Epistemological Beliefs in Games vs. School

This paper outlines a study examining whether adolescent videogame players hold different epistemological beliefs in the game space compared to their school realm. We presented a group of adolescent World of Warcraft players, a massively multiplayer online (MMO) game in which the participants play together to accomplish shared goals, with two isometric epistemological surveys (one regarding the game and the other regarding school) to determine whether there is a difference in their beliefs about the nature of knowledge and learning in game play compared to school. In triangulating the quantitative survey results with qualitative gameplay chat data, our results indicate that adolescent players are significantly more likely to believe that hard work is rewarded with learning and success in the context of the game, whereas in a school-based context players tended to believe the opposite: that one can’t learn how to learn, and success is unrelated to hard work.

A Mixed-Methods Approach
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