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Serious Games for Global Education

Digital Game-Based Learning in the English as a Foreign Language (EFL) Classroom

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Claudia Müller

In the last few years, global education has become a key concept within the TEFL domain, suggesting competences, topics, and methods that enable students to become responsible and knowledgeable participants in a globalized world. With the help of a triangulated blended learning study conducted in five different middle school EFL classes, and an additional small group study, the author investigates the potential of digital games that have an educational purpose, so called serious games, for global education when used in EFL scenarios. The results show a clear contribution of serious games to global education when used with EFL learners, leading to a reference model of digital game-based learning in the EFL classroom.

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6. Empirical Study Part I: Blended Learning Study

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Abstract: Before depicting the serious games used for the different parts of this research study, and summarizing the objectives of the blended learning unit, this chapter presents the development of the research design, the concept of the empirical study and the instruments used.

6.1. Research Design

In order to draw conclusions about the potential of serious games for global education when used in EFL classrooms, quantitative and qualitative data was collected and assessed. The data was obtained in two parts: a blended learning classroom study conducted in five different EFL classes, and a small group study, conducted at the computer lab at the Technische Universität Braunschweig. In order to assure reliable results for the test of a serious game, one serious game was chosen and embedded in a blended learning unit. The development of the blended learning unit was effected by the researcher and will be discussed in chapter 6.3., the small group study will be presented in chapter 9., the evaluation of its results ensues in chapter 9.4. The following section focuses on the design decisions relevant to the blended learning study, its methodology and its instruments.

6.1.1. Preliminary Decisions

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