Can digital game based learning develop critical thinking skills in secondary school learners using standards based grading?
Games have commonly been used as a motivational tool and as an incentive for learning by educators; however, with the explosion of online games and the advances in mobile technology, online games can now be played anywhere and at any time given access to wireless connectivity. The use of online educational games for K-12 learners such as Kahoot or Minecraft is also expanding as is the use of game elements such as badges and leaderboards. Purposes for using online games may range from review of course content and knowledge to building virtual worlds using Minecraft software in order to demonstrate scientific concepts learned in class. This project seeks to discover and offer a response to the critical challenge question, “How can educators support secondary school learners’ critical thinking skills using standards based grading in a gamified learning setting?” Questions to consider include, how can the use of gamified learning be used with assessment practices that are standards based opposed to points based to support higher level or critical thinking skills? A final question seeks to discover if can games or gamified learning in the secondary classroom assess students’ ability to reach these higher levels of thinking? In tandem with this literature study is a major project which will build a gamified learning addressing the use of games to support student success using the tenets of Standards Based Grading (SBG). An accessible website with: gamification resources, SBG resources and the sample lessons of a mini unit will serve as the platform of delivery of this Major Project, as well as a place to support teachers.