Computer Game-Based Learning and Pedagogical Contexts: Initial Findings from a Field Study
This paper reports the initial findings from an on- going study to explore the effects of various computer game- based learning environments on learning outcomes.For this purpose, three educational computer games based on mathematics and social sciences were played by middle- school students under four pedagogical contexts: collaborative with active facilitation; collaborative without active facilitation; individualistic with active facilitation; and individualistic without active facilitation. The participants were 108 students from classes seven and eight, assigned to four groups each corresponding to one of the four learning conditions. Learning outcomes, as measured by post-game assessment tools specific to each of the three games were set as the dependent variable. The findings suggest that game- based learning is influenced by the pedagogical context within which the actual gameplay activity is situated. Specifically, peer collaboration and facilitator support were found to be effective in promoting learning through computer game-play.