Standard Article

Educational Games and Outcomes

  1. Amanda Ochsner,
  2. Dennis Ramirez,
  3. Constance Steinkuehler

Published Online: 11 FEB 2015

DOI: 10.1002/9781118767771.wbiedcs034

The International Encyclopedia of Digital Communication and Society

How to Cite

Ochsner, A., Ramirez, D. and Steinkuehler, C. 2015. Educational Games and Outcomes. The International Encyclopedia of Digital Communication and Society. 9999:1–8.

Author Information

  1. University of Wisconsin–Madison, US

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 11 FEB 2015


The field of games and learning encompasses research around the design of educational games, the ways in which teachers and players use commercial games for educational purposes, and even ways in which game-like systems are being implemented to make learning more engaging. The first section of this entry outlines several foundational theories for games, learning, and engagement, including flow, the zone of proximal development, and hard fun, as well as principles of learning that are often embedded in good game design. The second section includes a discussion of the ways that games are designed for and used for learning – to teach content and to introduce players to new ways of being, including providing entrance to new knowledge domains and discourses. The final section describes emerging trends in the educational games and the games and learning field, including the gamification of education, badges, and embedded assessment strategies.


  • digital media;
  • gamification;
  • interactive multimedia;
  • learning;
  • teaching;
  • video games