Are games important? They’re certainly profitable and far more pervasive that you might think. Microsoft’s video game Halo, and all its successors, have sold over 60 million copies worldwide, and have grossed $3.4 billion. It’s not outrageous to say that games are just as important and influential–if not more so–than films and television, let alone books.
But are they useful? Of what practical value could they be for…well, teaching history?
Back from the archives, ready for a new round of listeners, is Mark Carnes, Professor of History at Columbia University, and the creator of a pedagogy known as “Reacting to the Past”. He’s also the author of Minds on Fire: How Immersive Games Transform College. He and Al Zambone discuss college as professors like to think it is, versus how it really is, and how Carnes sees immersive games as a way of bridging that rather large gap.
For Further Reading:
William G. Bowen, Matthew M. Chingos & Michael S. McPherson, Crossing the Finish Line: Completing College at America’s Public Universities
Reacting to the Past–the official mega-site of the Reacting Consortium. Text, videos, and links to games in progress.
The Reacting to the Past Series at W.W. Norton