ESports makes it into Norwegian schools

Bergen, Norway – For Norwegian students at the Garnes Vidaregåande Highschool in Bergen a dream comes true: Their school has announced plans to add eSports to its physical education curriculum. From the next academic year on, the students can play computer games while being graded.

During five hours of tuition a week, the students can learn how to concentrate better, fasten their reflexes and of course how to play the available games, Petter Grahl Johnstadt, who manages the school’s science department told “Dotablast.com”.

The school has started a survey among students, in which they can choose their favourite games for the course, with the two most popular being taught in the classes. All games in the survey are team games and were chosen beforehand by the school. They include such as League of Legends, Counter Striker and Dota 2.

“I think that’s awesome,” says Johann Olafsson, an eleventh-grade Norwegian student. “I really don’t like soccer or handball. But I like eSports and there, I can show my ability to think strategic and to play in a team as well.”

That is also the reason why receiving permission to launch the scheme was possible. The requirements for sports such as soccer or handball also apply to eSports. For example, students will be graded on their ability to communicate while playing team-based games, as well their mastery of strategies and tactics, just as they are when playing traditional PE games.

Anna Hamer, also a student in Bergen, says: “I don’t know what to think about the new course, can you even call that sports? However, I’ve heard that some people earn their money with this kind of games and that there are eSports tournaments with huge financial prizes. Maybe it is not that bad to have it as an optional course.”

Up to now the school in Bergen is the only one in Norway to offer such a class. It is not yet clear how the courses will look like, but the school is currently in the process of recruiting experts, who will help organize the new course. A specialized gaming room with 15 high-end PCs is currently being designed.

However, the students are supposed to participate actively in the course and thereby have also a say in the course’s procedure. To improve their skills, the students will also be allowed to use the school’s gaming facilities in their free time.
17-year-old Olafsson calls it a “revolution!”

 

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