Somebody please hold us, it has finally happened. Our dreams have come true! Someone has made a history class that fuses the academic study of history with the playing of video games. That’s right; a professor by the name of Joseph November of the University of South Carolina has crafted a history class that features video games as the main way students engage with course material.
According to a handout of the course description posted on reddit, the major focus of the class is to examine each game’s portrayal of its respective time period as well as consider how video games as a medium can help provide new perspectives on history. The playing list for the class features a variety of video games based in historical settings such as Assassins’ Creed II, Railroad Tycoon, Age of Empires III, Fallout 3 and many more.
With the announcement of this class, the nerd in all of us at the Clog just about exploded with copious amounts of jealousy at all the students who are going to be able to take it. But the class made us think for a second about video games in general. It really is a form of mass media that is still very rarely used in an academic setting. Heck, the most that we students at Cal have had that come close to this are deCals on competing in “Starcraft” and the application of science towards “Pokemon.” Maybe there’s a reason for that. After all, video games still need to do a fair amount of growing up in critical depth before they can truly appeal to the intellectual minds of university professors. Perhaps schools can one day have classes that focus on video games as an artistic medium and the insights that they can provide about specific issues on an intellectual level. For now, the intellectual gamers in all of us will just have to wait. Here’s to wishing that day comes soon and before we graduate! *crosses fingers*
“Umm…sign me up please.” [Reddit]
Image source: meddygarnet under Creative Commons
Tags:Age of Empires III, Assassins' Creed, deCal, Fallout 3, History, History Class, Pokemon, reddit, Starcraft, University of South Carolina, Video games
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