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Study: Playing Video Games Can Increase Brain Size

A study published in PLOS ONE, an online peer-reviewed journal, gives quantitative evidence of what effects video gaming has from a physical, biological perspective. At very least, playing video games can alter your brain.

Studying a mix of 152 teenagers, both boys and girls, testing was done on two areas of the brain: the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and the left frontal eye fields (FEF). What the researchers discovered was that these areas, responsible for executive control, strategic planning, and eye movement relative to “visio-spatial attention” were all positively influenced by video game play in a significant way.

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How a Teacher Used Civilization IV to Teach Roman History

Education Games Research had an account of a Canadian teacher, Dr. Shawn Graham, who employed a unique approach in using games in education. The teacher set up a scenario in the popular simulation game Civilization IV to allow students to become one of the factions in Ancient Rome’s “Year of the Four Emperors” that took place in 69 A.D. after the assassination of Nero. During that year, four successive Roman generals, Galba, Otho, Vitellius, and Vespasian in rapid succession marched on Rome with their legions and seized power.

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Eric’s High School Experience Makes SAT Studying Interactive

Eric’s High School Experience is an online K-12 education resource that offers interactive learning tools for those attempting the SAT, seeking ways to improve their high school performance or just keeping up with a lifelong learning goal.

It is a response to the College Board’s call to action after the 2013 SAT report on College & Career readiness revealed that only 43% of students that took the SAT were qualified as college-ready, and that this number had remained virtually unchanged for five years.

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Crowdsourcing GIF Emotional Research with MIT Media Lab

Last week, we featured MIT graduate students Travis Rich and Kevin Hu to talk about their gamified crowdsourcing project, GIFGIF. The MIT Media Lab project aims to map out the emotional language of animated gifs using game mechanics to draw user engagement and quantifiable methodologies to gather research data.

Watch the full interview below to learn about:
  • The design purposes for using specific mechanics to drive outcomes.
  • Where they drew inspiration from when building in the mechanics.
  • How the team plans to use gathered data to be used for scientific research.
  • The ethical questions for utilizing a crowd sourcing capability.
  • What possibilities lie ahead to facilitate complex dialogue beyond cataloging gifs.

Be sure to also catch our next episode of the Gamification Revolution this coming Tuesday April 15th at 1 PM ET:

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Connecting Culture and Playful Learning with Jake Orlowitz of Wikipedia

as Jake Orlowitz of Wikipedia explained the many challenges faced by Wikipedia editors on the Gamification Revolution webinar. Last week, we featured the grantee to discuss how Wikipedia is utilizing gamification to train potential editors while reinvigorating its veteran editors.
Watch the full interview below to learn about:
  • What inspired Jake to propose and build the gamification project?
  • How Jake convinced the board of directors to implement the project?
  • What game mechanics were utilized to impart core editorial principles?
  • What were the quantitative and qualitative feedback upon implementation of the project?
  • What is the future roadmap upon successful implementation?
Be sure to also catch our next episode of the Gamification Revolution this Wednesday April 9th at 1 PM ET:

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Influent Turns Spatial Memorization into a Language Learning Game

If you’ve ever attempted to learn a second language, you might have found yourself overwhelmed by this apparently daunting task, or even worse, got yourself disengaged because of the dryness of traditional textbooks and lecture formats they are conveyed in.

Don’t give up just yet! There are a couple of game-like methods out there for you to diverge from the traditional learning setting. This year during GDC week, Influent was released. Aimed to be a “Language Game Redefined”, the game enables players to have a self-directed learning experience, immersing them in a 3D house, fully furnished with a rich amount of everyday objects that can be interacted with in the chosen language.

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10 More Reasons Why You Can’t Miss GSummit SF 2014

Since our latest announcements, including Neil deGrasse Tyson as keynote, we decided to revise our Top 10 Reasons to Attend GSummit 2014 this June 10-13 in San Francisco. Please feel free to share this infograph and remember to use hashtag #GSummit when tweeting. — Join us at GSummit 2014 in San Francisco this June 10-13 [...]

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USC Team Develops Research-Based Games in Education

Lab Excels at ‘Serious Game’ Development Games in education are a new trend and prove that it is very possible to make learning fun. Games can help the player learn and retain important information. While there are many examples of educational games, here is a college which specializes in the development of innovative and unique research-based [...]

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Dr. Neil DeGrasse Tyson to Keynote GSummit SF 2014

  For the past decades, Dr. Neil DeGrasse Tyson has been at the forefront of teaching science to the masses. His singular achievement has been to make the impossible, accessible – and the complex, understandable for millions. In the course of doing this, he’s learned a thing or two about how to teach the hard [...]

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Research: Can Gaming Influence Racial Bias?

Two different experiments were conducted to find out whether white players assigned to play as black avatars made them more prone to develop racial bias against black people. Each study aimed approached this experiment from two angles, testing different types of game play and testing different degrees of immersion. The results were quite interesting…and probably what you’d expect.

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