The Game Enhanced Learning Model: Mapping Gamebased Learning for Educators

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In this paper, we will introduce the Game Enhanced learning Model (GEM), which describes a range of gameoriented learning activities. The model is intended to give an overview of the possibilities of game-based learning in general and all the way up to purposive game productions. In the paper, we will describe the levels of the model, which is based on our experience in teaching professional game development at university level. Furthermore, we have been using the model to inspire numerous educators to improve their students’ motivation and skills. The model presents various
game-based learning activities, and depicts their required planning and expected outcome through eight levels. At its lower levels, the model contains the possibilities of using stand-alone analogue and digital games as teachers, utilizing games as a
facilitator of learning activities, exploiting gamification and motivating students through role-play. The higher levels include modifying existing games, fundamental game development, creating games while enhance learning in a desired topic, and
finally the development of purposive games. It is our experience that the four lower levels, which are concerned with using games in the classroom, gamification and roleplay, can be applied by almost any teacher in any topic - if assistance is available at the first sessions. It is however in the four higher levels, which are concerned with game development, that we experience the greatest impacts. Most so with digital game development since these levels also simultaneously improve students’ technical skills and motivation to learn programming. In order to illustrate the use of the model, we will describe an initiative to change the renowned Aalborg University Problem Based Learning model into a more production-oriented approach. The initiative was named “The Purposive Game Production” and focused on accommodating a range of wishes from students while making the education more tailored towards finding the students’ passion and securing a job after graduation.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of The 10th European Conference on Games Based Learning
EditorsThomas Connolly, Liz Boyle
PublisherAcademic Conferences and Publishing International
Publication date5 Oct 2016
ISBN (Print)978-1-5108-3029-5
Publication statusPublished - 5 Oct 2016
Event10th European Conference on Games Based Learning - Paisley, United Kingdom
Duration: 6 Oct 20167 Oct 2016
Conference number: 10


Conference10th European Conference on Games Based Learning
CountryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


  • Game enhanced learning model
  • game-based learning
  • problem based learning
  • teaching
  • intrinsic motivation
  • game development


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