Contrasts in Student Engagement, Meaning-Making, Dislikes, and Challenges in a Discovery-Based Program of Game Design Learning

April 1st, 2011 | RESEARCH

This implementation study explores middle school, high school and community college student experiences in Globaloria, an educational pilot program of game design offered in schools within the U.S. state of West Virginia, supported by a non-profit organization based in New York City called the World Wide Workshop Foundation. This study reports on student engagement, meaning making and critique of the program, in their own words. The study's data source was a mid-program student feedback survey implemented in Pilot Year 2 (2008/2009) of the 5 year design-based research initiative, in which the researchers posed a set of open-ended questions in an online survey questionnaire answered by 199 students. Responses were analyzed using inductive textual analysis. While the initial purpose for data collection was to elicit actionable program improvements as part of a design-based research process, several themes emergent in the data tie into recent debates in the education literature around discovery-based learning. In this paper, we draw linkages from the categories of findings that emerged in student feedback to this literature, and identify new scholarly research questions that can be addressed in the ongoing pilot, the investigation of which might contribute new empirical insights related to recent critiques of discovery based learning, self-determination theory, and the productive failure phenomenon.


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Team Members

Rebecca Reynolds, Author, Rutgers University
Idit Caperton, Author, World Wide Workshop Foundation


Identifier Type: doi
Identifier: 10.1007/s11423-011-9191-8
Identifier Type: issn
Identifier: 1042-1629

Publication: Educational Technology Research & Development
Volume: 59
Number: 2
Page(s): 267

Related URLs

EBSCO Full Text


Audience: Educators | Teachers | Middle School Children (11-13) | Undergraduate | Graduate Students | Youth | Teen (up to 17)
Discipline: Computing and information science | Education and learning science
Resource Type: Peer-reviewed article | Research Products
Environment Type: Games | Simulations | Interactives | Higher Education Programs | Informal | Formal Connections | K-12 Programs | Media and Technology