Game-Based Learning (GBL)

Education Jul 18, 2020

The Game-Based Learning (GBL) is not a new concept it just gained traction in the recent years. In kinder garden we teach our children through making them play games. Then, in the primary and secondary school level there is a tutor standing in front of 35–50 of them and lecturing them and when it comes to higher and technical education the same happens just the number of students increases to perhaps 100s. The most mesmerizing part to me is that the toughness or hardness level of the knowledge that is trying to be imparted is increasing by the years that student progresses.

The simple way to think about this is that if someone wants to learn a bicycle how can one learn? Is it by listening to the lecturer speaking about it or is it by seeing tutor do it or reading books about how to ride a bicycle or by doing it oneself? The intuitive answer comes to anyone’s mind is that by doing it one can learn the fastest and most efficiently. Game-Based Learning (GBL) also tries to do the same. Andre Thomas at TAMU gave a speech for TEDx and he spoke at length about GBL. He showed a video where it was mentioned that the calculus has one of the highest failing rates among the students. The calculus is the foundational course for all the STEM studies. The video also explained how the game based learning showed an improvement. These explain that how the growing usage of digital games and applied sciences into learning environments has affected both the teaching of educators and the learning of students. Game-Based Learning (GBL) can be successfully used to improve both learning and teaching. It simply means including games in your instruction. One of the greatest challenges for educator is with-success teaching giant groups of students, all of whom having totally different personalities, different capabilities and different learning preferences. The tutors will have only one way of teaching which would not be ideal in terms of imparting knowledge. This issue can be solved by the game based learning approaches. This could assist tutors to better manage their class and learning process.

One more distinct advantage of the GBL approach would be that it would be engaging the students. The students mostly in the modern day classrooms lose interest within first 15 minutes of the lecture. Because GBL proposes the learning by doing approach students will be motivated to spend more time on engaging on it. Normally, what we observe is student saying “I am really bad at Mathematics or I am really bad at physics” but you would never here student saying I am really bad at XYZ game. They would always say that XYZ game is proving tough for me but I will spend more time on it and crack it. So GBL encourages the strong mindset and help build attitude of perseverance. GBL could make learning fun and hence could prove to be the tool which accelerates the learning process. The unique insight about GBL is the same approach could used to assess the knowledge students grasped. The game which was used to impart knowledge could also use analytics and other AI tools to assess so games could be integral part of examinations in near future.

While the new horizon of Game-Based Learning (GBL) looks bright, the sustained efforts needed to be put in by the various governments, NGOs, Industry and Education institutes to leverage the power of modern technology to disrupt the education sector with increasing the efficiency of knowledge gathering and accelerate the learning process by make learning purposeful.

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