CIRCA:Why gamers don't learn more - An ecological approach to games as learning environments

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[http://www.digra.org/dl/db/10343.51199.pdf link to the 2010 article on DiGRA.org]
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'''Author's abstract:'''  
'''Author's abstract:'''  
  This paper criticizes the argument that video games by their nature
  This paper criticizes the argument that video games by their nature
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  exceptions, see [1, 15]). This discourse is, rather, based on everyday observations and anecdotes (Gee’s own line of reasoning
  exceptions, see [1, 15]). This discourse is, rather, based on everyday observations and anecdotes (Gee’s own line of reasoning
  starts with an anecdote about a six-year old boy playing Pikmin, [3] pp. 19-21; pp. 39-46).
  starts with an anecdote about a six-year old boy playing Pikmin, [3] pp. 19-21; pp. 39-46).
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Revision as of 14:13, 15 March 2013

link to the 2010 article on DiGRA.org

Author's abstract:

This paper criticizes the argument that video games by their nature
are good learning environments. By applying the ecological
approach to perception and learning to examples of game play, the
paper shows that games can be designed so that players are able
to see and utilize affordances without developing skills. Compared to
other practices, gaming demands less learning of the practitioner
since progress can be built into the system. Contrary to the arguments put forth by James Paul Gee in his book
What video games have to teach us about learning and literacy,
this paper comes to the conclusion that good games do not necessarily imply good learning.
Now the problem with asking why people playing games can learn so much is that it presupposes that
they actually learn a lot. It presupposes that what seems to be highly qualified performances has to do with the skill and
knowledge of the player. The discourse of the competent gamer, a
discourse that Gee gives a voice to, is not based on systematic studies of what gamers learn (such studies are rare with a few
exceptions, see [1, 15]). This discourse is, rather, based on everyday observations and anecdotes (Gee’s own line of reasoning
starts with an anecdote about a six-year old boy playing Pikmin, [3] pp. 19-21; pp. 39-46).

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