University of Oulu

Enhancing collaborative learning by means of collaborative serious games : providing requirements to collaborative serious games’ design

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Author: Parzhetskaya, Lyana1
Organizations: 1University of Oulu, Faculty of Education, Department of Educational Sciences and Teacher Education, Educational Sciences
Format: ebook
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 2.2 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Oulu : L. Parzhetskaya, 2014
Publish Date: 2014-09-22
Thesis type: Master's thesis
Tutor: Hyvönen, Pirkko
Reviewer: Hyvönen, Pirkko
Järvelä, Sanna
The current study is a theoretical overview which aim is to define collaborative serious games, identify the problems arising in using and implementation of these games in learning and education and search of ways of improvement of the collaborative process by means of providing the requirements to collaborative serious games’ design. The study makes connections among the following concepts: collaboration, gaming and technology and shows how they can be combined into a one study in order to improve the collaborative process of students and to provide a new solution to the pedagogical problems the modern teachers can face in their teaching practice (e.g. students’ motivation, engagement in learning, self-regulation, developing of argumentation skills, ability to work collaboratively and etc.). The body of the thesis consists of three main parts that provides the basic ideas of serious games, computer-supported collaborative learning and collaborative game-based learning and answering the research questions of the study: ‘What are the benefits of using serious games in education and what are the “pros” and “cons” of using serious games as a technological tool?’, ‘What is collaboration in teaching-learning process and how collaboration can be supported by means of technology?’, ‘What are the main requirements and challenges in design of collaborative serious games?’ and as a conclusion the thesis is completed by answering the primary questions of the study ‘What is collaborative game-based learning?’ and ‘How can learning be enhanced by means of using collaborative serious game?’ First two parts are the analyses of theoretical framework on serious games and collaboration, the third part is a synthesis that represents summarization of theoretical review fulfilled with the author’s both learning and game experience that inspired to elaborate practical advice to designing collaborative serious games on the basis of entertainment games. Two different types of data were used in the study: 1) theoretical framework for digital game-based learning, serious games, collaborative learning, computer-supported collaborative learning, collaborative serious games (digital game-based collaborative learning); 2) empirical data collected from 8 engaging and popular games for entertainment by reading game reviews and analyzing games themselves while playing. On the basis of the results, it can be concluded that game based learning (GBL) has become an alternative to traditional learning concepts. “Serious games” allow reaching the new generation and at the same time to use new technologies for educational purposes as they combine a proper game entertaining component and a training component together. To develop a good collaborative serious game and thereby to satisfy students’ learning needs is a big challenge as gameplay has to fulfill requirements of traditional single player games (fun, narration, video, audio), challenges of multiplayer games (concurrent gaming, interaction) and design of serious game (inclusion of learning content, adaptation and personalization). Moreover, the requirements of collaborative learning have to be considered (group goals, positive interdependence, and individual accountability). After analyzing the theoretical part the criteria for collaborative serious games were elaborated on which analysis of popular games for entertainment was conducted with a purpose to reveal aspects that can be implemented in modern collaborative serious game. The results (adaptation of theoretical framework) are presented in the form of a table, which includes the functions to collaborative serious games, the requirements, practical examples from the entertainment games and its adaptation to collaborative serious games. The study is aimed to encourage teachers and educators see the potential benefit of collaborative serious games and start using them in teaching learning practice; the study provides pedagogical and technological requirements to collaborative serious games design to help game designers develop good collaborative serious games and third, it provides the new results that extend the existing requirements to collaborative serious games with elaborating the requirements to games for entertainment.
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Copyright information: © Lyana Parzhetskaya, 2014. This publication is copyrighted. You may download, display and print it for your own personal use. Commercial use is prohibited.