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Reacting to the Past: Extended Simulations and the Learning Experience in Political Science
Unformatted Document Text:  is no guarantee these will always work. In particular, the need for the students to interact out of class to prepare for debates may make the games more problematic for institutions with large numbers of non-traditional students. That said, the use of Reacting games in my seminars has been a success. It provided the stu- dents with a learning experience quite unlike what they had been exposed to before and, if their testimony and the Cornerstone survey results are to be credited, achieved many of the pedagogi- cal goals set for the course. As an added bonus, it also appears to have stimulated their interest in political science; seven of the students in the two classes have decided to major in political sci- ence as a result of the course. I have since used another Reacting game, New York City in the American Revolution, 1775 - 76 (Offutt 2006), as the opening section in my course in American government, again with good success. I believe that other instructors - and their students - could achieve benefits similar to those I have outlined here. 15

Authors: Lightcap, Tracy.
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is no guarantee these will always work. In particular, the need for the students to interact out of
class to prepare for debates may make the games more problematic for institutions with large
numbers of non-traditional students.
That said, the use of Reacting games in my seminars has been a success. It provided the stu-
dents with a learning experience quite unlike what they had been exposed to before and, if their
testimony and the Cornerstone survey results are to be credited, achieved many of the pedagogi-
cal goals set for the course. As an added bonus, it also appears to have stimulated their interest in
political science; seven of the students in the two classes have decided to major in political sci-
ence as a result of the course. I have since used another Reacting game, New York City in the
American Revolution, 1775 - 76 (Offutt 2006), as the opening section in my course in American
government, again with good success. I believe that other instructors - and their students - could
achieve benefits similar to those I have outlined here.
15


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