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What is Parasocial Interactions

Handbook of Research on Improving Learning and Motivation through Educational Games: Multidisciplinary Approaches
Interactions with a mediated/fictional character creating an affective relationship.
Published in Chapter:
Understanding Serious Gaming: A Psychological Perspective
Priscilla Haring (VU University Amsterdam, The Netherlands), Dimitrina Chakinska (VU University Amersterdam, The Netherlands), and Ute Ritterfeld (Technical University of Dortmund, Germany)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60960-495-0.ch020
This chapter argues the importance of understanding the process of serious gaming, i.e. playing a game with a purpose other than solely entertainment. Taking a psychological perspective, it focuses on the effects of the game rather than the game itself. Emphasis is put on the experience of enjoyment as a core element of a successful entertainment gaming experience, which, in turn, is a prerequisite for a successful learning experience. To identify enjoyment factors in gaming, a hierarchical model is presented which is based on empirical evidence. Based upon the Entertainment-Education theory, the authors propose a paradigm shift from motivation for game playing to implicit educational goals in serious games. A successful blending of entertainment experiences with educationally enriched content is assumed to be mediated by the experience of presence within media. Furthermore, storytelling and character development as well as socially shared experiences are identified as valuable areas for future serious game development.
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