Terça-feira, 27 de Outubro de 2009
PdD Homework (23 Oct)

I don't know which tags should I use. Bah. Let's get this rolling.

 

 

Who will be the participants on your study? How will they be selected?

 

I have no idea who they are. I know one thing for sure: they speak greek, I don't.

 

Jokes aside, here's what I know about them: they're the first year undergraduate students from the Department of Physical Education & Sport Science (DPESS for short) of the University of Thessaly, and they're part of this compulsory course named "Computers", which is where we're going to implement this game prototype.

 

You remember when I explained my greek mentor's situation with these students in another post, right? Students would often becom bored with this course, especially during the theory classes. Working with computers is one thing, getting a lecture about computers is diferent.

 

There were many studies about games being introduzed in curriculums in schools and high schools, but I'm not aware of many cases done within universities. These are not children, they're young adults facing their first year of college.

 

What I know is, they're part of the most recent generation being shaped by technology, constantly connected, and (hopefully) ready to learn something new. Claire Raines dubbed this generation as the Millenials, but they're also known by other definitions, such as the Internet Generation, Digital Generation, or even Nintendo Generation (I was more of a Sega fangirl).

They're described by Raines as "sociable, optimistic, talented, well-educated, collaborative, open-minded, influential, and achievement-oriented." They're impatient, and their learning preference center around "teamwork, technology, structure, entertainment & excitement, experiential activities" (all being quoted from her article, it's worth a look)

 

Do those characteristics apply to the students I'm going to meet in Greece? Are they well aquaitanced with technology as any other "Millenial"? Would they like to learn through a course with a lecture, a game, or another multimedia enviroment?

I'll only be able to answer these questions when I meet them face to face.

 

 

What data do I need for your studies?

 

I'm assuming (but still need to confirm) the students' knowledge acquired with the game and with the others methods is going to be tested, somehow. That way, we can determinated how successful the game will be in educating, or at least, incentivating students.

 

First, I need to know how are these students before hand. And then I'll need to know what they think of the game:

 

- Overall Appeal

- Quality of user interface

- Accessibility of learning material and questions

- Educational value

(these were the evaluation elements my greek mentor used for one of her studies, as described in her article)

 

 

 

How are you going to collect such data? Which instruments are you going to use?

 

I'm thinking of questionnaries. They can't be too complex, but it's a possible way to find out what the students think of the game. At least, in a qualitative way.

 

Then we'll have those knowledge tests too, but that is something I'll only be able to take a look next year.

 

And I think stablishing a discussion group would not be a bad idea. I can talk with them individually, but in group, they can generate a hivemind of common opinions torwards the game, confirm "Millenial" characteristics among them, etc.

If we get to do discussion groups, then we should make one before introducing the game, and one after the game. Of course, my main obstacle here is the language.

 

I should be using typical instruments to retrieve data, like NVivo. If we could implement data tracking inside the game, and keep a database updated with student gaming scores and the such, it would be definitly help a lot with the research, but I fear for my programing skills (We're planning on building the game using Flash/Actionscript, but how far can I go?)

 

 

That is all, for now.

 




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