Sunday, December 24, 2006

Where Serious Games In Education Is Heading

Global Leaders in the use of serious games to solve learning issues


A Thinking World is a 3D gaming environment that may contain one or several tasks that you can complete to learn about a subject area

Extracts from Serious Games Source Teaching Thinking Skills Through Game Authoring

Thinking Worlds™ is an incredibly versatile and globally unique educational games authoring engine. This game allows you to play, edit, create and even share games with other members of the Thinking Worlds™ community. Thinking Worlds is based on well researched and proven learning principles and has already been used to develop highly engaging games in many subject areas.


There are many examples of games created by users that can be downloaded and give you ideas of what is possible. A New Beginning has been added to Thinking Worlds, so those interested in the game can play, edit, and share it globally.

"A New Beginning" Snapshot


Chris Harte, e-learning coordinator at St. Robert of Newminster RC School in North East England, is one of many teachers who have trialed a game-authoring engine and found the results extremely worthwhile. Chris is an innovative and dynamic teacher, who won The National Teacher Training Agency Award for Outstanding New Teacher in 2004.


Chris became involved with learning-based games after seeing the potential of applications from Caspian Learning in the City Learning Centre at St Robert’s. He was engaged with the idea of applying thinking skills in the context of video-gaming and wanted to see what pupils could do with it.

A New Beginning

Chris and his students used Thinking Worlds, a game-authoring engine from Caspian, to develop their game - A New Beginning. The flexibility of the engine allows teachers and students to create, edit, play and share their own 3D learning based games and share them with the online
Thinking Worlds community.

One of the major drawbacks of using conventional video games, and games designed specifically for the syllabus, in the classroom is that you can’t update or personalise the games’ content. Thinking Worlds overcomes this as the user can design their own games and tailor them to a specific class, group or individual.

A New Beginning was the first title to be developed using the Thinking Worlds technology. The project’s aim was to investigate thinking skills through student development of a learning video game and involved 18 students between 14 and 16.

A New Beginning is an example of where the use of learning-based games in education is heading. The future is in the development of highly personalised and specific video games. By giving students and teachers the tools to actually develop their own games that are wholly relevant to the curriculum, we are set to see a step-change in the use of educational games in the classroom over the coming years and a shift in the opinion that is currently surrounding the use of games in education.