Game-based learning is a revolutionary way of learning that involves gameplay with a specific learning outcome. The subject matter is broken down into a game format, making it easier for participants to process and retain the learned information. Due to their informative nature, these games are often referred to as educational or serious, though this does not mean they are dull, far from it!
Learning-based games can be as simple as the Name Game or more scenario-based like the Just A Minute Game. Recent developments in technology have meant that game-based learning is fast becoming a huge force in the gaming sector, with global revenues predicted to reach $17billion by 2023.
So, what does the future hold for game-based learning? Would you like to know more?
Catalysts for change
Advances in technology have been instrumental in changing the way game-based learning is used, but there are also several other factors at play. Firstly, it’s important to note that game-based learning is becoming much more widely accepted as a method of learning, especially in large corporations. This has been compounded by innovations in Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, and Mixed Reality technology. Secondly, there have been numerous studies in the fields of neuroscience and cognitive therapies which indicate that game-based learning helps some people to retain a lot more information, furthermore, it is a great way to foster a more inclusive workplace.
While game-based learning has been prevalent in many sectors for many years, the corporate sector is experiencing a high growth rate as companies increasingly become aware of the benefits of this style of learning.
Training is an area where game-based learning can become very useful. Using games to prepare an employee for a new job is a great way to get them up to speed without the risk of costly mistakes. For example, flight simulators have been widely used by pilots to prepare them for flying real planes. But it doesn’t end there. Recent technological developments have meant that a wide range of industries can use VR to train their staff. Walmart uses 45 modules of VR in their 200 Academic training centers while the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland use simulated surgery on virtual accident patients. This style of learning fosters a more inclusive environment for students and enables students to learn in a scenario without the intense pressure of a real-life situation.
Embracing mobile technology
In 2008, only 12% of the total consumption of digital media occurred through mobile devices. However, this figure is now at 28%, indicating that game-based learning will need to be developed with mobiles in mind. The availability of WIFI and instant connectivity means that we are rarely unplugged from our mobiles, so educational games developed with technology will need to be available on multiple platforms. The accessibility of mobile technology means that there will be fewer opportunities for students to claim that there is no time to learn – because if you have time to scroll, you have time to learn!
Students take the lead
Applying game-based technology to mobile phones and VR also opens up the opportunity for students to take the lead in their studies, creating a more organic structure that intuitively responds to the learner’s abilities and skills. This aspect will have an impact on game design and will encourage contact creators to re-evaluate the way they display their subject matter and measure the learner’s activity. Whether they are creating bite-sized mobile games for on-the-go learning or advanced virtual reality training programs for highly technical jobs, game-based learning developers have a whole world of possibilities to explore and deliver information.
The game-based learning industry is going from strength to strength. Exponential advances in technology coupled with the growing acceptance of educational games in the corporate sector mean that the road ahead looks extremely interesting for game-based learning. Whether you’re a student, game developer, or course provider, the future looks bright for game-based learning! It also has many other applications like clothing design or teaching online.