Development and Validation of a Questionnaire to Measure Perceptions of Freedom of Choice in Digital Games

  • Sotiris Kirginas University of Athens
  • Dimitris Gouscos University of Athens
Keywords: Digital Games, Freedom of Choice, Player Perceptions, Free-form Gameplay, Structured Gameplay, Questionnaire, Measurement, Validation, Adventure Games, Games for Learning

Abstract

The purposes of this study were (a) to develop a valid and reliable questionnaire using both the structural characteristics of digital games and students perceptions of the concept of freedom of choice in digital games, (b) to validate items to be used in questionnaire to measure perceived freedom of choice, (c) to identify the factors that underlie freedom of choice in digital games and (d) to generate a model to predict preferred freedom of choice in digital games from gender, age, familiarity with digital game and frequency of digital game use. The study consisted of four phases. First, 9 items were developed though a comprehensive literature review and a focus groups method. Second, the items were refined through three layers of review. Third, 290 primary school students rated the results of the reviews. Fourth, exploratory factor analysis (EFA) were employed to analyze the data. The results of the Freedom of Choice (FoC) Questionnaire were statistically significant with a total of 9 items across two factors (exploratory freedom - outcome freedom). Furthermore, a model was constructed, based on a multiple regression, in order to predict preferred freedom of choice in digital games from different demographic characteristics of players. This work can be implemented in serious games; if serious games include the characteristics of free-form play can lead to more engaging and more free-form learning processes, which can better support innovative approaches to learning and, more generally, to the acquisition of 21st century transferable skills.This effort is contextualized within a broader research plan for using digital games (adventure games, in particular) as learning frameworks, with a view to ultimately taking stock of positive player experience drivers, such as freedom of choice, as enablers for better player/learner engagement and more effective learning. 

Author Biographies

Sotiris Kirginas, University of Athens
Sotiris Kirginas is a primary school teacher and doctoral researcher at the Laboratory of New Technologies in Communication, Education and the Mass Media of the Faculty of Communication & Media Studies, National University of Athens. He holds a Bachelor Degree in primary education and a Master Degree in ICT in Education from the National University of Athens. His research focuses on exploring the significance of digital games-based learning in education and how does it relate to enhancing the learning process.
Dimitris Gouscos, University of Athens
Dr. Dimitris Gouscos is Assistant Professor with the Faculty of Communication and Media Studies of the University of Athens, and a Research Fellow of the Laboratory of New Technologies in Communication, Education and the Mass Media. He is Editor-in-Chief of the Intl Journal of Electronic Governance and his research interests evolve around applications of social media, digital games and other interactive digital media to e-learning, e-participation and e-governance. More information available at http://www.media.uoa.gr/~gouscos.

References

[1] Wiebe, E., Lamb, A., Hardy, M., Sharek, D., Measuring Engagement in Video Game-based Environments: Investigation of the User Engagement Scale, Computers in Human Behavior, (32), 123-132, 2014.
[2] Sweetser, P., Wyeth, P., GameFlow: A model for evaluating player enjoyment in games, Computers in Entertainment, 3(3), 1-24, 2005. http://dx.doi.org/10.1145/1077246.1077253
[3] Csíkszentmihályi, M., Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience. New York, NY: Harper & Row Publishers, Inc, 1990.
[4] Bracken, C.C., Lange, R.L., & Denny, J., “Online video games and gamers’ sensations of spatial, social, and co-presence”, In Proceedings of the 2005 FuturePlay Conference. East Lansing, MI, 2005.
[5] Takatalo, J., Hakkinen, J., Komulainen, J., Sarkela, H., Nyman, G., “Involvement and presence in digital gaming”, In Proceedings of the 4th Nordic conference on Human-computer interaction: changing roles, Oslo, Norway, ACM Press, 2006. http://dx.doi.org/10.1145/1182475.1182520
[6] McMahan. A., “Immersion, Engagement, and Presence: A Method for Analyzing 3-D Video Games”, In M. J. P. Wolf & B. Perron (Eds.), The video game theory reader (pp. 67-86). New York: Routledge, 2003.
[7] Brown, E., Cairns, P., “A grounded investigation of immersion in games”, In ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (pp. 1297–1300), New York, NY: ACM Press, 2004. http://dx.doi.org/10.1145/985921.986048
[8] Ermi, L., Mayra, F., “Fundamental Components of the Gameplay Experience: Analysing Immersion”, In Proceedings of Chancing Views – Worlds in Play (vol. 37, pp. 37-53), New York, NY: Peter Lang International Academic Publisher, 2005.
[9] Jennett, C., Cox, A.L., Cairns, P., Dhoparee, S., Epps, A., Tijs T., Walton, A., Measuring and defining the experience of immersion in games, International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, 66, 641-661, 2008. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhcs.2008.04.004
[10] Costello, B., Edmonds, E., “A Tool for Characterizing the Experience of Play”, In Proceedings of the Sixth Australasian Conference on Interactive Entertainment (pp. 1-10), Sydney, Australia: ACM Press, 2009. http://dx.doi.org/10.1145/1746050.1746052
[11] Przybylski, A.K., Rigby, C.S., Ryan, R., A Motivational Model of Video Game Engagement. Review of General Psychology, 14(2), 154-166, 2010. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/a0019440
[12] Malone, T.W., Lepper, M.R., “Making Learning Fun: A Taxonomy of Intrinsic Motivations for Learning”, In R.E. Snow & M.J. Farr (Eds.), Aptitute, Learning and Instruction: III. Conative and affective process analyses (pp. 223-253) Hilsdale, NJ: Erlbaum, 1987.
[13] Rigby, S., Ryan, R., Glued to Games: How Video Games Draw us In and Hold us Spellbound, Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger, 2011.
[14] Klimmt, C., “Dimensions and determinants of the enjoyment of playing digital games: A three-level model”, In Proceedings of the Digital Games Research Conference (pp. 246-257), Utrecht, The Netherlands: Faculty of Arts, Utrecht University, 2003.
[15] IJsselsteijn, W. A., Poels, K., de Kort, Y.A.W., The game experience questionnaire: Development of a self-report measure to assess player experiences of digital games. Eindhoven, The Netherlands: TU Eindhoven. FUGA deliverable D3.3. Technical report, 2008.
[16] Koster, R., A Theory of Fun for Game Design, Scottsdale, AZ: Paraglyph Press, 2004.
[17] Poels, K., de Kort, Y.A.W., IJsselsteijn, W.A., “It is always a lot of fun! Exploring Dimensions of Digital Game Experience using Focus Group Methodology”, In Proceedings of Futureplay 2007(pp. 83-89), Toronto, Canada: ACM Press, 2007.
[18] Hassenzahl, M., Tractinsky, N., User Experience – a Research Agenda, Behaviour and Information Technology, 25(2), 2006. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01449290500330331
[19] Roto, V., “User Experience from Product Creation Perspective”. In E. Law, A. Vermeeren, M. Hassenzahl, M. Blythe (Eds.), Towards a UX Manifesto workshop. Lancaster, UK: COST, 2007.
[20] Egenfeldt-Nielsen, S., Smith, J., Tosca, S., Understanding Video Games: The Essential Introduction, London: Routledge, 2008.
[21] Almeida, S., Veloso, A., Roque, L., Mealha, O., Moura A., “The Video Game and Player in a Gameplay Experience Model Proposal”. In Proceedings of Videojogos 2013 - 6th Annual Conference in the Science and Art of Video Games. Coimbra, Portugal: University of Coimbra, Portugal, 2013.
[22] Salen, K., Zimmerman, E., Rules of play: Game design fundamentals, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2004.
[23] Rollings, A., Adams, E., Andrew Rollings and Ernest Adams on Game Design. Indianapolis, IN: New Riders, 2003.
[24] Wolf, M., Assessing Interactivity in Video Game Design. Mechademia 1: Emerging Worlds of Anime and Manga, of the series Mechademia: An Annual Forum fir Anime, Manga and the Fan Arts, pp. 78-86, 2006. http://dx.doi.org/10.1353/mec.0.0095
[25] Rommeswinkel, H., Measuring freedom in games, University of St.Gallen Law & Economics Working Paper, 2014.
[26] Björk, S., Holopainen, J., Patterns in Game Design. Charles River Media, 2004.
[27] Rollings, A., Morris, D., Game Architecture and Design. Scottsdale, AZ: Coriolis Group, 2000.
[28] Caillois, R., Man, Play, Games. Chicago, IL: University of Illinois Press, 2001.
[29] Frasca, G., Simulation Versus Narrative: Introduction to Ludology, 2003, [Online]. Available: http://www.ludology.org/articles/VGT_final.pdf.
[30] McGregor, G., “Terra ludus, terra paidia, terra prefab: spatialization of play in videogames & virtual worlds”, In Proceedings of the 5th Australasian Conference on Interactive Entertainment (pp. 31-38), New York, NY: ACM Press, 2008. http://dx.doi.org/10.1145/1514402.1514407
[31] Juul, J., Half-Real: Video Games between Real Rules and Fictional Worlds. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2005.
[32] Mitgutsch, K., Digital Play-Based Learning. A philosophical-pedagogical perspective on learning and playing in computer games, Journal for Information Technology Studies as Human Science 9(3), 2008.
[33] Abt C., Serious Games, New York, Viking Press, 1970.
[34] Bellotti, F., Berta, R., De Gloria, A., Designing effective serious games: opportunities and challenges for research, International Journal of Emerging Technologies in Learning, vol. 5, pp. 22–35, 2010. http://dx.doi.org/10.3991/ijet.v5s3.1500
[35] Bellotti, F., Berta, R., De Gloria, A., Ott, M., Arnab, S., De Freitas, S., Kiili, K., “Designing Serious Games for education: from Pedagogical principles to Game Mechanisms”, In Gouscos D. and Meimaris M. (Eds.), Proceedings of 5th European Conference on Game-Based Learning, Oct 2011, Athens, Greece. Academic Publ. Ltd, Reading, UK, pp.26-34, 2011.
[36] Sliney, A., Murphy, D., “JDoc: A serious game for medical learning”, in ACHI '08 Proceedings of the First International Conference on Advances in Computer-Human Interaction, pp. 131-136, IEEE, 2008. http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/ACHI.2008.50
[37] Slater, M., Khanna, P., Mortensen, J., Yu, I., Visual realism enhances realistic response in an immersive virtual environment, Computer Graphics and Applications, IEEE, 29(3), 76-84, 2009. http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/MCG.2009.55
[38] Qin, J., Chui, Y. P., Pang, W. M., Choi, K. S., Heng, P. A., Learning blood management in orthopedic surgery through gameplay, Computer Graphics and Applications, IEEE, 30(2), 45-57, 2010. http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/MCG.2009.83
[39] Kirschner, P.A., Sweller, J., Clark, R.E., Why minimal guidance during instruction does not work: An analysis of the failure of constructivist, discovery, problem-based, experiential, and inquiry based teaching, Educational Psychologist, 41, 75-86, 2006. http://dx.doi.org/10.1207/s15326985ep4102_1
[40] Prensky, M., Digital game-based learning, St. Paul, MN: Paragon House, 2007.
[41] Rouse, R., Game Design Theory and Practice, (2nd Ed.) Plano, TX: Wordware Publishing, Inc, 2015.
[42] Dewar, G., Teaching critical thinking: A Parenting Science guide, 2009. [Online]. Available: http://www.parentingscience.com/teaching-critical-thinking.html
[43] Byrne, M.B., Structural equation modeling with AMOS: Basic concepts, applications, and programming (Multivariate applications series, 2nd ed.), New York, NY: Taylor & Francis, 2010.
[44] Jung, I., The dimensions of e-Learning quality: From the learner’s perspective, Educational Technology Research & Development, 59, 2010.
[45] Haladyna, T. M., Developing and validating multiple-choice test items, Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc, 1999.
[46] De Von, H.A., Block, M. E., Moyle-Wright, P., Ernst, D. M., Hayden, S. J., Lazzara, D. J., A psychometric Toolbox for testing Validity and Reliability, Journal of Nursing scholarship, 39 (2), 2007. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1547-5069.2007.00161.x
[47] Kane, M., Current concerns in validity theory, Journal of Educational Measurement, 38, 2001. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1745-3984.2001.tb01130.x
[48] Green, S. B., Salkind, N. J., Using SPSS for Windows and Macintosh (3rd ed.), Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2003.
Published
2016-06-28
How to Cite
Kirginas, S., & Gouscos, D. (2016). Development and Validation of a Questionnaire to Measure Perceptions of Freedom of Choice in Digital Games. International Journal of Serious Games, 3(2). https://doi.org/10.17083/ijsg.v3i2.120
Section
Articles

Most read articles by the same author(s)

Obs.: This plugin requires at least one statistics/report plugin to be enabled. If your statistics plugins provide more than one metric then please also select a main metric on the admin's site settings page and/or on the journal manager's settings pages.