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Games, Learning, and the Crisis of American Colleges and Universities: What to Do Before We Go Out of Business

James Gee, Arizona State University
Friday, March 23rd, 2012, Frangipani Room, IMU, Noon-1:30 p.m. 
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James Gee

In this presentation, James Gee will discuss the current crisis in American college and universities and connect this crisis, and the societal problems of which it is a part, to learning in the 21st Century. In turn, he will make the case that well designed video games, ones that engage learners with serious topics in goal-oriented and participatory networks, may point the way for how higher education can better prepare our students to solve some of our greatest challenges, and in so doing, remain vital institutions. 

James Paul Gee is the Mary Lou Fulton Presidential Professor of Literacy Studies at Arizona State University. He is a member of the National Academy of Education. His book Sociolinguistics and Literacies (Fourth Edition 2011) was one of the founding documents in the formation of the “New Literacy Studies”, an interdisciplinary field devoted to studying language, learning, and literacy in an integrated way in the full range of their cognitive, social, and cultural contexts. His book An Introduction to Discourse Analysis (Third Edition 2011) brings together his work on a methodology for studying communication in its cultural settings, an approach that has been widely influential over the last two decades.

His most recent books have dealt with video games, language, and learning. What Video Games Have to Teach Us About Learning and Literacy (Second Edition 2007) argues that good video games are designed to enhance learning through effective learning principles supported by research in the Learning Sciences. Situated Language and Learning (2004) places video games within an overall theory of learning and literacy and shows how they can help us in thinking about the reform of schools. His other recent books include: Good Video Games and Good Learning: Collected Essays (2007); How to Do Discourse Analysis (2011); Woman as Gamers: The Sims and 21st Century Learning (2010) and Language and Learning in the Digital World (2011), both written with Elizabeth Hayes. Prof. Gee has published widely in journals in linguistics, psychology, the social sciences, and education.

Visit James Gee’s Blog

Read James Gee's chapter Learning and Games from Salen, K., ed. (2008) The Ecology of Games: Connecting Youth, Games, and Learning. MIT Press. Cambridge, p. 21-40.