Massive Multiplayer Online Games Communities: Lessons for Diversity in School Classrooms


Computer gaming is often seen as a barrier to good performance at school. It is claimed that young people are becoming more obese, demonstrating poor psychological adjustment and developing addictions to video games (Kulman, 2015). However, by using a systems approach to the understanding of group dynamics, based the Hackman and Morris (1975) Input-Process-Output Model of Group Performance, it is possible to find that there are lessons in learner experience from computer games, particularly the Massively Multiplayer Online (MMO) Games such as World of Warcraft, which may be applied to schools. By examining the Macro, Meso and Micro levels (Hackman and Morris, 1975) and the accompanying Environmental Factors (Chou, 2015) of these two different communities, it may be seen that there are positive aspects of computer gaming that might be helpful in managing today’s highly diverse school communities. Meso level characteristics from MMO Games such as “self-organising” groups and Environmental Factors such as positive motivational drivers (e.g, empowering creativity and ownership) may be beneficial in developing a more learner-centred classroom. These characteristics could at least partially replace the “concocted” groups and negative loss avoidance motivational strategies that currently exist in European schools. This may go some way to developing classrooms in which diversity among students is respected rather than treated with contempt.

Author Information
Bobbie Fletcher, Staffordshire University, UK
Barbara Emadi-Coffin, Staffordshire University, UK
Janet Hetherington, Staffordshire University, UK

Paper Information
Conference: ECE2016
Stream: Student Learning, Learner Experiences and Learner Diversity

This paper is part of the ECE2016 Conference Proceedings (View)
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon