The use of game-based learning strategies in higher education has shown promise to increase student motivation and achievement. Little is known about which game mechanics are most appropriate and effective for learners at different academic levels. This article examines teacher selection and implementation of game mechanics in 27 courses from middle school to higher education designed with game-based learning.27 educators participated in an open-ended survey on the design of their course. Measures included an open response survey on patterns and design of game mechanics with results validated through member checking. Findings included different choices of game attributes and game elements in courses in middle school, high school, and higher education. Teacher selection and inclusion of game mechanics changed over time to better meet the needs of students. The structure of game-based learning at different levels will vary to meet the developmental and academic needs of students, but more work is needed in determining which strategies are most effective for learning.
Nadolny, L., Alaswad, Z., Culver, D., & Wang, W. (2017). Designing With Game-Based Learning: Game Mechanics From Middle School to Higher Education. Simulation & Gaming, 1046878117736893.