The Power of Implicit Game-Based Learning (2015)
EdGE at TERC is a team of designers, educators, and researchers working together to study how game-based learning can be measured and leveraged. We build and study games, grounded in scientific phenomena, and then study what players’ behaviors in the game can tell us about learning.
Our research shows that when kids play our games, and then their teacher uses an example from the game when teaching science, the student learning in improved. We have also built data mining detectors to look at the data exhaust from games to find patterns that show, very reliably, behaviors that are consistent with scientific understanding.
EdGE is continuously using new tools to understand the previously invisible learning that is revealed through digital gameplay. We are exploring data from eye-tracking and EEG tools to understand the connection between attention, executive function, and learning. And we are taking digital games out into the natural world, incorporating augmented reality and geocaching to get kids outside. EdGE is pushing the boundaries of games and learning, creating experiences at the optimal balance of work and play, and capturing it all to build improved models of learning.