Game Development Reference
more informal, less didactic styles of address (as
cited in Kara & Yesilyurt, 2008). The purpose of
edutainment is to attract and hold the attention of
the learners by engaging their emotions through a
computer monitor full of vividly colored anima-
tions. It involves an interactive pedagogy and,
totally depends on an obsessive insistence that
learning is inevitably ''fun'' (Kara & Yesilyurt,
Games and schooling were very separate in the
past. However, according to the 2006 America's
Digital Schools research report (as cited in Ren-
wick, 2006), school districts report using 27,898
portable gaming devices in 2006, and estimate
that the number would grow to 148,451 units in
2011. The latest findings by the Entertainment
Software Association (ESA) (2009), representing
US computer and video game publishers, revealed
that 68% of American households play computer
or video games (as cited in Paraskeva, Mysirlaki,
& Papagianni, 2010). Since games can intrinsically
motivate students, even new generations of more
powerful devices are emerging, and the trend of
gaming-based learning will likely continue to
reach students and get them more interested in
learning, and computer games may soon be widely
integrated in schools.
Anchor all learning activities to a larger
task or problem.
Support the learner in developing owner-
ship for the overall problem or task.
Design an authentic task.
Design the task and learning environment
to reflect the complexity of the environ-
ment that students should be able to func-
tion in at the end of learning.
Give the learner ownership of the process
used to develop a solution.
Design the learning environment to sup-
port and challenge the learner's thinking.
Encourage testing ideas against alternative
views and alternative contexts.
Provide opportunity for, and support re-
flection on, both the content learned, and
the learning process itself (p. 3).
Hypermedia technologies facilitate construc-
tivist approaches (Moreno-Ger, et al, 2008). The
concept of constructivist learning could have
important implications for the use of computer
games. It is aimed at fostering and guiding learn-
ing and activating cognitive processing that leads
to understanding. Shen (2008) pointed out that
educational computer games can be designed
for use in an environment that allows students
to apply the knowledge they have acquired. For
example, the principle of constructivism is suit-
able for the environment of business simulation
games because the users put the existing business
management knowledge to use in order to make
use of the software to establish a new concept
and emphasize on the importance of interaction
between teachers and students. How to foster
constructive learning becomes a major concern
for developing educational computer games.
Constructivist learning theories posit that knowl-
edge is built by the learner, not supplied by the
teacher (as cited in Kebritchi & Hirumi, 2008).
The constructivist view of teaching and learning
is a commonly accepted framework for develop-
ing appropriate strategies for promoting student-
centered learning environments (Goldman &
Torrisi-Steele, 2002). According to Savery and
Duffy (1996), effective instructional design of
multimedia interactivities may be based on eight
constructivist principles. They are:
Promoting Learning Styles
Kovalchick & Dawson (2004) state, “Learning
styles are the diverse ways in which people take
in, process, and understand information” (p. 418).