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Alignment of Games and Learning Goals

The use of games to teach is hardly new. The game of Go has been used for more than 4,000 years to train military strategists, intellectuals, chief executives, and high-ranking officials. Today this ancient lineage is extended by the integration of many games, old and new, with computer technology, which has amplified their use for education and training.

Computer games, sometimes called video games, are multimedia environments that respond rapidly to users’ actions, introduce content as competition or challenges, include a story line with specific objectives to be attained, and are conducted with specific rules for participation. Such games are played by Americans of school age for an average of 13.2 hours per week, with males spending 16.4 and females 9.2 hours playing them. Given this ...

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