Why Video Games are the Future of Education
We live in a world where VR and AR are a thing, yet, we still learn from dusty books and explore boring topics in school. Sure, the math does help with your analytical thinking and memorization trains the brain to retain information, but this is not all we should be doing in school!
As it turns out, 50% of school dropouts list boredom as the main reason they left. So, how can we change the rules and move from ‘have to learn’ from ‘want to learn’?
According to recent researches (particularly studies that were conducted by Dr. Adam Gazzaley or Dr. Daphne Bavelier), the gaming world has it figured it out. The system that keeps young children, teenagers, and adults in front of screens all day long could also help them learn and broaden their horizons.
It seems difficult to believe, right? We dare you to take a look at the reasons listed below and reconsider your opinion when you reach the end.
The Rewarding System
In school, you start from A (which is the best score you can get) and you either maintain at this level or you drop to B, C, D, and even F. So, the rewarding system goes from positive to negative. Even more, when you’re just starting, it’s easy to get an A and feel good about learning. But, as you grow older, the topics become more difficult, and it takes a lot more work to get that good grade.
In the gaming world, the reward system is exactly the opposite. You start with the lowest settings and, as you gain experience and face challenging tasks, you get more points (directly related to the difficulty of the task).
The Level of Excitement
In school, you are usually presented with the solution and are taught the method to reach that solution. Basically, the work is being cut out for you, and your only task is to memorize the things other did. There’s no thrill in looking for the solution, there’s no debate in deciding which of the several possible solutions is the best.
On the other hand, in a video game, you are presented with a scenario and an environment. As the player, you are expected to observe the situation, form a hypothesis to how things should go, and then you need to test your hypothesis to see if it’s correct. If your initial hypothesis is not correct, you learn from the experience and try again.
Basically, games like Hole.io apply the scientific method in one way or another to get players excited about finding the solution. This is exactly what schools should do!
Training for Real-life Situations
Did you know that people who play FPS games have better reflexes and are more aware of their surrounding? Or that gamers who love playing racing games are more observant when driving a car in real life?
As it turns out, the brain doesn’t make the difference between real-life and simulation as long as you are focused on the task. To our neuronal network, it doesn’t matter if you’re dribbling a ball on the field or if you’re playing soccer games on a PC – the same areas will be activated in the brain! True, you won’t develop the necessary muscle and resistance to be able to play the game professionally, but you will already have the basic skills and orientation required on a soccer field.
Even more, it was proven that pilots who use video games to train (besides the standard training) outperform their colleagues who don’t.
The conclusion to all these data is that the current education system is wildly behind anything remotely appropriate for the modern days. Education should be customized, and children should be motivated to choose their field of interest. Furthermore, we should allow Artificial Intelligent systems to help teachers improve the way they communicate with students and reduce the stress of dealing with dozens of children every day.