A Guideline towards Designing Serious Games in Manufacturing Education

This is the title of my PhD dissertation, defended in department of Management, Economics, and Industrial engineering at Politecnico di Milano. In below, the contributions of this research to both knowledge and practice are introduced.

This thesis has contributed a systematic literature review to map the status of the existing serious games in manufacturing education. To carry out this study hundreds of articles which referred to and discussed about serious games in the areas related to manufacturing education were reviewed. They were classified according to the contexts they had been applied -classroom and/or vocational training, and their form – digital or not-digital – multiplayer or single player – with or without a facilitator. According to their effectiveness, they were categorized for their impacts on improving Cognitive knowledge and skill, and Affective learning outcomes.

On the other hand, this thesis has contributed to experimental studies conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of four serious games (Shortfall, LCA game, Logistics game, and SBCE game) in the areas related to the manufacturing education. For this goal, according to the revised version of Bloom taxonomy, the impacts of the games on supporting the achievement of different types of cognitive and affective learning outcomes were assessed.

In addition, this thesis has contributed empirical studies about those game mechanics which guide the identified serious game to become effective learning methods in the areas relate to the manufacturing education. In general level, carrying out a critical literature review introduced 25 game mechanics, but empirical studies resulted 13 items which had considerable impact on the effectiveness of the evaluated serious games.

 

In a practical approach, beyond the extracted game mechanics, this thesis has developed a practical tool which supports manufacturing education systems to design effective serious games in the areas associated to the manufacturing education. That is a guideline which guides manufacturing education centres to come up with constructive ideas and practical solutions when being involved in serious game design, through keeping in mind systematically those recommendations presented and explained in the guideline.

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