Beyond the Hype: Evidence-Based Digital Games

Conference Archive

DevLearn 2017 Conference & Expo - October 26, 2017

Ruth Clark

Clark Training & Consulting

There has been a lot of hype around games for learning. As a result, games are increasingly used in L&D, but many of these games simply target low-level learning using frames such as Jeopardy or Concentration and have only had minimal impact. There is a need to maximize the value from this approach, and to do this you need to design games that support learning objectives and apply proven instructional methods. And to do this well, you need to understand what the research says about the instructional value of games.

In this session, you’ll investigate what the research shows about using games more strategically and effectively in L&D. You’ll begin by defining the key features of a game, considering game genres, and reviewing evidence on what does and does not work in game design. You’ll then look at the research evidence on three important questions for L&D: Does extensive playing of commercial games improve cognitive skills? How can game outcomes be improved by adding proven instructional methods? And how does learning from a game compare with learning from traditional methods?

In this session, you will learn:

  • About the key features that make up a game
  • How to manage cognitive load in games
  • What the evidence says about the value of commercial games to improve mental skills
  • How to improve game outcomes by adding proven instructional methods to your game
  • What the evidence shows about the value of games versus traditional methods for learning

Novice to advanced designers, developers, managers, directors, and senior leaders (VP, CLO, executive, etc.).

Technology discussed in this session:
Games delivered via desktop computers as well as game-specific platforms.


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