Educational Technology Research and Development

, Volume 67, Issue 1, pp 179–198 | Cite as

The impacts of peer competition-based science gameplay on conceptual knowledge, intrinsic motivation, and learning behavioral patterns

  • Ching-Huei ChenEmail author
Development Article


The present study investigates how the different modes of game-design triggers learning outcomes, focusing on peer learning and intergroup competition. A problem-solving science game was developed to help secondary students to learn about the motion of objects. Participants (N = 110) from an urban middle school were randomly assigned to four game-design conditions (individual-competition, individual-no-competition, peer-competition, and peer-no-competition). The results indicated that the peer-competition and peer-no-competition groups outperformed those in the individual-competition and individual-no-competition groups in terms of conceptual knowledge. Additionally, peer-competition groups exhibited higher interest and value and lower tension than those in the individual gameplay groups. Patterns of learning behavior revealed the emergence of in situ science-related problem solving in the peer-competition mode of GBL. Implications on the effectiveness of game-design for GBL are discussed.


Game-based science learning Competition Learning performance Intrinsic motivation Learning behavioral patterns 



This study was funded by Ministry of Science and Technology in Taiwan (grant number MOST 105-2628-S-018-001-MY3).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

We declare that we have no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© Association for Educational Communications and Technology 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Industrial Education and TechnologyNational Changhua University of EducationChanghuaTaiwan

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