Education + Social Networks + Games + NBC Video

I get weekly emails toting some service that is going to take e-learning to the next level, several steps forward, into the next century, etc. If this was even the case half the time I get a notice, e-learning would already be in the 25th century. But, obviously we’re not there yet.

So I wanted to take a skeptic look at a new service by NBC called iCUE. And I did, but I also think they are on to some great ideas here. What is iCUE? Well, basically, it’s a learning environment built around NBC video archives. It uses social networking to connect with friends and discuss activities, and educational games to make it fun. Not a bad mixture.

One quote caught my eye: “Our mission is to demonstrate the social, cultural, and educational potential of video games.” Well, its about time… or maybe a little late? Grand Theft Mind-Number CCXXVIII might have already calloused millions against even considering the educational potential for video gamers – but let’s hope not.

Elliott Masie also posted a podcast interview today with Adam Jones, Sr. Vice President of Network Development & CFO of NBC News about iCUE, if you want NBC’s take on this. Listen to the podcast over at The Masie Center.

Hopefully, we can see other television networks in the US and abroad get in on this, maybe even all collaborate together? It would be so interesting to see different perspectives on world issues or historical events from India, England, Russia, etc. Just a dream of mine, I guess.

I need to still sign up and kick the tires on it a bit, but just wanted to report on the idea. Only time will tell if this actually works out, but it is fun to test out new stuff, regardless of whether or not the hype is over-the-top.

Matt Crosslin
Matt is currently the Learning Innovation Coordinator with the UT Arlington LINK Research Lab. His research focuses on Learning Theory, Innovation, and learner empowerment. Matt holds a Ph.D. in Learning Technologies from the University of North Texas, a Master of Education in Educational Technology from UT Brownsville, and a Bachelors of Science in Education from Baylor University. His research interests include instructional design, learning pathways, sociocultural theory, heutagogy, virtual reality, and open networked learning. He has a background in instructional design and teaching at both the secondary and university levels and has been an active blogger and conference presenter. He also enjoys networking and collaborative efforts involving faculty, students, administration, and anyone involved in the education process.

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