The Future of Digital Game-Based Learning (DGBL) in Shaping Intercultural Communication Competency

The Future of Digital Game-Based Learning (DGBL) in Shaping Intercultural Communication Competency

Ahmed Karam Yousof (Pennsylvania State University, USA) and Nahla Abousamra (Indiana University of Pennsylvania, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-7949-6.ch004
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Although intercultural communication has long been a vital issue, accelerating globalization and immigration over the past century have increased its importance. Therefore, it is imperative that education and training in intercultural communication are created and continually evaluated for effectiveness. One operative new strategy is the use of digital game-based learning (DGBL) in intercultural communication training. This chapter aims at explaining—from theoretical and practical perspectives—the effectiveness of DGBL to enhance intercultural communication skills. The chapter expounds on the effectiveness of utilizing DGBL as a pedagogical tool in education and training. It then concludes with demonstrating the research results of using HERO I® as an example of the effectiveness of DGBL for cultural competency training. This interconnectedness between theory and practice projects the future of DGBL in shaping intercultural communication competency.
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The background in this chapter incorporates two essential sections that are related to intercultural communication and digital game-based learning (DGBL) as a potential training tool for enhancing intercultural communication competency. Accordingly, the two main sections that shape the review of the literature are DGBL and pedagogy, and intercultural communication training.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Game Play: Free movement within rigid structure. In game play, free movement stems from the strategies that the player adopts during the game in order to meet the winning condition of the game.

Values: A set of abstract and general principles that guide behavior. Individual values are, in effect, judgments about what is right or wrong and good or bad.

Subjective Culture: Any cultural aspect that is not tangible, such as ideology, values, and social roles.

Objective Culture: The tangible aspects of culture such as food, costumes and outfits, and even the names people give to things. It is typically found in the form of practices (e.g., ways of talking or walking), objects, and ritual or religious objects (material culture).

Cultural Training: The design and delivery of intercultural activities that make trainees able to experience different cultural aspects of the host culture.

Interpersonal Communication: The process people follow within a certain context to exchange information through verbal and non-verbal messages.

Intercultural Communication: The communication process that happens between individuals or groups of different linguistic and cultural origins. The differences in cultural origins entail differences in language, values, social norms, and perceptions.

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