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ERIC Number: ED571672
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 124
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3397-3178-0
The Impact of Collaborative Scaffolding in Educational Video Games on the Collaborative Support Skills of Middle School Students
Loparev, Anna
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Rochester
Collaboration is crucial to everything from product development in the workplace to research design in academia, yet there is no consensus on best practice when it comes to teaching collaborative skills. We explore one promising option: collaborative scaffolding in educational video games. Through this methodology, we can impart collaborative skills alongside topics like math and science in a medium already proven to be beneficial. Before approaching our study design, we had to reconcile the large and often contradictory volume of literature on collaboration's definition and elements. From our review of over 25 studies and surveys, we developed a multilevel taxonomy with four main components: group quality, coordination, communication, and support. Researchers can utilize the taxonomy to isolate elements of collaboration relevant to their interests, and educators can use it to help identify collaborative skills that students lack. It can even act as a design guide for educational game developers. For our own work, we chose to focus on scaffolding two subcomponents of support: direct and indirect helping. We ran mixed-factorial trials with over 70 local middle school students to observe behaviors and attitudes before, during, and after collaborative video game play. To gather data, facilitate play, and present scaffolding to students, we made several modifications to an existing educational physics game, including the creation of a scaffolding architecture and the implementation of a data collection infrastructure. Researchers and game developers can build on our designs and learn from the challenges we encountered to help develop and evaluate future scaffolding systems. During trials, we recorded audio, made direct observations, and logged in-game events. From our data, we found that collaborative scaffolding had no impact on helping behaviors, but, more interestingly, had a negative impact on motivation and attitudes toward collaboration. These results highlight the need for further exploration into behavioral effects and the external factors that can impact the value of this promising approach. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Middle Schools; Secondary Education; Junior High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A