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Digital Game based Learning for Undergraduate Calculus Education: Immersion, Calculation, and Conceptual Understanding

Yu-Hao Lee, Norah Dunbar, Keri Kornelson, Scott N. Wilson, Ryan Ralston, Milos Savic, Sepideh Stewart, Emily Lennox, William Thompson and Javier Elizondo
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Yu-Hao Lee: University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA
Norah Dunbar: University of California Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA, USA
Keri Kornelson: University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, USA
Scott N. Wilson: University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, USA
Ryan Ralston: University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, USA
Milos Savic: University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, USA
Sepideh Stewart: University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, USA
Emily Lennox: University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, USA
William Thompson: University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, USA
Javier Elizondo: University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, USA

International Journal of Gaming and Computer-Mediated Simulations (IJGCMS), 2016, vol. 8, issue 1, 13-27

Abstract: This study has two goals: First, to investigate the effectiveness of using a digital game to teach undergraduate-level calculus in terms of improving task immersion, sense of control, calculation skills, and conceptual understanding. Second, to investigate how feedback and visual manipulation can facilitate conceptual understanding of calculus. 132 undergraduate students participated in a controlled lab experiment and were randomly assigned to either a game-playing condition, a practice quiz condition, or a no-treatment control condition. The authors collected survey data and behavioral-tracking data recorded by the server during gameplay. The results showed that students who played the digital game reported highest task immersion but not sense of control. Students in the game condition also performed significantly better in conceptual understanding compared to students who solved a practice quiz and the control group. Gameplay behavioral-tracking data was used to examine the effects of visual manipulation and feedback on conceptual understanding.

Date: 2016
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