Are Video Games Better Teachers Than Tutors?

Admin | Published 2016-09-21 05:09
A new study published in Scientific Reports said that a computer-based brain training program called Activate helps improve students’ performance in math and reading and in some cases even better than individualized tutoring. This training program was developed at Yale University. In the study, 500 second grade students participated wherein their reading and math scores on school-administered tests were investigated. Results show that those who used the brain training program had scores increased significantly during the school year. The effect on math achievement scores was reported to be greater compared to one-on-one tutoring. Additionally, reading scores were reportedly greater than summer reading programs. Dr. Bruce Wexler, lead author of the study and Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry at Yale, said, "The program increases focus, self-control, and memory -- cognitive skills essential for learning. And these are the exactly the cognitive skills affected by poverty, so we believe brain training programs like Activate can help reduce the achievement gaps related to poverty that are seen in schools across the country.” A second finding from the same study illustrates that a five-minute warm-up game just before starting the Activate reading or math content game can improve math and reading performance. It has been said that cognitive priming with short video games are more helpful and powerful compared to techniques the teachers often use to facilitate learning, Wexler said.
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