Game Theory as it Pertains to Higher Education

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Game theory is such a useful tool in every aspect of its capabilities. For teachers, the use of such a tool enables strategic lesson planning which can be extremely useful in holding the attention of students who may become bored or may not connect with the material. This is important because such students often experience a domino effect and not only perform poorly in that particular class, but have an overall less enjoyable experience. With game theory, Teachers take a deeper look into the “what if’s” and can plan in advance what to do should the “what if” occurs. 


For students, game theory is equally as insightful, and learning really takes on a new life as it becomes more interactive, more hands on, and more exciting. Consider labs for example. Students are able to simulate real life events and test the outcomes of their predictions. Students are given the opportunity to select the method of problem-solving they believe to be the best solution and quickly see the outcome of their choices. For many, this is the best way to learn. Students who are visual learners practice or study by playing. Then, they are rewarded by checking their results instantaneously. Likewise, students who learn by doing are also given the same opportunities to learn the way that is best for their needs.


One of the benefits of game theory is a greater retention level for students. It’s no secret that repetition increases performance. While such a concept as over-learning does exist, the opposite, under-learning, is much more likely to end in negative results, lower grades, and a host of negative effects. There is a sweet spot for the number of repetitions it takes to retain information effectively. More benefits include students being more engaged, more efficient programs, and processes that can be reviewed at greater depths making for more informed and higher quality programming overall.