A principled approach to utilizing digital games in the language learning classroom
Empirical research into the use of digital games for educational purposes has shown promising results such as increased learner motivation, improved learner retention of information, and increased learner interest in subject matter. Furthermore, in the field of language learning, digital games have been used successfully in a variety of ways such as improving learners’ vocabulary acquisition, raising learners’ awareness of audience in writing, and increasing learners’ willingness to communicate. However, not all of the research into the use of digital games for language learning is positive; in some instances, the use of games can actually interfere with language acquisition. This paper will first briefly examine the potential benefits and risks of using digital games in the language classroom. Next, three principles for deploying digital games effectively in the classroom will be presented and discussed. These principles, synthesized from published empirical research into the use of games for educational purposes, are guidelines educators can follow to help ensure that learning objectives are met when utilizing digital games. Use of these principles will be illustrated with examples from published research articles.
Baierschmidt, J. (2013). A principled approach to utilizing digital games in the language learning classroom. The JALT CALL Journal, 9(3), 307-315.