Oregon Trail – More Than A Game

This is where education has been and where it’s heading in the not-too distant future.

Dr. Ronelus

HCLE Virtual Museum - the blog

Get ready to hit the Oregon Trail. Buy your oxen, fill your wagon, climb aboard. That’s the way the computer game, Oregon Trail, is played. In its original 1972 incarnation the players had to learn how to log into their timeshare computer and load the program before they could play. Learning about the real Oregon Trail was likely to be a secondary activity. Games for education are back in style, as if they ever left, but there’s a lot about how and what they teach that we have yet to learn.

Even after 40 years of using computer games and simulations to teach, educators still have little quantitative proof that games are an effective method for attaining academic goals or what factors can improve a game’s impact. Oregon Trail is unique because the same theme, informational content and player actions have been used in new versions of the game…

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