You are here:

Enhancing Economics Learning using Classroom Experiments on Mobile Applications in Higher Education

, , , Hong Kong Baptist University

World Conference on Mobile and Contextual Learning, in Concordia University Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA ISBN 978-1-939797-36-0


We have proposed that implementing classroom experiments is one of the strategies that optimizes the use of mobile devices. Traditionally, classroom experiments are conducted in hand-run form or in computerized, usually online, form. We have compared different means of running classroom experiments and discussed some of the pedagogical and practical concerns faced by instructors, namely the cost of pre-class preparation, in-class implementation and post-class preparation. Introducing a mobile app that implements classroom games and experiments does not only enhance active learning in economics, but it also significantly reduces the implementation costs.


Man, K.L.R., Naidu, S.J. & Chow, H.C.E. (2018). Enhancing Economics Learning using Classroom Experiments on Mobile Applications in Higher Education. In D. Parsons, R. Power, A. Palalas, H. Hambrock & K. MacCallum (Eds.), Proceedings of 17th World Conference on Mobile and Contextual Learning (pp. 30-35). Concordia University Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA. Retrieved March 21, 2019 from .


View References & Citations Map


  1. Andreu Andrés, M.A., & García Casas, M. (2011). Perceptions of gaming as experiential learning by engineering students. International Journal of Engineering Education, 27(4), 795–804.
  2. Angelini, M.L. (2016). Integration of the pedagogical models “simulation” and “flipped classroom” in teacher instruction. SAGE Open, 6(1).
  3. Angelini, M.L., García-Carbonell, A., & Martínez-Alzamora, N. (2015). Estudio cuantitativo discreto sobre la simulación telemática en el aprendizaje del ingles. [Quantitative study about telematic simulation in learning]. RIE Revista Iberoamericana de Educación, 69(2), 51–68
  4. Ball, S.B., & Eckel, C.C. (2004). Using technology to facilitate active learning in economics through experiments. Social Science Computer Review, 22(4), 469-478.
  5. Ball, S.B., Eckel, C., & Rojas, C. (2006). Technology improves learning in large principles of economics classes: Using our WITS. American Economic Review, 96(2), 442-446.
  6. Balkenborg, D., & Kaplan, T. (2009). Economic classroom experiments. Economics.
  7. Becker, W.E., & Watts, M. (1996). Chalk and talk: A national survey on teaching undergraduate economics. The American Economic Review, 86(2), 448-453.
  8. Becker, W.E., & Watts, M. (2001). Teaching economics at the start of the 21st century: Still chalk-and-talk. American Economic Review, 91(2), 446-451.
  9. Bellur, S., Nowak, K.L., & Hull, K.S. (2015). Make it our time: In class multitaskers have lower academic performance. Computers in Human Behavior, 53, 63-70.
  10. Berman, R.A. (2014). Engaging students requires a renewed focus on teaching. Chronicle of Higher Education, 61(3), 2830.
  11. Boulos, M.N.K., Wheeler, S., Tavares, C., & Jones, R. (2011). How smartphones are changing the face of mobile and participatory healthcare: an overview, with example from eCAALYX. Biomedical engineering online, 10(1), 24.
  12. Carter, L.K., & Emerson, T.L. (2012). In-class vs. Online experiments: Is there a difference?. The Journal of Economic Education, 43(1), 4-18.
  13. Cheng, P.H., Yang, Y.T.C., Chang, S.H.G., & Kuo, F.R.R. (2016). 5E mobile inquiry learning approach for enhancing learning motivation and scientific inquiry ability of university students. IEEE Transactions on Education, 59(2), 147153.
  14. Crocco, F., Offenholley, K., & Hernandez, C. (2016). A proof-of-concept study of game-based learning in higher education. Simulation & Gaming, 47(4), 403-422.
  15. Crompton, H. (2013). A Historical Overview of M-Learning: Toward Learner-Centered Education Through the study of recent histories, this chapter provides a historical view of the field of electronic learning. The chapter begins by explicating the philosophical, pedagogical, and conceptual underpinnings regarding learning, particularly toward learnercentered pedagogies. This is followed by a discussion of the technology, covering the evolution of the hardware/software, its adoption into society, and how these technological.... In Handbook of mobile learning (pp. 41-52). Routledge.
  16. Denker, K.J. (2013). Student response systems and facilitating the large lecture basic communication course: Assessing engagement and learning. Communication Teacher, 27(1), 50-69.
  17. Dickie, M. (2006). Do classroom experiments increase learning in introductory microeconomics?. The Journal of Economic Education, 37(3), 267-288.
  18. Dietz, S., & Henrich, C. (2014). Texting as a distraction to learning in college students. Computers in Human behavior, 36, 163-167.
  19. Durham, Y., McKinnon, T., & Schulman, C. (2007). Classroom experiments: Not just fun and games. Economic Inquiry, 45(1), 162-178.
  20. Eisenkopf, G., & Sulser, P.A. (2016). Randomized controlled trial of teaching methods: Do classroom experiments improve economic education in high schools?. The Journal of Economic Education, 47(3), 211-225.
  21. Emerson, T.L., & English, L.K. (2016). Classroom experiments: Teaching specific topics or promoting the economic way of thinking?. The Journal of Economic Education, 47(4), 288-299.
  22. Emerson, T.L., & Taylor, B.A. (2004). Comparing student achievement across experimental and lecture-oriented sections of a principles of microeconomics course. Southern Economic Journal, 672-693.
  23. Frank, B. (1997). The impact of classroom experiments on the learning of economics: An empirical investigation. Economic Inquiry, 35(4), 763-769.
  24. Freeman, S., Eddy, S.L., McDonough, M., Smith, M.K., Okoroafor, N., Jordt, H., & Wenderoth, M.P. (2014). Active learning increases student performance in science, engineering, and mathematics. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 111(23), 8410-8415.
  25. García Carbonell, A., & Watts Hooge, F.I. (2012). Investigación empírica del aprendizaje con simulación telemática. Revista Iberoamericana de Educación (versión digital), 59(3), 1–11.
  26. Ghosh, S., & Renna, F. (2009). Using electronic response systems in economics classes. Journal of Economic Education, 40(4), 354-365.
  27. Goffe, W.L., & Kauper, D. (2014). A survey of principles instructors: Why lecture prevails. The Journal of Economic Education, 45(4), 360-375.
  28. Gremmen, H., & Potters, J. (1997). Assessing the efficacy of gaming in economic education. The Journal of Economic Education, 28(4), 291-303.
  29. Gremmen, H., & Van den Brekel, G. (2013). Do Classroom experiments increase student motivation? A pilot study. European Scientific Journal, ESJ, 9(19).
  30. Heflin, H., Shewmaker, J., & Nguyen, J. (2017). Impact of mobile technology on student attitudes, engagement, and learning. Computers & Education, 107, 91-99.
  31. Herrington, J., Ostashewski, N., Reid, D., & Flintoff, K. (2014). Mobile technologies in teacher education. In Successful Teacher Education (pp. 137-151). SensePublishers, Rotterdam.
  32. Holt, C.A. (1999). Teaching economics with classroom experiments: A symposium. Southern Economic Journal, 603610.
  33. Khaddage, F. (2013, March). The iPad global embrace! Are we branding mobile learning?. In Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference(pp. 3234-3240). Association for the Advancement of
  34. Kuh, G.D. (2009). What student affairs professionals need to know about student engagement. Journal of college student development, 50(6), 683-706.
  35. Lippmann, S. (2013). Facilitating class sessions for ego-piercing engagement. New Directions for Teaching and Learning, 135, 43-48
  36. Maxwell, N.L., Mergendoller, J.R., & Bellisimo, Y. (2005). Problem-based learning and high school macroeconomics: A comparative study of instructional methods. The Journal of Economic Education, 36(4), 315-329.
  37. Miller, J.D., & Rebelein, R.P. (2012). 30 Research on the effectiveness of non-traditional pedagogies. International handbook on teaching and learning economics, 323.
  38. Park, Y. (2011). A pedagogical framework for mobile learning: Categorizing educational applications of mobile technologies into four types. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 12(2), 78-102.
  39. Robertson, B., Schumacher, L., Gosman, G., Kanfer, R., Kelley, M., & DeVita, M. (2009). Simulation-based crisis team training for multidisciplinary obstetric providers. Simululation in Healthcare, 4(2), 77–83.
  40. Rocca, K.A. (2010). Student participation in the college classroom: An extended multidisciplinary literature review. Communication Education, 59(2), 185-213.
  41. Rupp, N.G. (2014). Teaching economics with a bag of chocolate: A classroom experiment for elementary school students. International Review of Economics Education, 16, 122-128.
  42. Salemi, M.K. (2009). Clickenomics: Using a classroom response system to increase student engagement in a largeenrollment principles of economics course. Journal of Economic Education, 40(4), 385-404.
  43. Sung, Y.T., Chang, K.E., & Liu, T.C. (2016). The effects of integrating mobile devices with teaching and learning on students' learning performance: A meta-analysis and research synthesis. Computers & Education, 94, 252-275.
  44. Ting, Y.L. (2012). The pitfalls of mobile devices in learning: A different view and implications for pedagogical design. Journal of Educational Computing Research, 46(2), 119-134.
  45. Watts, M., & Becker, W.E. (2008). A little more than chalk and talk: Results from a third national survey of teaching methods in undergraduate economics courses. The Journal of Economic Education, 39(3), 273-286.
  46. Vlachopoulos, D., & Makri, A. (2017). The use of games and simulations in higher education can improve students' cognitive and behavioural skills. Impact of Social Sciences Blog.
  47. Watts, M., & Schaur, G. (2011). Teaching and assessment methods in undergraduate economics: A fourth national quinquennial survey. The Journal of Economic Education, 42(3), 294-309.
  48. Yamarik, S. (2007). Does cooperative learning improve student learning outcomes?. The journal of economic education, 38(3), 259-277.

These references have been extracted automatically and may have some errors. If you see a mistake in the references above, please contact