Digital Games, Design, and Learning

Douglas B. Clark, Emily E. Tanner-Smith, Stephen S. Killingsworth
2016 Review of Educational Research  
In this meta-analysis, we systematically reviewed research on digital games and learning for K-16 students. We synthesized comparisons of game versus nongame conditions (i.e., media comparisons) and comparisons of augmented games versus standard game designs (i.e., value-added comparisons). We used random-effects meta-regression models with robust variance estimates to summarize overall effects and explore potential moderator effects. Results from media comparisons indicated that digital games
more » ... ignificantly enhanced student learning relative to nongame conditions ( g = 0.33, 95% confidence interval [0.19, 0.48], k = 57, n = 209). Results from valueadded comparisons indicated significant learning benefits associated with augmented game designs ( g = 0.34, 95% confidence interval [0.17, 0.51], k = 20, n = 40). Moderator analyses demonstrated that effects varied across various game mechanics characteristics, visual and narrative characteristics, and research quality characteristics. Taken together, the results highlight the affordances of games for learning as well as the key role of design beyond medium.
doi:10.3102/0034654315582065 pmid:26937054 pmcid:PMC4748544 fatcat:cxeoivykoneqpe4523p5l3frze