Using Games to Support STEM Curiosity, Identity, and Self-Efficacy

In this study, we examine how we might design and use games to support Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) learning as well as relevant social and emotional learning skills such as self-efficacy, curiosity, and STEM identity. We investigate a deck-building card game, Assassins of the Sea (Killer Snails, 2017), which teaches about marine biology, ecology, and environmental science. 178 middle school participants played the game and took an assessment before and after the game. Our results suggest that players’ STEM knowledge increased significantly. We also share social and emotional learning results, identify gaps, and make initial recommendations for creating and using games for STEM learning.


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