The problem identified in this dissertation is that both practicing and experienced teachers encounter various challenges while integrating digital games in the existing educational programs since most of them lack basic knowledge about sport events. Besides, there is fear that the present teacher educators have failed to take into account the significance of video games in the future of learning (Wu, 2015). This situation has made teachers to shy away from using digital games as teaching and learning aids in the classroom. Video gaming is currently on the rise among students; hence, it should be included in the curriculum and education systems (Wu, 2015).
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Although such games are viewed as advantageous to video players, their genres that can be used as sources of learning have not been included in the learning processes due to varying perceptions, experiences, attitudes, and self-efficacy amongst the teachers (Koh, Kin, Wadhwa, & Lim, 2012). The number of pupils who join K-12 and higher education systems with prior computer games experience is increasing significantly.
Theories used to support the Research
The researcher has further elaborated the application of learning theories and their linkage to the use of video games in changing student behaviors (Wu, 2015). The behaviorist theory emphasizes that learning happens due to repeated practices based on a defined pattern of stimuli and response. These behaviors are majorly observed through interactions. Cognitive development theories are also applied due to their reasoning aspect that is significant in problem-solving (Gros, 2007).
Through video games, learners can easily construct, conceptualize knowledge, and integrate new information into the existing schema. The researcher has also included constructive social theories that are based on interactive learning techniques (Gros, 2007). Lastly, video games enable learners to gain experience and ensure that learners gain knowledge through experimental techniques (Gros, 2007).
Assumptions made by the Researcher
The researcher assumes that digital game-based learning in schools is made difficult due to barriers that include teacher’s experience, attitudes, and self-efficacy among others. The methodology used requires both qualitative and quantitative designs. Components of both attitudinal and pilot test surveys were also included in the DGBL adoption (Zin, Yue, & Jaafar, 2009). The results obtained from the study indicated that teachers at different levels reacted differently towards the usage of the DGBL due to their gaming experiences, attitudes, self-efficacy, and perceived challenges and barriers.
The teachers were also receptive to using digital games in teaching and reinforcing skills in students who had also gained prior knowledge of such technology. Therefore, the findings of the research should be embraced in learning institutions (Brom, Šisler, & Slavík, 2010). To change the negative perceptions of the teacher towards the use of video games as learning aids, they should be provided with knowledge about their application in classroom sessions to gain skills and experience.
Critical Review of the Literature
The study presented in the dissertation adopted a quasi-experimental concurrent triangulation mixed-method design. As evidenced in the dissertation, both qualitative and quantitative data gathering techniques were used (Wu, 2015). Such methods enabled the researcher to cross-validate various study choices considered in the study. This approach enabled the researcher to realize triangulated findings for explaining the current problem in the implementation of video games in classroom settings. The participants involved in the research included both graduate and undergraduate learners at Midwestern University (Wu, 2015).
The literature review presented has captured various components of the dissertation that are limited to the objectives on the barriers to introducing video gaming in learning processes. Although such ideas have been borrowed from other literary sources, a problem arises whereby more information on learning fields such as health, social sciences, and humanities has not been taken into account (Brom, Šisler, & Slavík, 2010). However, the research only provides insight into the perceptions of teachers, their attitudes, and other barriers to the use of video gaming for learning purposes. It also omits the perceptions of learners and the types of unique skills they gain from using video games in learning.
How the Research informs Instructional Technology
The research informs instructional technology by encouraging teachers to determine the appropriate short-length educational video games to be integrated into pedagogy (Wu, 2015). Some gaps have been noted concerning the use of video games in learning. The gaps include the lack of such programs in classrooms, especially due to the discernments amongst the teachers. Besides, there elaborate studies on video gaming and its applications in schools (Koh et al., 2012).
The dissertation also provides more clarity on the perceived barriers that hinder the usage of video games in learning. Therefore, the review as indicated in the dissertation is understandable. The perceptions of the usage of the DGBL in the learning process have also been identified to vary among the teachers. The enjoyment of using such tools does not guarantee 100 percent concentration of both learners and teachers in the classroom (Baek, 2008).
Consequently, the literature in the dissertation has covered the information that is beneficial in answering the questions and objectives of the study. On the historical aspect concerning digital gaming, the research is relevant due to the current trends in the increased use of video games by children, students, and adults for learning purposes (Papastergiou, 2009).
Areas listed for Future Research
The first area listed for future research is the determination of whether there exists a mismatch between the choice of the appropriate video games and existing teaching philosophies amongst the instructors. Teachers should be aware of various designs and learning principles that guide the implementation of digital games in the classroom setting (Wu, 2015). Besides, there is a need to conduct detailed research on the application of video games in pedagogy.
More information should be provided on video games to reveal deeper content. Video games are based on the instructional theory that ensures instructors and learners contextualize various scenes; hence, practical knowledge of designing and critical thinking can be gained (Papastergiou, 2009). This objective can be realized by using a larger sample size to cover nation-wide research on the experiences, self-efficacy, and attitudes of teachers towards the implementation of video games in schools (Wu, 2015).
Findings of the Research
The research found that active game teachers were more interested in the integration of digital games into the education system. Such teachers were noted to value active instructional and learning activities as compared to their non-gamer colleagues. However, it is evidenced that teachers who have prior knowledge about games tend to support the idea of incorporating video games into instructional activities (Wu, 2015). The findings of the research also reveal various challenges and barriers to the implantation of digital games in pedagogy. The use of video games in learning processes is determined by the familiarity, perceptions, and ease of use of the DGBL by the teachers. As the current technology shifts to a more digitalized phase, children are increasingly becoming conversant with video games.
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Baek, Y (2008). What hinders teachers from using computer and video games in the classroom? Exploring factors inhibiting the uptake of computer and video games. Cyber Psychology & Behavior, 11(6), 665-671.
Brom, C., Šisler, V., & Slavík, R. (2010). Implementing digital game-based learning in schools: augmented learning environment of ‘Europe 2045’. Multimedia systems, 16(1), 23-41.
Gros, B. (2007). Digital games in education: The design of games-based learning environments. Journal of Research on Technology in Education, 40(1), 23-38.
Koh, E., Kin, Y., Wadhwa, B., & Lim, J. (2012). Teacher perceptions of games in Singapore schools. Simulation & Gaming, 43(1), 51-66.
Papastergiou, M. (2009). Digital game-based learning in high school computer science education: Impact on educational effectiveness and student motivation. Computers & Education, 52(1), 1-12.
Wu, M. (2015). Teachers’ experience, attitudes, self-efficacy and perceived barriers to the use of digital game-based learning: A survey study through the lens of a typology of educational digital games. Michigan: Michigan State University Press.
Zin, M., Yue, W., & Jaafar, A. (2009). Digital game-based learning (DGBL) model and development methodology for teaching history. WSEAS transactions on computers, 8(2), 322-333.