ARGuing for Multilingual Motivation in Web 2.0: An Evaluation of a Large-Scale European Pilot

ARGuing for Multilingual Motivation in Web 2.0: An Evaluation of a Large-Scale European Pilot

Thomas Hainey (University of the West of Scotland, Scotland), Thomas Connolly (University of the West of Scotland, Scotland), Mark Stansfield (University of the West of Scotland, Scotland) and Liz Boyle (University of the West of Scotland, Scotland)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60960-495-0.ch012
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Abstract

While there are some teachers who are dubious about the benefits of gaming in education, language teachers make great use of simulation/gaming methodologies, and there are many supporting textbooks. While many of the simulations/games used are non-computer based, during recent years, the computer game has become an important development in popular culture. During the same period, there has been an appreciation that computer games can play a significant role in education. This chapter explores the use of one particular type of computer game called an Alternate Reality Game (ARG), a form of interactive narrative, often involving multiple media and game elements. The chapter has developed an ARG to motivate secondary school students to learn a modern foreign language and has piloted this game across Europe in 2009. This chapter will review the empirical literature associated with the utilisation of ARGs for educational purposes and will focus on language learning. The chapter will then present a quantitative and qualitative analysis of student motivation in the pilot study using a developed evaluation framework for games-based learning. The evaluation will focus on learner motivations, aspects of the ARG, player perceptions, skills acquired, attitudes and qualitative data. The chapter will reflect on this analysis and provide directions for future research.
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Previous Research

In this section, we briefly discuss the utilised evaluation framework to evaluate the ARG, intrinsic motivation, the problems and importance of teaching modern foreign languages before discussing previous use of computer games in teaching second languages.

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