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Using an alternate reality game to facilitate student engagement during orientation

Abstract

An alternate reality game was designed to facilitate transition and engagement amongst students commencing a tertiary preparation program at a regional university in Australia.  The design of the game was informed by a student engagement framework which proposes four psychosocial constructs which mediate engagement at the intersection between student and institutional influences: self-efficacy, belonging, well-being, and emotion.  The 108 participants completed a survey which measured these constructs prior to the commencement of the game.  Game players (n = 13) were surveyed again immediately after the game.  The results of statistical analysis indicated that game players reported a greater sense of well-being and more positive emotions than the group surveyed before the game. 

Published:
Pages:13 to 22
Section: Articles
0 citation(s) in Web of Science

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Author Biographies

University of the Sunshine Coast
Australia Australia

Sarah Glencross is the Coordinator of Access and HEPPP Evaluation in the Access and Diversity Unit at USC.  Through her work Sarah contributes to USC’s widening participation and equity strategies which focus on ensuring the university is responsive in working with students, particularly those from groups which are underrepresented in tertiary education.  Sarah has research interests in student wellbeing and academic success.  She is also currently a PhD Candidate at USC; her thesis is examining internet use and decision making by people with an intellectual disability. 

University of the Sunshine Coast
Australia Australia

Sandra (Sandie) Elsom is an Associate Lecturer in enabling education at USC. Her work focuses on the integration of games into the higher education curriculum. She is particularly interested in the potential for using alternate reality games to create an engaging and effective social learning experience.

University of the Sunshine Coast
Australia Australia

Marguerite Westacott (B Vis Arts, Grad Dip Ed, MEdSt, MMH) is an associate lecturer in enabling education at USC. Marguerite’s research and practice focus on embedding proactive approaches to promoting mental health, wellbeing and career development in the curriculum and andragogy in higher education. 

University of the Sunshine Coast
Australia Australia

Dr Colleen Stieler-Hunt is a games researcher, educator, designer, and player. Her passion lies in the design of games to consciously make a positive difference in the world. Colleen is a lecturer at the University of the Sunshine Coast where she lectures in their game design undergraduate degree program.