2016 » Papers » Volume 1 » Gender and Identity in Video Games as a Virtual Learning Environment
|1. GENDER AND IDENTITY IN VIDEO GAMES AS A VIRTUAL LEARNING ENVIRONMENT|
Volume 1 | DOI: 10.12753/2066-026X-16-079 | Pages: 541-546
Matilda St?hl, ?bo Akademi University
The design of video games encourage playfulness and exploration in an environment that revolves around problem solving. The development of these traits and the learning potential in virtual environments have caught the attention of educators. (Gee & Hayes, 2010.) Video games are a very common motivator in learning how to use new technology; skills the students will have great use of in the future. Although, since gaming is considered unfeminine many girls tend to give up gaming as teenagers and they thereby miss the opportunity to learn how to use new technologies as well as developing their skills in problem solving. (Gee, 2007.)
Video games and other virtual learning environments can also be considered as alternative realities where the gamer can become whoever he or she wants. Juul (2009) argues that the gamer's identity is highly characterized by his or her attitude towards gaming and whether he or she is inclined to identify himself or herself as a gamer. Gee notes the relevance of the identity perspective in regard to learning through video games. According to him, the gamer identity consists of three different identities that together form an entirety: the virtual identity, the real life identity and the projective identity where Gee play with the word project and its two meanings. On one hand there is a gamer projecting his or her values and desires onto the virtual character. On the other hand the character can be considered a project where the gamer within the limits of the game creates a personality for their character. (Gee, 2007.) In other words, the girls who give up gaming also miss out the possibility to explore their own identities as well.
During eLSE I wish to give a presentation based on my master's thesis on how video games, even commercial ones, can be considered learning environments and how this point of view will evolve in my doctoral thesis.
Gee, J P. (2007). What Video Games have to teach us about Learning and Literacy. Palgrave
Gee, J P. & Hayes, E R. (2010). Women and gaming. The Sims and 21st century learning. Palgrave
Juul, J. (2009). Casual Revolution: Reinventing Video Games and Their Players. Cambridge, M A. USA.
video games, gender, identity, learning, virtual environments