational differences and the top 10 reasons people say they "cannot" use games, and then present the research related to these as myths, facts, or something in between.

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MADLat 2014 keynote

  1. 1. Generations, Games, & Education Myths and Facts About the Potential of DGBL Richard Van Eck, 2014 University of North Dakota richard.vaneck@und.edu @rickvaneck
  2. 2. Reading Comprehension Permanent Now = No Reflection What Is Technology Doing?
  3. 3. Flynn Effect
  4. 4. Rewired • The brain changes based on how it is used
  5. 5. Amount of laparoscopic experience? Amount of action video game play. Years of surgical training? Rosser, J. C. Jr., Lynch, P.J., Cuddihy, L., Gentile, D. A., Klonsky,J., & Merrell, R. (2007). The impact of video games on training surgeons in the 21st century. Archives ofSurgery, 142, 181-186. Laparoscopic Skill Predictors
  6. 6. Tetris Builds Brains • Three months of practice • Increase in cortical thickness and function • Whose brains are we changing?
  7. 7. Mis- Genceptions • Everyone is using technology • Baby Boomers: 1945–1961 • Gen X: 1962–1981 • Gen Y: 1981–2001
  8. 8. What They Say About Boomers • Trust authority • Work your way up and earn respect over time • Comfortable working on own without guidance or contact • No work-life balance • Low-moderate users of technology
  9. 9. • Mistrust authority • Worry if called in by boss • Should benefit from productivity and skills • Take direction, but want autonomy to do it on their own • Live to work • Moderate users of technology What They Say About Gen X
  10. 10. • Don’t recognize authority • Worry if NOT called by boss • TEXT boss with questions…at 2AM • Expect to start at top • This is their first job • Starting later than previous generations • Work to fund lifestyle • Want constant feedback • Tech-dependent What They Say About Gen Y
  11. 11. Gen Y •Tech-dependent, not tech savvy •“Entitlement” is really big expectations •Most giving generation •Altruistic, charitable, social justice •Great work ethic… •…if you SHOW them how to get there •Texts are considerate •Phone calls are an invasion of privacy
  12. 12. Mis-Genceptions •There are differences but… • …they have as much to do with geography as age. • Town size, rural vs. urban, economy, etc. • Regions have cultural homogeneity that determines how you are raised
  13. 13. Low Tech, Hands-On to High Tech, IsolationConcrete to AbstractGemeinschaft to GesellschaftRural to UrbanCommunity to Society Greenfield, P. M. (2009). Linking social change and developmental change: Shifting pathways of human development. Developmental Psychology, 45(2), pp. 401–418. DOI: 10.1037/a0014726 As the world shifts from: It ALSO shifts from: How Do We Explain It?
  14. 14. Greenfield, P. M. (2009). Linking social change and developmental change: Shifting pathways of human development. Developmental Psychology, 45(2), pp. 401–418. DOI: 10.1037/a0014726 Effects Profound
  15. 15. Explains Why: • Games predict laparoscopic skill • IQ scores improve • Tetris builds brain • ATC students become more FI • Kids do better on this test
  16. 16. They’re Heee- ere!• Workplace and Classrooms • How can we reach them all?
  17. 17. Generation Games? • 60% of Americans play video games • All generations play video games • Twice as many adult women play games as boys under 18 • Women purchase half of all games; make up 48% of all gamers
  18. 18. Games & Gen Y/X Generation/Characteristic Game Analog Boomers Work on own without guidance Solo play Start at the bottom and work your way up You start with nothing Gen X Tell me what to do and let me do it Self-paced game-play; Multiple play styles I should benefit from my productivity and skills Advancement is based on skill Don’t trust authority—want consistent feedback and rules Rules do not change Gen Y Expect constant feedback Immediate and frequent feedback Entitlement = Big Expectations Unlimited potential for advancement if you follow the path; Heroic quests/Bosses
  19. 19. DGBL Four Ways to Use Games for Learning
  20. 20. ARGs • Alternate Reality Games • Game world layered on top of real world • Rabbit Hole • Examples • Reality Is Broken • I Love Bees • World Without Oil • Music Theory Copyright March.Hare0401@gmail.com
  21. 21. COTS DGBL • Commercial Off-the-Shelf DGBL • Mapping entertainment games to learning outcomes • Examples • Deadliest Catch • Sim City • GTA Copyright March.Hare0401@gmail.com
  22. 22. Serious Games • Building games from the ground up • Re-Mission • Project Selene • Triad Interactive Media Copyright March.Hare0401@gmail.com
  23. 23. Gamification • Applying game strategies to some activity • Learning, social change, getting healthy • Figure out how game strategies map to the classroom
  24. 24. Bonus Round • Have students build games • Quest 2 Learn • Machinema • Minecraft & maker movement
  25. 25. The Top 10 List Reasons People Say We Cannot Use Games for Learning
  26. 26. # 10: “We can’tcom pete with commercial games” • Average cost for AAA Multiplayer game: $23M • What’s the competition? • The bar is low! • Not all DGBL requires making games Haveyoufoundtherestofthestory?vaneckconsulting@gmail.com
  27. 27. # 9: “There’s no evidence that games can teach” • Unless you’re worried about a zombie apocalypse! • Games beat lectures • 7%-40% percent • Can turn “Fs” into “Bs” • Games teach many things • spelling, reading, mathematics, physics, health, biology, computer science, spatial visualization, divided attention, surgical skills, and knowledge mapping* • Results are not uniform • Wrong question *See Tobias and Fletcher, 2011; O'Neil, Wainess, & Baker, 2005; Hays, 2005; Randel, Morris, Wetzle, & Whitehead, 1992; Vogel,.Vogel, Cannon-Bowers, Bowers, Muse, & Wright, 2006 Haveyoufoundtherestofthestory?vaneckconsulting@gmail.com
  28. 28. # 8: “School’s abou t more than Motivation and Fun” • True • Not all learning has to be fun • Does that mean it has to be painful? • Motivation ≠ fun • Perserverance • #1 motivator? • $ • Gamers and motivation • 10:1 failure:success Ratio Haveyoufoundtherestofthestory?vaneckconsulting@gmail.com
  29. 29. # 7: “Serious games are boring” • “IDers suck the fun out of games” • Edutainment & Shavian Reversals • Bad ID sucks the fun out of any learning • Gagne’s Nine Events in every game Marc Prensky Haveyoufoundtherestofthestory?vaneckconsulting@gmail.com
  30. 30. # 6: “It’s not practi cal to use DGBL for all students and subjects” • True • Hasn’t stopped us from using LECTURES and POWERPOINTS for all students and subjects! • False argument Haveyoufoundtherestofthestory?vaneckconsulting@gmail.com
  31. 31. # 5: “Games promote isolation” • False • 62% of game players play with others • MMOs are played by the most people • 400M worldwide • 50M USA Haveyoufoundtherestofthestory?vaneckconsulting@gmail.com Families with children under 18:
  32. 32. # 4: “Games are addi ctive” • True* • 7%-9% of video gamers are addicted • < 1% became addicted THROUGH gameplay • 84% start and stay • Impulsivity/emotional regulation predict • Gambling: 7% • Alcohol: 8% * Gentile, D., Hyekyung, C., Liau, A., Sim, T., & Li, D. (2011). Pathological Video Game Use Among Youths: A Two-Year Longitudinal Study. Pediatrics. doi:10.1542/peds.2010-1353 Haveyoufoundtherestofthestory?vaneckconsulting@gmail.com
  33. 33. # 3: “Games model and promote unethical behavior” • True (in some cases) • GTA • No predictive value • Generations • Where you live and how you were raised are more important Haveyoufoundtherestofthestory?vaneckconsulting@gmail.com
  34. 34. • Not all equally moral or ethical • Practice makes perfect • Examples & non-examples Haveyoufoundtherestofthestory?vaneckconsulting@gmail.com # 3: “Games model and promote unethical behavior”
  35. 35. • Games (with violence) can also promote ethics and morality • Hunger Games • Heavy Rain • Fallout 3 • Bob DeSchutter • http://tinyurl.com/VanEckGa meEthics # 3: “Games model and promote unethical behavior”
  36. 36. # 2: “There’s too much violence in games” • Maybe • Violence and behavior • 18 studies show a connection between violent games and aggression • 3o% of the studies are by the same authors • And yet… • 65% of the top-selling games are NOT rated M • 12% of all games are rated M • Not all GBL is commercial
  37. 37. • Aggression vs. violence • Self-report, not behavioral • Hitman study • Driving study • Cooperative play study # 2: “There’s too much violence in games”
  38. 38. #1: “Not Enough Research” •True •Too many media comparison studies •No control for ID •Unanswered questions • Problem-solving validation; violence and cooperative play; resilience; ethical/moral development; cultural factors
  39. 39. •And yet… •Many things we do know about how games can help •What we are doing is not working #1: “Not Enough Research”
  40. 40. Schools Today •Technology = 2% •Lecture/Independen t Work = 92%
  41. 41. Dropouts • 12%–22% • Most had passing grades* 22% *Center for Labor Market Studies, May 5, 2009 “Left Behind: The Nation's Dropout Crisis”
  42. 42. Are Games the Answer? •No •DGBL is no panacea •DGBL is not easy •DGBL IS a powerful tool •The stakes are too high

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