On-line games for learning about sustainability
The founders of the Education Arcade at MIT stated that there are many intrinsic motivations for learning associated with games. The threat of failure is lowered. Games allow players to try, make mistakes or fail, and then try again without losing face. Discovery and application of learned skills in new contexts encourages exploration and experimentation. A sense of engagement continues during gaming. Computer games allow players to be stakeholders in the events that occur on the screen. Increasingly, there are a number of games being developed that help people learn about the issues involved in sustainable developement. Besides which ... they are fun!
- BT Better Business Games There are two games here designed to let you experience the kinds of dilemmas and decision making that is necessary to build a responsible and sustainable business. But they’re also fun! The first is Better Business Choices which gives you the opportunity to build your business from scratch. Will you make the right decisions about market conditions and select the right products, suppliers, energy and other vital ingredients to make sure your business survives in the long term? The second is Better Business Dilemmas which aims to simulate what it can be like to manage social and environmental issues in a business - are you up to the challenge? Each game lasts for approximately thirty minutes.
- PowerUp A 3D, action strategy game from IBM ... Save Planet Helios from ecological devastation! PowerUp is a free, online, multiplayer game that allows students to work together in teams to investigate the rich, 3D game environment and learn about the environmental disasters that threaten the game world and its inhabitants.
- MySustHouse games There are two games here. The first lets you explore ways to create a more sustainable environment. The second challenges you to build a sustainable house. This site also has an introduction to sustainability.
- Stop disasters A disaster simulation game from the UN/ISDR. The core audience for this game is 9-16 year olds, but anyone can play and enjoy the game, and everyone will learn more about preventing disasters. Each scenario takes between 10 and 20 minutes to play, depending on the disaster you are trying to prevent and your skill level. There are five scenarios to play, and each can be played on easy, medium or hard difficulty levels.
- Electrocity ElectroCity was developed to increase public awareness – particularly among students – of the basic "common knowledge" needed to discuss energy topics such as: How is energy generated? How much does it cost? How does it affect the environment? That is, the general terms and concepts of the energy industry and the dilemmas that go along with them. ElectroCity is made available online by Genesis Energy, a major generator and retailer of energy in New Zealand.
- The Great Green Web Game Test your knowledge of how consumer choices affect the environment. This is a quiz game developed by the Union of Concerned Scientists. Mainly aimed at North American consumers, but will be of interest to others.
- Serious games: online games for learning In this epaper Anne Derryberry looks at serious games, expected to be a US$1.5 billion global market in 2008. These games are being described by some analysts as the next wave of technology-mediated learning. As organizations intensify their efforts to engage with members of today’s workforce, serious games offer a powerful, effective approach to learning and skills development. This paper looks at serious games and their potential as learning tools.