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Richard Bartle laments poor state of game education in the UK

Samuel Axon

Richard Bartle -- the man who co-invented MUDs at the University of Essex in 1978 -- described the poor state of game-related academic study and education when speaking at the Edinburgh Interactive Festival a few days ago.

Bartle made a distinction between games-focused training (the acquisition of skills by instruction) and games-focused education (the development of understanding through learning). He said that the United Kingdom's colleges are short on education, even though training is available at some universities.

He noted that symptoms of this problem are already apparent: the academic community, such as it is, has been unable to agree (or even engage in cohesive discourse) about the reasons men and women often play as characters of a different sex than their own in MMOs.

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