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The Interplay of Game Design and Pedagogical Mediation in Game-Mediated Japanese Learning

, The University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, United States

IJCALLT Volume 6, Number 4, ISSN 2155-7098 Publisher: IGI Global


Commercial off-the-shelf, or vernacular digital games have been studied in foreign language (FL) pedagogy. However, few have examined how a game design interacts with pedagogical mediation. This study explores the interplay of game design and pedagogical mediation for learners of Japanese. Learners played a vernacular game in Japanese and used activity worksheets and a reference list. Findings from the vocabulary tests and questionnaires show that materials can focus learner attention on particular vocabulary, but that vocabulary functionality also plays a role in learning. In-game vocabulary was identified as primary or secondary based on its necessity for successful game completion. When both types of vocabulary were combined, results showed good retention between the posttest and delayed test. When separated, the primary vocabulary was retained well, but the secondary vocabulary was not retained. This confirms that in-game vocabulary functionality impacts learning and implicates the careful design of supplemental materials to guide FL learners' attention.


Shintaku, K. (2016). The Interplay of Game Design and Pedagogical Mediation in Game-Mediated Japanese Learning. International Journal of Computer-Assisted Language Learning and Teaching, 6(4), 36-55. IGI Global. Retrieved December 6, 2019 from .



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