Alexandria Digital Research Library

Training transferable knowledge with games

Author:
Pilegard, Celeste Cristine
Degree Grantor:
University of California, Santa Barbara. Psychology
Degree Supervisor:
Richard E. Mayer
Place of Publication:
[Santa Barbara, Calif.]
Publisher:
University of California, Santa Barbara
Creation Date:
2016
Issued Date:
2016
Topics:
Educational psychology, Cognitive psychology, Mass communication, and Educational technology
Keywords:
STEM education
Educational games
Computer games
Spatial skills
Learning strategies
Transfer
Genres:
Dissertations, Academic and Online resources
Dissertation:
Ph.D.--University of California, Santa Barbara, 2016
Description:

Despite popular enthusiasm for using video games in the classroom, a review of the research reveals a frequent lack of meaningful (i.e., transferable) learning outcomes resulting from video game play (Mayer, 2014). One explanation could be that video game environments are fast and forward-moving, whereas learning that leads to transfer is reflective, effortful, and requires integrating new information with prior knowledge. What can be added to computer games to facilitate transferable learning? In Experiments 1 and 2, participants played a computer game called Cache 17, which has a narrative cover story about finding stolen art as well as instructional information about electromechanical devices. The player's main goal can be to win (i.e., find the art) rather than to understand the instructional content (i.e., understand how a wet cell battery works).

In Experiments 1 and 2, students who filled out worksheets about the devices in Cache 17 during game play outperformed a control group without worksheets on a transfer test, demonstrating that the worksheets helped students focus their limited cognitive resources on the learning material. Experiments 3a and 3b investigated how to train transferable spatial skills with Tetris. Previous research shows that Tetris experts are better than non-experts at mentally rotating Tetris shapes, but nothing else. In Experiment 3a, participants completed a series of lessons and worksheets on Tetris problem-solving with the goal of building a declarative knowledge base to use as a basis for transferable spatial skills. One group completed these lessons and played Tetris and one group played Tetris only. Pre- and post-training tests measured spatial and cognitive skills related to Tetris play.

Experiment 3b added an inactive control condition that took the pre- and post-training measures but did not complete any training. The results of Experiments 3a and 3b indicated no benefit of playing Tetris with or without additional training on gains in any spatial or cognitive measure when controlling for pre-training performance. This research helps develop principles for how transferable learning can be facilitated with games.

Physical Description:
1 online resource (114 pages)
Format:
Text
Collection(s):
UCSB electronic theses and dissertations
ARK:
ark:/48907/f3zw1m25
ISBN:
9781369339727
Catalog System Number:
990047189820203776
Rights:
Inc.icon only.dark In Copyright
Copyright Holder:
Celeste Pilegard
File Description
Access: Public access
Pilegard_ucsb_0035D_13110.pdf pdf (Portable Document Format)