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Encouraging engagement in game-based learning

Whitton, Nicola (2011) Encouraging engagement in game-based learning. International Journal of Game-Based Learning, 1 (1). pp. 75-84. ISSN 2155-6857

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Abstract

It is a common misconception that game-based learning is, by its very nature, engaging for the majority of learners. This is not necessarily the case, particularly for learners in Higher Education who may need to be persuaded of the value of learning games. For some learners, games may simply not be perceived as engaging–either in terms of an initial motivation to play or sustained participation. This paper describes the Alternate Reality Games for Orientation, Socialisation and Induction (ARGOSI) project, which experienced unexpectedly low motivation and participation. Despite extensive marketing, only a small fraction of potential students participated in the game and of those a far smaller number were highly engaged. Evidence from the project is presented and the reasons for the lack of engagement in the game created are considered. Finally the paper reflects on ways in which engagement with game-based learning might be encouraged.

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