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The Right Kind Of Telling: An Analysis of Feedback and Learning in a Journalism Epistemic Game

David Hatfield
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David Hatfield: Kidaptive, Inc., Mountain View, CA, USA

International Journal of Gaming and Computer-Mediated Simulations (IJGCMS), 2015, vol. 7, issue 2, 1-23

Abstract: Epistemic network analysis provides a useful method for measuring the development of meaningful skills and ways of thinking for participants in epistemic games. This study compares the development of an epistemic frame in a journalism epistemic game, science.net, a role-playing game modeled on authentic journalism practice in which students take on the role of journalists and interact with fellow students and mentors, with a professional journalism practicum. Analyzing the discourse produced by both the game and the practicum through epistemic network analysis (ENA) shows how the virtual internship produced the same type of mentor feedback as the professional practicum on which it was modeled. Players also were able to learn different aspects of journalistic professional expertise as a result of playing the game, and these learning gains continued to be present months after the game was over. Participants in both the simulation and practicum demonstrated significant increases in journalism performance as measured through ENA. Epistemic games, like science.net, have the potential to reproduce key training practices of professional experiences and develop the components of epistemic frames of particular communities. ENA is a valuable tool for assessing the ability of epistemic games to produce these results.

Date: 2015
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