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Foundation for problem-based gaming. Presenter: Hsiao-lan Lee Professor: Ming-Puu Chen Date: 01 / 19 / 2009. Kiili, K. (2007). Foundation for problem-based gaming. British Journal of Educational Technology, 38 (3), 394-404. Introduction (1/3).

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foundation for problem based gaming

Foundation for problem-based gaming

Presenter: Hsiao-lan Lee

Professor: Ming-Puu Chen

Date: 01 / 19 / 2009

Kiili, K. (2007). Foundation for problem-based gaming. British Journal of Educational Technology, 38(3), 394-404.

introduction 1 3
Introduction (1/3)
  • Higher education often has not managed to develop students’ abilities to apply their knowledge in complex, ill-defined practical situations.
    • difficulties in applying theoretical subject knowledge in solving ill-defined problems
    • the lack of contextualising or anchoring the content being learned
  • Properly designed games can be used to answer these needs.
    • focus on the game design issues separated from learning
    • not utilize the powerfulness of games as an interactive context-free media
  • The field of educational technology lacks research on how to design game environments.
    • foster knowledge construction
    • deepen understanding and problem solving
introduction 2 3
Introduction (2/3)
  • Kiili (2005) developed the experiential gaming model:
    • founded on the principles of experiential learning (Kolb, 1984) and constructivism (Phillips, 1995)
    • not provide a clear account for reflective thinking that can be considered as the key factor in problem-based learning
  • The most important contribution of the experiential gaming model to the educational game design is the design principles of engagement (Kiili & Lainema, 2006).
  • The aim of this research is to develop an empirically allocated model about problem-based gaming.
    • provide means to design pedagogically meaningful games
    • evaluate the proposed model
introduction 3 3
Introduction (3/3)
  • Problem-based gaming model
    • PBG = PBL + Game + Experiential Learning + Constructivism
  • test the strategy and possible hypotheses
  • observe the consequences of the learner’s actions
  • base on learner’sprior experiences
  • form an appropriate playing strategy



  • govern variables in order to generate better playing strategies and solutions to problems
  • base on only one particular strategy
  • strengthens only those schemata that are related to this strategy


  • recapture the experience,
  • think about it,
  • mull it over and evaluate it
  • provide the feedback from a learner’s actions
  • support reflective thinking and knowledge construction by focusing a player’s attention to relevant information

Figure1: Problem-based gaming model describes the learning process with games

  • Participants:
    • 12 students of Turku School of Economics
    • age between 20-30
    • All had some experiences about other business games before.
  • Materials:
    • Realgame business simulation game (Lainema, 2004)
    • give learners a realistic view of business processes through case-based learning
    • reflect realistic time-dependent decision making
  • Measures:
    • semi-structured interviews
    • two themes: games in education and problem-based gaming
results and discussion 1 4
Results and discussion (1/4)
  • About educational games:
    • Educational games aroused interest among players.
      • All players liked the playing experience of Realgame.
    • The role of the games was seen more like applying previously learned knowledge than studying totally new issues.
    • Games seem to support the perception of things as a whole.
results and discussion 2 4
Results and discussion (2/4)
  • About the main principles of the PBG approach:
    • Learners saw that authenticity is a very important element in educational games.
      • Some simplifications needed to be made in simulation games, but did not disturb their playing experiences.
      • Gaming strategy is based on trial and error.  aware about their incomplete strategy and realize that they could have utilized a more strategic approach
    • All learners felt that it was fruitful to play the game in teams.
      • Knowledge sharing during gaming facilitated learning.
    • Learners felt that games are effective because they involve learning by doing.
      • involve with the experience
      • not absorb knowledge by rote learning
results and discussion 3 4
Results and discussion (3/4)
  • About the structure of the PBG model:
    • The results clearly supported the structure of the PBG model.
      • actively form playing strategies and hypotheses and test them
    • Some learners were more sensitive for double-loop learning and were willing to even take risks to discover more optimal strategies.
    • One thing that may lead to single-loop learning is the lack of challenge.
      • virtual players that are challenging to beat in to the game
      • motivate the leading human team to perform better
results and discussion 4 4
Results and discussion (4/4)
  • About reflection in PBG:
    • It is important to consider the game elements that triggered reflection.
      • The demand of products was experienced as a basic trigger of reflection.
    • The most powerful thing that pushed learners to consider their performance was the conflicts that they faced.
      • The conflicts in the game should be designed properly.
    • Factor disturbing reflection:
      • game design: Too fast playing tempo does not provide a possibility for learners to reflecton the consequences of their actions appropriately.
      • the complexity of the game:

 include new concepts and many changing variables

 The user interface requires much cognitive processing.

cognitive overload

  • PBG model can help to address the gap between pedagogy and game design.
  • Reflection that arouses double-loop learning enhances learning because learners tend to aspire to a better understanding of the problem domain by actively testing different strategies.
  • Conflicts and the performance were found to be the most important triggers of reflection.
  • Too fast a game tempo and cognitive overload can disturb reflection process.
  • Collaboration and learning by doing were found to be most important characteristics of effective educational games.
  • Games were seen as good tools to understand cause and consequence chains.