Profiling the Educational Value of Computer Games

Alex Frazer, Alejandra Recio-Saucedo, Lester Gilbert, Gary Wills
pp. 9-27, download


There are currently a number of suggestions for educators to include computer games in formal teaching and learning contexts. Educational value is based on claims that games promote the development of complex learning. Very little research, however, has explored what features should be present in a computer game to make it valuable or conducive to learning. We present a list of required features for an educational game to be of value, informed by two studies, which integrated theories of Learning Environments and Learning Styles. A user survey showed that some requirements were typical of games in a particular genre, while other features were present across all genres. The paper concludes with a proposed framework of games and features within and across genres to assist in the design and selection of games for a given educational scenario.

keywords: game design, games educational value, learning styles and games, learning environments and games

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