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Games 'deserve a place in class'

Thursday, January 1, 2004

Abstract

Researchers at the Institute of Education at London University contend that the study of computer and video games has a place in the academic curriculum just as do studies of film, television, and literature. The findings are based on a three-year study in the United Kingdom of games and their influence on education. According to Caroline Pelletier, manager of the project, "Games literacy is a way of investigating how games are means of expression and representation, just like writing or drawing." Andrew Burn, associate director of the Institute of Education's Centre for the Study of Children, Youth, and Media, called games "a legitimate cultural form that deserve critical analysis." Burn noted that, according to the study, a key element of the value of games is allowing students to create their own games. Researchers did acknowledge, however, that in the often male-dominated world of gaming, many of the girls in the study felt left out. Research fellow Diane Carr said that girls "have little motivation to play and remain disengaged." Representatives of the gaming industry praised the researchers for "intelligently" addressing the "cultural, social, and educational value of computer and video games."

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