There has been much discussion, in both the general and education media, on the relevance – or lack thereof – of computer games to education and learning.

Some see computer games and their associated culture as something to tap into: ‘If only kids spent as much time on their maths as they do on their Xbox!’. As a result, there have been various attempts to bring the ‘x-factor’ of gaming into education multimedia – and the rationale for doing so is entirely understandable. Computer games such as World of Warcraft or leading titles on Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 are massively popular, with millions of loyal fans. If only some of that magic could rub off onto formal education. But what is this magic, this x-factor?

There’s sometimes a simplistic ‘me too’ approach when bringing gaming culture and ideas into the classroom. What makes computer games so uniquely engaging to its audience is often overlooked. les mer