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Adding Instructional Features that Promote Learning in a Game-Like Environment


Journal of Educational Computing Research Volume 42, Number 3, ISSN 0735-6331


Students learned about electrical circuits in an arcade-type game consisting of 10 levels. For example, in one level students saw two circuits consisting of various batteries and resistors connected in series or parallel, and had to indicate which one had a higher rate of moving current. On levels 1-9, all students received a correct tone and had points added to their score for a correct answer, or an incorrect tone and a loss of points for an incorrect answer. Students performed more accurately on an embedded transfer test in level 10 if they also had to choose the correct principle for each answer from a list on levels 1-9 (self-explanation condition, d = 0.91), if they received explanative feedback that stated the principle on levels 1-9 (explanative feedback condition, d = 0.68), or both (d = 1.03). Results indicate the role of prompts for reflection and direct guidance as effective supplements to learning by doing in an educational game. (Contains 5 tables and 2 figures.)


Mayer, R.E. & Johnson, C.I. (2010). Adding Instructional Features that Promote Learning in a Game-Like Environment. Journal of Educational Computing Research, 42(3), 241-265. Retrieved December 13, 2019 from .

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