Posted in Games in education
on 18 - March 2006 at 05:07 PM
(16 years ago). 39 views.

The Serious Games mailing list recently received a wonderful note from Clark Aldrich (blog).
Mr. Aldrich has written some books on the topic of games of learning (which I haven't read yet). Simulations and the Future of Learning : An Innovative (and Perhaps Revolutionary) Approach to e-Learning and Learning by Doing : A Comprehensive Guide to Simulations, Computer Games, and Pedagogy in e-Learning and Other Educational Experiences".
**The First Paradox** is that people learn more from the underlying systems and
interface in any educational experience than from the surface content.
**The Second Paradox** is that educational simulations can never be completely
comprehensive and accurate.
**The Third Paradox** is that one can't even begin to understand a sim by watching someone else play it; one has to play it him or her self. One can't even begin to evaluate a sim by playing it; one has to measure the results of someone else playing it.
**The Fourth Paradox** is that things that seem simple, narrow, and isolated when "taught" through traditional linear means are deep, complex, and extendable when practiced in simulations.
**The Fifth Paradox** is that when educational simulations are first created, they are heavy on simulation elements, and casual players complain they are too hard. Over iterations, as a result of the complaints, educational simulations are made easier and more fun, and serious players then complain they are not
deep enough.
**The Sixth Paradox** is that vendors and builders of simulations like to describe them as vaguely and mystically as possible:
**The Seventh Paradox** Most deployments of simulation based programs look successful if measured forward from what a student learned, but most simulation deployments look like failures if measured backwards from what percentage of material that the students could have learned, they did learn.
**The Eighth Paradox**, is that things get worse before they get better, even when the transformation is sought after and desired.
**The Ninth Paradox** of Educational Simulations states that a good educational simulation takes traditional linear training just to use.