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How Could the Use of Game Elements Help Students' Affective and Cognitive Engagement During Game Play?

How Could the Use of Game Elements Help Students' Affective and Cognitive Engagement During Game Play?
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Author(s): Ruth S. Contreras-Espinosa (University of Vic-Central University of Catalonia, Vic, Spain) and Jose Luis Eguia Gomez (Polytechnic University of Catalonia, Barcelona, Spain)
Copyright: 2020
Volume: 13
Issue: 1
Pages: 13
Source title: Journal of Information Technology Research (JITR)
Editor(s)-in-Chief: Francisco José García-Peñalvo (University of Salamanca, Spain)
DOI: 10.4018/JITR.2020010102

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Abstract

Researchers have posited different types of engagement, distinguishing between behavioral, cognitive, and affective engagement and theoretical frameworks have helped explain the psychological aspects of engagement. However, game researchers should examine all types of engagement using multiple methodologies as a means to understand what students are learning from educational games during game play. Conclusive results require psychological aspects and learning characteristics to be considered, but also require a deeper understanding of the intricate links between learning and game mechanics for engagement. This article presents the findings from a qualitative study with thirty participants that focuses on the importance of affective and cognitive engagement during game play with educational games. To do this, the researchers used Ferran Alsina, a game that would help to develop learning competences of primary education skills. Researchers obtained the experiences of students through a game play session, basic game metrics, think-aloud protocol, observation and focus groups. Results shows that the game provided participants an active participation associated with both affective and cognitive engagement. Without attention to cognition the atuhors risk losing valuable data that relate to a student's learning. Researchers should consider multiple qualitative methodologies and game play experience analysis as student experiences are qualitative.

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