USING EDUCATIONAL GAMES TO TEACH PERSONAL ACCOUNTABILITY IN A CORPORATE CONTEXT
Purpose: The purpose of this project is to design and evaluate two educational games on personal accountability - one digital and one non-digital. The games are to be used as part of a personal accountability training in an international manufacturing company. The aim is to compare the digital and the non-digital game as well as to evaluate the effectiveness of educational games for teaching organizational culture related concepts such as personal accountability in a corporate context. Theory: The digital game was designed with a behaviourism learning theory in mind, whereas the non-digital was built based on cognitivist and socio-cultural principles. Method: This project is conducted as a design experiment consisting of two phases – testing and implementation. Iterative design principles were used to design the games. The data collection was conducted in the form of observation, survey and interviews. The interview results were subjected to thematic analysis. Results: Both the digital game and the card game were well received by the personal accountability training participants. Stronger preference for the card game was expressed based on the higher levels of self-reported engagement and learning. We found that the participants didn’t have a clear preference for either digital or non-digital games. It became evident that both formats have their merit depending on the context and the educational goals. When it comes to the effectiveness of the games the digital game worked well as an interactive introductory exercise, but it failed to meet the high expectations related with games to the fullest. The card game on the other hand was described as very effective in facilitating engagement and learning. The findings show strong evidence for the beneficial effect of the mechanics based on cognitive and socio-cultural principles in the context of the evaluated training. Overcoming realistic, relevant scenarios as part of a game was described by the participants as an engaging and enriching experience. Compared to lectures and speeches, games were preferred by the participants when it comes to teaching organizational values. There was some evidence for resistance towards lectures and speeches, where such resistance was not observed when discussing the effectiveness of games for teaching organizational values. From our findings, it appears that games could be used as an alternative presentational ritual to speeches and lectures that causes less resistance.