“Let’s say you can scale the best Econ 101 lecture and not a lecture, not some guy standing in a room lecturing but let’s say it has all the sights and sounds and video and visual components of Call of Duty 3, but now it’s Econ 101. Or instead of learning about WW II, you’re fighting in WW II.”
That was Tim Pawlenty, former Minnesota governor and possible future Republican candidate for U.S. president, testing the campaign waters in a speech yesterday at Iowa State University, according to The Des Moines Register. Mr. Pawlenty said he wanted to improve college education. He also said he wanted to cut spending. When asked how he would do both, he came up with the full-featured video-game version of an introductory economics course. Better instruction, he said, without the bricks-and-mortar expenses of the usual university. He wouldn’t replace all traditional institutions with elaborate virtual-reality scenarios, but he said technology is a way out of the budget crunch.
If you are keeping track, there are 607 days left until Election Day in 2012.