Abstract Details

Research And Experiences Using A Strategy Simulation Game With Third Level Business Students.

Relevance to the conference

In support of the overall theme of the IGBL conference as a forum to exchange ideas and best practice on the use of game-based approaches to support learning, this presentation will include key research and experiences from multiple cycles of action research into GBL with business students at third level. The presentation contents will include research findings as well as the researchers experience and reflections. The aim of the presentation is to offer some key findings and advice that could guide other lecturers considering implementing simulation software in their classroom.

Relevant issue or challenge addressed

One method of introducing real world scenarios into the class room is via software simulations. This presentation outlines some key points that would aid lecturers considering implementing simulation software. Experiences and learning presented will span the process from software selection to implementation.


Settings where GBL was used

A strategy simulation software was used at final year undergraduate level in the school of business at Cork Institute of Technology. The simulation software selected for this research was Pearson’s “MyStrategyExperience” and it has now been in use for three years.

Key Information from Presentation

Research has been conducted into the students’ view of simulation software as well as several cycles of action research using a strategy simulation software with business undergraduates. The results presented to participants will include the key learning or key challenges overcome across this research period. The aim of the presentation would be to deliver useful information for any lecturer considering implementing a software simulation in their classroom.

Information will be categorised into four areas:

  1. The student perspective on simulation software
    Students were found to approve of simulations while still listing reservations regarding their use as assessment, knowing these reservations can lead to a more successful outcome.
  2. Narrowing the field of prospective simulation games
    Identification of the appropriate simulation software can be challenging as the market presents an array of choices. Some key selection considerations will be identified to assist in this process.
  3. Software Simulations Implementation Issues
    After a number of years using simulation software the researcher has identified some implementation issues that should be considered to ease adoption of an often unfamiliar environment for students.
  4. Selection of supporting references and research.

Some information presented is the output of structured research into the use of simulation software at third level, but further information or learning will include the researcher experiences and reflection on this process. The aim of the presentation would be to give participants some key research outputs including a suggested reading list as well as pointers or lessons learnt following a number of years using a strategy simulation software at third level.

Selection of Supporting References

  • Anderson, P. H. and Lawton, L. (2009) ‘Business Simulations and Cognitive Learning’, Simulation & Gaming, 40(2), pp. 193-216. doi: 10.1177/1046878108321624.
  • Arias-Aranda, D. (2007) ‘Simulating reality for teaching strategic management’, Innovations in Education and Teaching International, 44(3), pp. 273-286. doi: 10.1080/14703290701486662.
  • Bloxham, S. and Boyd, P. (2007) Developing Effective Assessment in Higher Education: A Practical Guide. Milton Keynes: Open University Press.
  • Brown, S. (2004) ‘Assessment for learning’, Learning and teaching in higher education, (1), pp. 81-89. doi: 10.1187/cbe.11-03-0025.
  • Crowley, A., Farren, M. and OSúilleabháin, G. (2017) ‘Strategy Simulation Games: The Student Perspective and an Investigation of Employability Competencies Gained Through the Use of Strategy Simulations in Higher Education’, in Vincenti, G. et al. (eds) eLEOT2016. Springer International Publishing. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-49625-2_25.
  • Entwistle, N. and Tait, H. (1990) ‘Approaches to Learning , Evaluations of Teaching , and Preferences for Contrasting Academic Environments Author ( s ): Noel Entwistle and Hilary Tait Published by?: Springer Stable URL?: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3447162 Accessed?: 15-04-2016 16?: 42 UT’, Higher Education, 19(2), pp. 169-194.
  • De Freitas, S. and Liarokapis, F. (2011) ‘Serious Games: A New Paradigm for Education?’, Serious Games and Edutainment Applications, pp. 9-23. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4471-2161-9.
  • Gredler, M. E. (2004) ‘Games and simulations and their relationships to learning.’, Handbook of research on educational communications and technology, 2, pp. 571-581. Available at: http://www.coulthard.com/library/Files/gredler_2004_gamesandsimsandrelationtolearning.pdf (Accessed: 8 June 2017).
  • Keys, B. and Wolfe, J. (1990) ‘The role of managment games and simulation in education research.pdf’, Journal of Management, pp. 307-336. doi: 10.1177/014920639001600205.
  • Knotts Jr., U. S. and Keys, J. B. (1997) ‘Teaching Strategic Management with a Business Game’, Simulation & Gaming, 28(4), pp. 377-394.
  • Summers, G. J. (2004) ‘Today’s Business Simulation Industry’, Simulation & Gaming , 35(2), pp. 208-241. doi: 10.1177/1046878104263546.
  • Wolfe, J. (1985) ‘The Teaching Effectiveness of Games in Collegiate Business Courses – A 1973-1983 Update’, Simulation and Games, 16(3), pp. 251-288

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