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Playing in and with a foreign language: an expert survey on the potential of Serious Games for foreign language learning

Peter Mechant (UGent) , Jan Van Looy (UGent) and Frederik De Grove (UGent)
(2010)
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Abstract
In this paper we explore the potential of serious games for foreign language learning. Serious games could provide added value compared to traditional or group teaching because they create an engaging and self-motivating environment. Moreover, skills can be conveyed in an implicit manner because gaming technology affords realistic contexts and immersive environments with a strong fun-factor.Our paper sketches the results from a SWOT-analysis on the use of serious games for the field of foreign language learning. This SWOT-analysis was carried out in two stages. First, a literature review identified the key internal and external factors for the implementation of serious games in foreign language learning. Next, these factors were evaluated and commented upon by 47 international e-learning professionals and experts (software, serious games, CALL, blended learning ...) through an online survey. Our findings show that the belief in the potential of (foreign language) learning games is rather strong. Furthermore, serious games are not seen as standalone solutions but need to be embedded into a broader framework. Results also show that there is no broad consensus on how the balance between learning and games should be conceived and operationalised and to what extent video games can be useful to learn a foreign language.
Keywords
SWOT, foreign language learning, CALL, Serious games, expert survey

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Chicago
Mechant, Peter, Jan Van Looy, and Frederik De Grove. 2010. “Playing in and with a Foreign Language: An Expert Survey on the Potential of Serious Games for Foreign Language Learning.” In Iated.
APA
Mechant, P., Van Looy, J., & De Grove, F. (2010). Playing in and with a foreign language: an expert survey on the potential of Serious Games for foreign language learning. Presented at the International conference on education and new learning technologies, Iated.
Vancouver
1.
Mechant P, Van Looy J, De Grove F. Playing in and with a foreign language: an expert survey on the potential of Serious Games for foreign language learning. Iated; 2010.
MLA
Mechant, Peter, Jan Van Looy, and Frederik De Grove. “Playing in and with a Foreign Language: An Expert Survey on the Potential of Serious Games for Foreign Language Learning.” Iated, 2010. Print.
@inproceedings{1021287,
  abstract     = {In this paper we explore the potential of serious games for foreign language learning. Serious games could provide added value compared to traditional or group teaching because they create an engaging and self-motivating environment. Moreover, skills can be conveyed in an implicit manner because gaming technology affords realistic contexts and immersive environments with a strong fun-factor.Our paper sketches the results from a SWOT-analysis on the use of serious games for the field of foreign language learning. 
This SWOT-analysis was carried out in two stages. First, a literature review identified the key internal and external factors for the implementation of serious games in foreign language learning. Next, these factors were evaluated and commented upon by 47 international e-learning professionals and experts (software, serious games, CALL, blended learning ...) through an online survey. 
Our findings show that the belief in the potential of (foreign language) learning games is rather strong. Furthermore, serious games are not seen as standalone solutions but need to be embedded into a broader framework. Results also show that there is no broad consensus on how the balance between learning and games should be conceived and operationalised and to what extent video games can be useful to learn a foreign language.},
  author       = {Mechant, Peter and Van Looy, Jan and De Grove, Frederik},
  isbn         = {978-84-613-9386-2},
  keyword      = {SWOT,foreign language learning,CALL,Serious games,expert survey},
  language     = {eng},
  location     = {Barcelona},
  publisher    = {Iated},
  title        = {Playing in and with a foreign language: an expert survey on the potential of Serious Games for foreign language learning},
  year         = {2010},
}