How to LearnScience

General Science

It is a general belief that science, like biology, chemistry, or physics are best learned not by mathematical formulae or memorization, but rather through practice. Taking part in experiments, labs, demonstrations or visualizations are the best way to understand science phenomena and its principles. (Squire, 2004) The use of computer or video game simulation is an important way in which one can supplement and/or enhance the conceptual aspect that comes when learning any science.

The reasoning behind why playing video games is a productive activity when learning sciences is because it allows us to learn through doing and creating, it is an activity that will only reward us with knowledge if we engage in it, much like traditional science learning methods such as experiments and labs. (Squire 2008) Through the process of deciding and choosing certain things over others we are realizing what consequences our actions have and why. A key element of gaming in general is the performance aspect of it, you learn by doing, experience is vital in improving and getting better at games, much like science. Students, when learning science, are immersed in problem solving and have a chance to better develop knowledge, through their failures. They have an opportunity to become problem solvers by deducing any issues themselves, video gaming would essentially enable students to teach themselves.

What is more interesting in terms of science learning, is the future technological advancements tied into the field. What kind of possible virtual reality or simulation games will we have in the future that will make the subject more engaging; maybe visualizing the forces of electromagnetism, perhaps role-playing being a scientist, or maybe the handling of material and phenomena previously physically unavailable to us? Furthermore, the broadening and the scope of video games extends further than the class room, the ability to learn science through games can further transcend into professional life.

 

Squire, Kurt D. Video games and education: designing learning systems for an interactive age. Educational Technology, Vol 28, 2008.