Serious Games in University Education of Future Teachers

by Mariana Sirotová (Author) Veronika Michvocíková (Author) Marián Hosťovecký (Author)
©2021 Monographs 220 Pages


This scientific monograph, while dealing with the issue of supervised teaching practice, points out the importance of implementing serious games into pre-graduate preparation of teachers. Current trends in education point towards the ever-increasing integration of information and communication technology into educational processes. The digitalisation of education brings us to the question if it is possible to meaningfully employ information and communication technology in bridging the theoretical and practical preparation for the teaching profession and to improve the standard of supervised teaching practice realisation for students – the future teachers.

Table Of Contents

  • Cover
  • Title
  • Copyright
  • About the author
  • About the book
  • This eBook can be cited
  • Content
  • Introduction
  • 1 Pre-graduate Preparation
  • 1.1 The Teaching Profession in Contemporary Society
  • 1.2 View of the Teaching Profession from an International Perspective
  • 1.3 Teachers’ Qualification Pre-requisites in Countries of the European Union
  • 1.4 Pre-graduate Education of Teachers in the Slovak Republic
  • 1.5 Studies with a Pedagogical Focus at Slovak Universities
  • 2 Supervised Teaching Practice for University Students in Pre-graduate Preparation of Teachers – Theory and Reality
  • 2.1 Supervised Teaching Practice – Theoretical Outline
  • 2.2 The Goal, Functions and Tasks of Supervised Teaching Practice
  • 2.3 The Subjects and the Environment of Supervised Teaching Practice
  • 2.4 The Realisation of Supervised Teaching Practice and Its Types
  • 2.5 Factors Influencing the Realisation of Supervised Teaching Practice
  • 2.6 Supervised Teaching Practice Student Portfolio
  • 3 Personality of a University Student in Supervised Teaching Practice
  • 3.1 Personality of a University Student versus His or Her Physical, Psychological and Sociological Maturity
  • 3.2 Taxonomies of University Students in Contemporary Theory
  • 3.3 Personality of a University Student in Contemporary Legislation
  • 4 Experimental Verification of a Serious Game
  • 4.1 Theoretical Outline of the Experimental Method and Additional Methods for Collecting Information
  • 4.2 A Serious Game from the Perspective of the Factor Rotation Technique in a Quasi-Experiment
  • 4.2.1 Causality and Hypotheses of the Quasi-Experiment
  • 4.2.2 Methods and Subjects in the Process of Realizing the Quasi-Experiment
  • 4.2.3 The Analysis and Interpretations of the Quasi-Experiment’s Findings
  • 4.2.4 The Quasi-Experiment’s Results
  • 5 Analysis of Supervised Teaching Practice Using SWOT
  • 5.1 Theoretical Pre-requisites of the SWOT Analysis
  • 5.2 Interpretation of Collected Answers through the SWOT Analysis No. 1
  • 5.2.1 Strengths
  • 5.2.2 Opportunities
  • 5.2.3 Weaknesses
  • 5.2.4 Threats
  • 5.3 Interpretation of Collected Answers Using the SWOT Analysis No. 2
  • 5.3.1 Strengths
  • 5.3.2 Opportunities
  • 5.3.3 Weaknesses
  • 5.3.4 Threats
  • 5.4 Discussion
  • 5.5 The SWOT Analyses Results
  • 6 Serious Game – Paidagogos
  • 6.1 Game, e-Learning and Gamification
  • 6.2 What Are Serious Games?
  • 6.3 Digital Literacy and Digital Competence
  • 6.4 Benefits and Challenges of Digital Games
  • 6.5 Paidagogos – design and development of a serious game
  • Conclusion
  • List of Figures
  • List of Graphs
  • List of Tables
  • Bibliography

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Supervised teaching practice has an important role in pre-graduate preparation of teachers. It is an imaginary bridge between theoretical and practical preparation. Like doctors, teachers too must complete their practical preparation in a real environment and with real subjects. We see that the training of model situations realised during theoretical preparation at a university is not sufficient for the development of students’ professional competencies. Professional competencies start to form in the process of pre-graduate preparation and they are further developed in a real educational environment when teachers perform their job. Hypothetically, there is a covariance between the length of supervised teaching practice attended by a future teacher and the level of his or her professional competencies. The degree of a mutual relationship between these two segments depends on several factors. Pre-graduate preparation of a teacher and the teaching practice completed during this preparation are important factors influencing the teacher’s future profession and the development of his or her professional competencies. It is, therefore, necessary to pay attention to supervised teaching practice not only from the aspect of its practical realisation but also from the research point of view. Research related to this issue should, in our opinion, be connected with the study of gradual integration of the virtual dimension and its innovative possibilities within teachers’ practical training. We see computer games, which are very popular among young people today, as part of the virtual dimension. An educational computer game (referred to as a serious game) can be a tool that supports the transformation of practical experience and theoretical knowledge in the development of future teachers’ professional competencies. Presently, however, there is no such game. We are of the opinion that simulation computer games should be incorporated into educational processes. They are beneficial not only for the advancement of knowledge but also for students’ psychomotor development. They bring students a new way of advancing their creativity and bridging the theoretical pre-requisites of the study program with the teaching practice. This was the reason why a team of experts from the Department of Pedagogy at the Philosophical Faculty of the University of Cyril and Methodius in Trnava in cooperation with Faculty of Natural Sciences University of SS. Cyriland Methodius in Trnava commenced a project named KEGA 015UCM -4/2018 Supervised Teaching Practice for University Students with the Support of the Virtual Dimension. This scientific monograph is one of the outputs from the project, and in its individual chapters, the project leaders present the theoretical ←9 | 10→background and results of their research conducted via an experiment with the use of the factor rotation technique and the SWOT analysis.

The monograph consists of six chapters that introduce pre-graduate preparation of teachers in the process of university education, supervised teaching practice realization, the personality of a university student – trainee and factors determining the development of his or her personality during supervised teaching practice, results of the analysis of supervised teaching practice through SWOT and the serious game itself, including its experimental verification.

The first chapter examines the issue of pre-graduate preparation of teachers as part of university education in Slovakia and introduces the perception of the teaching profession by contemporary society. The second chapter introduces a theoretical outline of the term supervised teaching practice using the comparison of various definitions and identification of their common features. Based on the resulting definition, it subsequently specifies the goal, functions and roles of supervised teaching practice, which are necessary for its high-standard realisation, resulting in the development of a trainee’s personality. The trainee along with university teachers, who facilitate the theoretical preparation and acquisition of knowledge from pedagogical and psychological disciplines as well as from subjects the trainee is going to teach in the future, and with practice teachers represent the basic subjects of supervised teaching practice. The chapter deals with individual activities of practice teachers who perform three basic roles in the practical training of future teachers: the role of a model, advisor and evaluator. It characterizes “a good practice teacher” as an ideal personality, facilitating a high-standard realisation of supervised teaching practice and the development of a trainee’s personality. During supervised teaching practice, the trainee’s personality develops, it is thus natural to look for a certain logical sequence and continuity. The chapter characterizes two basic phases of supervised teaching practice. In the first phase, the trainee becomes acquainted with the environment of the practice school, observes the conditions and the processes that take place at the school and subsequently analyses and evaluates these processes with the practice teacher. In the second phase, through consultations with the practice teacher, the trainee prepares for his or her teaching performance during a particular lesson, performs the teaching and, finally, analyses and evaluates the performance with the practice teacher, while also applying self-evaluation and self-reflection relating to not only his or her educational work during the lesson but also in connection with the theoretical knowledge acquired during his or her study. These phases are not realised separately and, therefore, it is possible to identify several types of teaching practices. The chapter introduces factors influencing the realisation of supervised teaching practice divided into vertical ←10 | 11→and horizontal, starting from the most general represented by society and its perception and appreciation of the teacher’s work and finishing with the specific ones, that is practice teachers and trainees themselves. The final part of the chapter is devoted to supervised teaching practice portfolio. It defines basic terms connected to a professional portfolio, student’s portfolio used in pre-graduate preparation of teachers but also a portfolio prepared by teacher-trainees. Particular types of portfolios are characterized along with their functions and components. These components are represented by a student’s works and activities related to the processing of his or her supervised teaching practice portfolio. The portfolio’s importance transcends trainees’ individual needs because, in the long run, it helps to select new strategies and methods in university education and improve the quality of supervised teaching practice as well as pre-graduate preparation of teachers as a whole.

The third chapter deals with the issue of a university student’s personality. It characterises personality from several points of view while focusing on the characterisation of maturity, especially from psychological and sociological aspects. The process of personality formation is a difficult and specific one as it occurs through psychological development and its result depends on mutual interaction of a person’s maturing and learning. Supervised teaching practice enables a university student to apply theoretical knowledge in the process of active and experience-based learning, to develop professional competencies but also to mature through self-evaluation and self-reflection. The chapter also introduces various taxonomies and typologies of students and a comparison of traditional and non-traditional students including their perception of supervised teaching practice completion. It focuses on the area of motivation as the determining factor of a student’s personality formation but also of the formation of a trainee’s personality related to his or her participation in supervised teaching practice.

The fourth chapter deals with the experimental verification of a serious game. The experimental method is an optimal technique for verification, however, in our case, its realization is more difficult because the pedagogical reality is a much more demanding environment than a laboratory environment, for example in natural sciences. Each pedagogical situation is unique, independent variables do not work in isolation but in mutual interactions with other factors of the educational process and a random selection of experiment’s subjects is not possible in the area of university education. For the verification of the theoretical pre-requisites we have, therefore, used a quasi-experiment with the factor rotation technique. The final part of the chapter includes the results of our quasi-experiment related to using a serious game in the preparation phase of supervised teaching practice as well as during its completion.

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University students’ views of supervised teaching practice are very important in more than one aspect. As a result, the fifth chapter introduces the results of the SWOT analysis related to student-trainees’ opinions of their teaching practice. The analysis helps to improve not only the teaching practice itself but future teachers’ pre-graduate preparation as a whole.

The last, sixth, chapter introduces the design and development of a serious game, which was created and used within the project KEGA 015UCM-4/2018 Supervised Teaching Practice for University Students with the Support of the Virtual Dimension. The chapter characterizes serious games, their classification, history, benefits and challenges and briefly talks about e-Learning. The final part of the chapter presents our serious game called Paidagogos.

Author’s share of Mariana Sirotová is 5 author’s papers = 180 524 characters incl. spaces in the present monograph. Author’s share of Veronika Michvocíková is 4,5 author’s papers = 174 121 characters incl. spaces and author’s share of Marián Hosťovecký is 3,5 author’s papers = 124 513 characters incl. spaces in this book.

We would also like to express our gratitude to reviewers, Professor Erich Petlák, Professor Krzysztof Mariusz Rubacha and Professor Ján Danek for their valuable comments and suggestions that helped to finalise the scientific monograph.


ISBN (Hardcover)
Publication date
2021 (April)
Berlin, Bern, Bruxelles, New York, Oxford, Warszawa, Wien, 2021. 220 pp., 9 fig. b/w, 17 tables.

Biographical notes

Mariana Sirotová (Author) Veronika Michvocíková (Author) Marián Hosťovecký (Author)

Mariana Sirotová, Doc. Mgr. Ph.D. is the Head of Department of Pedagogy, Faculty of Arts, University of Ss. Cyril and Methodius in Trnava. Veronika Michvocíková, Mgr. Ph.D. is working at the Department of Pedagogy at the University of Ss. Cyril and Methodius in Trnava. Marián Host’ovecký, Mgr. Ph.D. is working at the Department of Applied Informatics at the University of Ss. Cyril and Methodius in Trnava.


Title: Serious Games in University Education of Future Teachers