Sunday, 10 January 2016

Wheel-of-fortune experiment

"Classroom learning can generate the same thrill as gambling or riding a rollercoaster, when an element of chance is introduced, a new study suggests."

"As a result, pupils’ minds are intensely focused on the task at hand, the research shows. They can even end up screaming with excitement as they learn."

"Paul Howard-Jones, professor of neuroscience and education at the University of Bristol, believes, therefore, that the majority of lessons, in all subjects, should be taught using computer gambling games."

"Using brain-imaging technology, Professor Howard-Jones examined the effects of a gambling-based rewards system on 24 postgraduate students. Competing against one another in teams of three, the students were awarded points for each question they answered correctly."

"They then spun a `wheel of fortune`, which offered them a 50-50 chance of either doubling their points or losing all of them."

"Professor Howard-Jones found that the area of the students’ brains that indicates distraction and inattention `When they stopped thinking about the test they were being asked to do, and started thinking about what’s for dinner tonight was rarely active while they played the game`."

"By contrast, the brain’s dopamine responses usually associated with more visceral pleasures, such as good food or sex were generated by the game’s level of risk and reward."

"The project is one of six trials being funded by the Wellcome Trust and the Education Endowment Foundation to see how neuroscience can improve education."

"It will now be rolled out to classrooms across the country: 10,000 Year 8 pupils will spend a year learning science using Professor Howard-Jones’s wheel-of-fortune game."

So they`re going to addict 8 year olds to dopamine.

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