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An Experimental Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Endogenous and Exogenous Fantasy in Computer-Based Simulation Training

Vincent F. Mancuso, Katherine Hamilton, Rachel Tesler, Susan Mohammed and Michael McNeese
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Vincent F. Mancuso: Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education, Oak Ridge, TN, USA
Katherine Hamilton: College of Information Sciences and Technology, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA, USA
Rachel Tesler: Department of Psychology, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA, USA
Susan Mohammed: Department of Psychology, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA, USA
Michael McNeese: College of Information Sciences and Technology, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA, USA

International Journal of Gaming and Computer-Mediated Simulations (IJGCMS), 2013, vol. 5, issue 1, 50-65

Abstract: The increased use of simulations in training and education has heightened the need among researchers and practitioners to better understand how simulations impact learning. Given the dearth of empirical research in this area, the purpose of this study was to test the effect of fantasy, one of the most popular attributes of simulations, on multiple outcomes of learning. Data were collected using an experimental design in which the type of fantasy was manipulated (endogenous, exogenous, and no fantasy). Participants included 60 undergraduate teams performing an emergency crisis management simulation. The results of the study showed that fantasy, regardless of type, was a significant predictor of affective learning outcomes. On the other hand, fantasy did not significantly predict behavioral learning outcomes. The authors discuss the implications of these findings for the design and implementation of ludic simulations as well as recommendations for future research.

Date: 2013
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