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Evaluation of the effectiveness of integrating concept maps and computer games to teach historical understanding

, University of Northern Colorado, United States

University of Northern Colorado . Awarded


The purpose of this study was to determine if one type of scaffolding, concept mapping, would effect the participants' games performance (measured by game score), game knowledge, and historical understanding. Three different ninth grade advanced Global History classes (n = 82) participated in the study. Each class was randomly assigned a treatment condition: Student Generated concept map, Pre-Generated concept map, and No concept map/control group. The participants in the Student Generated concept map built their own concept map using terms given to them during the game playing sessions. The participants in the Pre-Generated concept map group received a concept map that was constructed by the researcher using the official Civilization III (Civ III) Instruction Manual (Atari & Firaxis Games, 2001).

The results indicate that there was not a significant difference between the treatment groups in game performance, game knowledge, and historical understanding. However, the participants' responses and comment made in their journals shows that the student did learn about theoretical history and history in general. Dr. John Keller's Instructional Materials Motivation Scale (IMMS) was used in this study to measure student motivation. The results indicate that the no concept map groups' motivation for the treatment improved compared to their motivation for the regular class room instruction. The Student Generated and Pre-Generated concept map groups' motivation declined for the treatment unit compared to their motivation for the regular classroom instruction. Recommendations for teachers, educational software developers, and future research are included.


Charsky, D.G. Evaluation of the effectiveness of integrating concept maps and computer games to teach historical understanding. Ph.D. thesis, University of Northern Colorado. Retrieved April 23, 2019 from .

This record was imported from ProQuest on October 23, 2013. [Original Record]

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Cited By

  1. From Oregon Trail to Peacemaker: Providing a Framework for Effective Integration of Video Games into the Social Studies Classroom

    Dennis Charsky, Ithaca College, United States; Michael Barbour, Wayne State University, United States

    Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference 2010 (Mar 29, 2010) pp. 1853–1860

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