Combining Game-flow and Learning Objectives in Educational Games
2014 (English)In: Proceedings of the 8th European Conference on Games Based Learning / [ed] Busch, C., Academic Conferences and Publishing International Limited , 2014, 528-536 p.Conference paper (Refereed)
Games-based learning is a young discipline and there is no consensus on how learning objectives should be integrated into learning games. Utilisation of the educational content in digital games is an increasing trend that sometimes has been described as a mad rush where sound educational principles often are absent. A design of educational games with a careless mix of game mechanics and learning content could also result in so called "Shavian reversals", an outcome where the offspring inherits the worst characteristics of both parents. What guidelines are important in a learning model, for a successful combination of engaging game stories and appropriate learning content? Designing educational games should include all the stages of the software design process. Also, there are specific problems in the design of educational games that need to be addressed. These are related to the integration of learning content and game mechanics in games, and the technologies required for its implementation. The paper will take a dual perspective on flow and cooperative learning theories. When embedding the learning principles within the design of the digital games, the process has to consider the role of knowledge, meaning and reflective learning process. It will also suggest guidance from those supporting the learning. Also, the way that the mechanics are implemented in an educational game, are measured using specified metrics and a novel technique called learning analytics. The paper discusses modern approaches of educational game design and their effectiveness in keeping the game both educational and engaging. It also proposes specific ways that evaluation metrics are used in game analytics and how they can provide feedback to check if the educational objectives are achieved. Furthermore, new ideas are suggested on how to combine game-flow and learning objectives in educational games, with a result that would not lead to the Shavian reversal effect, but instead will keep the game both educational and engaging. A combined script model is presented in which each learning objective is interpreted as a game objective and a game process. The model is structured as a sequence of activities combining learning objectives and game actions. Furthermore, there is an exemplification of how the suggested script model might be implemented in role-playing and casual games.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Academic Conferences and Publishing International Limited , 2014. 528-536 p.
, Proceedings of the European Conference on Games-Based Learning, ISSN 2049-0992
Game-based learning, Game design, Game-flow, Learning games, Digital games
Research subject Computer and Systems Sciences
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-108677ISI: 000351435200065ISBN: 978-1-910309-57-5OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-108677DiVA: diva2:760055
8th European Conference on Games Based Learning – ECGBL, 2014, Berlin, Germany, 9-10 October 2014