Integrating console games into educational settings has been increasingly both applauded and criticized. The vast interest in game playing of people of all ages appears to be a motivating source for educators and trainers to find ways to effectively integrate serious games into their educational settings in order to inspire their own students towards the content they are providing in their classrooms. In the past few years, the surge in the interest in using mobile devices in the classroom has followed a similar track to that of console games, perhaps because their constructs appear to mirror those found in those console-based games. These similarities go beyond the coincidental fact that many of the most popular mobile apps also happen to follow game-like patterns. For this reason, the authors suggest that the need exists to examine the educational validity of the instructional apps that are being downloaded onto mobile devices using the same rationale that was previously extended in earlier studies. Using this premise, the researchers based their hypothesis that mobile apps can offer a unique and facile means to “gamify” a classroom. Based on a review of the current state of affairs in commercial off-the-shelf (OTS) apps, there may be too many on the market that profess to be “educational” when, in fact, they do little to actually support acquiring content knowledge. The authors suggest that this possible overabundance has contributed to the need to create a means for game designers to properly and accurately evaluate in a formative way what contributions their games would potentially make to education and training. The current study focuses both evaluating the value of using RETAIN for app designers to formatively assess their potential constructs and to inform educators as to which apps best meet the instructional and student learning needs once those apps enter the market.
Journal of Formative Design in Learning – Springer Journals
Published: May 9, 2017
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