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Pwning Level Bosses in MATLAB: Student Reactions to a Game-Inspired Computational Physics Course
written by Ian D. Beatty and Lauren A. Harris
We investigated student reactions to two computational physics courses incorporating several videogame-like aspects. These included use of gaming terminology such as "levels," "weapons," and "bosses"; a game-style point system linked to course grades; a self-paced schedule with no deadlines; a mastery design in which only entirely correct attempts earn credit, but students can retry until they succeed; immediate feedback via self-test code; an assignment progression from "minions" (small, focused tasks) to "level bosses" (integrative tasks); and believable, authentic assignment scenarios. Through semi-structured interviews and course evaluations, we found that a majority of students considered the courses effective and the game-like aspects beneficial. In particular, many claimed that the point system increased their motivation; the self-paced nature caused them to reflect on their self-discipline; the possibility and necessity of repeating assignments until perfect aided learning; and the authentic tasks helped them envision using course skills in their professional futures.
Physics Education Research Conference 2014
Part of the PER Conference series
Minneapolis, MN: July 30-31, 2014
Pages 39-42
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Education - Applied Research
- Active Learning
- Curriculum Development
= Course
- Instructional Material Design
= Project
- Learning Environment
Education - Basic Research
- Student Characteristics
= Affect
- Lower Undergraduate
- Reference Material
= Research study
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Format:
application/pdf
Mirror:
http://dx.doi.org/10.1119/perc.20…
Access Rights:
Free access
License:
This material is released under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license. Further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the published article's author(s), title, proceedings citation, and DOI.
Rights Holder:
American Association of Physics Teachers
DOI:
10.1119/perc.2014.pr.006
PACSs:
01.40.Di
01.40.Fk
01.40.gb
01.40.Ha
Keywords:
Games, PERC 2014, course design, engagement, mastery, motivation
Record Creator:
Metadata instance created April 24, 2015 by Lyle Barbato
Record Updated:
June 1, 2015 by Lyle Barbato
Last Update
when Cataloged:
April 28, 2015
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Record Link
AIP Format
I. Beatty and L. Harris, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2014, Minneapolis, MN, 2014, WWW Document, (https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13443&DocID=4042).
AJP/PRST-PER
I. Beatty and L. Harris, Pwning Level Bosses in MATLAB: Student Reactions to a Game-Inspired Computational Physics Course, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2014, Minneapolis, MN, 2014, <https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13443&DocID=4042>.
APA Format
Beatty, I., & Harris, L. (2014, July 30-31). Pwning Level Bosses in MATLAB: Student Reactions to a Game-Inspired Computational Physics Course. Paper presented at Physics Education Research Conference 2014, Minneapolis, MN. Retrieved December 10, 2017, from https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13443&DocID=4042
Chicago Format
Beatty, Ian, and Lauren Harris. "Pwning Level Bosses in MATLAB: Student Reactions to a Game-Inspired Computational Physics Course." Paper presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2014, Minneapolis, MN, July 30-31, 2014. https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13443&DocID=4042 (accessed 10 December 2017).
MLA Format
Beatty, Ian, and Lauren Harris. "Pwning Level Bosses in MATLAB: Student Reactions to a Game-Inspired Computational Physics Course." Physics Education Research Conference 2014. Minneapolis, MN: 2014. 39-42 of PER Conference. 10 Dec. 2017 <https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13443&DocID=4042>.
BibTeX Export Format
@inproceedings{ Author = "Ian Beatty and Lauren Harris", Title = {Pwning Level Bosses in MATLAB: Student Reactions to a Game-Inspired Computational Physics Course}, BookTitle = {Physics Education Research Conference 2014}, Pages = {39-42}, Address = {Minneapolis, MN}, Series = {PER Conference}, Month = {July 30-31}, Year = {2014} }
Refer Export Format

%A Ian Beatty
%A Lauren Harris
%T Pwning Level Bosses in MATLAB: Student Reactions to a Game-Inspired Computational Physics Course
%S PER Conference
%D July 30-31 2014
%P 39-42
%C Minneapolis, MN
%U https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13443&DocID=4042
%O Physics Education Research Conference 2014
%O July 30-31
%O application/pdf

EndNote Export Format

%0 Conference Proceedings
%A Beatty, Ian
%A Harris, Lauren
%D July 30-31 2014
%T Pwning Level Bosses in MATLAB: Student Reactions to a Game-Inspired Computational Physics Course
%B Physics Education Research Conference 2014
%C Minneapolis, MN
%P 39-42
%S PER Conference
%8 July 30-31
%U https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13443&DocID=4042


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