Thursday, 29 March 2018

Games students play: Simulation in HE

Hands up if you have enjoyed a Role Play (in Higher Education that is), a Baloon Debate (Why I should get a First), Discussion (e.g.This House considers that the introduction of student interaction in lectures is deeply offensive to traditional values in Higher Education), a case study or even a Game or Simulation...

Now keep your hands up if you have used any of these devices in YOUR teaching...

Games and Simulation are risky as so much could go wrong (but usually does not). Well designed simulations  - not always based on technology - can help to achieve learning benefit and student engagement.

There are some basic features that make an effective simulation :
  • The sense of competition - we love to win;
  • Risk and the unknown - not everything can be controlled by an easy algorithm;
  • Opportunity to put lessons to use (feedback plus repetition)
  • Complexity - just like real life, and
  • Reward - Normally the warm glow of a job well done...
Oh, and another vital couple of ingredients:
  • Imagination from the tutor and the students, and
  • Risk (again) - but this time on the part of the tutor, its so much easier to conform and to make it easy for yourself.

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