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Playing games, learning science: Promise and challenges
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Tan, D. K. C., & Chee, Y. S. (2014). Playing games, learning science: Promise and challenges. Australian Journal of Education in Chemistry, 73, 20-28.
Computer games can provide an immersive environment for players (learners) to experience scientific phenomena, reactions and properties according to related theories and laws, and provide a relevant context to assist learners to make sense of scientific concepts involved. Inquiry-based learning is also facilitated as players have to explore, discover, form hypotheses, experiment and make decisions based on outcomes generated in the game in the pursuit of an overall goal. Thus, science-based computer games can allow the player to learn to be a scientist, by thinking and acting as one in the game, instead of merely learning about science. This paper describes the development of a multi-player game, Legends of Alkhimia, and its associated instructional material to facilitate scientific inquiry and the learning of chemistry by lower secondary (Grades 7 and 8) students in Singapore. Challenges faced and lessons learnt in the implementation of game-based learning in the classroom are also discussed.
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