There’s an interesting book called “War Play,” which is about how the military has used video games for various purposes including training. While it’s easy to see how soldiers could learn to train in combat using typical first-person shooter video games, the military has also used video games as training tools to help soldiers deal with post-traumatic stress disorder after they get back home from combat and try to fit back into civilian life.
Such video games help recovering soldiers deal with their stressful situations in simulated environments and gives them options for how to respond in different ways. More importantly, it also lets soldiers see their situation through the eyes of their loved ones so they can see how their actions appear to others. By using simulation games to help soldiers study and understand their traumatic experiences, soldiers can learn to gain control over their emotions and deal with the problem in a safe manner.
Perhaps the biggest success story for video games has been America’s Army, a video game commissioned by the U.S. Army as a recruiting tool. Besides exposing teenagers to the training the Army puts recruits through, the video game also worked to instill Army values of teamwork and cooperation in the game so players learn what to expect in the Army and how those values work in actual combat to save lives.
By reading about how the military has helped advance education through standardized testing to using video games as simulation tools, you can get a better appreciation for how video games are useful training tools. In the military, it doesn’t do any good for students to get a high test score if they fail in combat and die as a result. That’s why the military emphasizes results. If you can’t produce results, you don’t know what you’re doing, which is a simple concept that even today’s top corporations fail to recognize year after year.
If you’re interested in learning how to marry technology with education, you can learn about the history of video games with the military to cut costs, increase training time, and simulate more than just combat. A book like “War Play” can show you that playing is actually the best form of learning there can be.