In this review of literature on the relationship between game-based learning and college dropout-rate, eighteen studies are included. Most of them are peer-reviewed, with ten out of eighteen are less than ten years old. A meta-analysis, a report and international studies are also reviewed. A study of Astin (1964) was excluded because of the out-of-date information. The findings are divided into three main sections: college dropout rate, motivation, and learning principles embedded in game-based learning.
College dropout rate
According to Barefoot (2004), dropout (or short term stop out, or transfer) has turned out to be a big issue to almost all colleges and universities in the US as the reduction in the number of students “can be catastrophic to the operating budget” (p.10). National Center for Education Statistics showed that only 49% students beginning their study at higher education level in 2003-04 could take some postsecondary degree by June 2009 (as cited in Ross, et al., 2012).
The problem arising from dropout does not exist only in the US, but rather all over the world. Spanish Coordination University Council (2002) revealed that over a quarter of undergraduate students decide to put an end to their studies without graduation or take another degree. Dropout rate in Spain as well as other countries in Europe varies from 30% to 50% (Araque, Roldan, & Salguero, 2009). A similar figure is also found in some studies about higher education dropout in South Africa (Breier, 2010).
Choy (2002) attributed the US dropout rate to “academic preparation, socioeconomic status, family participation in higher education”, and gender (as cited in Barefoot, 2004, p.12). “Goal commitment”, “boredom”, “dissatisfaction”, “poor institut...
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...Ahmad and Jaafar, 2012).
According to Kiili (2005), memory capacity of students is also assumed to improve through visual, auditory, and haptic input simultaneously provided by game in form of multimedia learning. Schrand (2008) commented that students with spatial intelligence would gain benefit from visual elements in teaching and learning activities. Teamwork is too encouraged within each multitask group in multiplayer games (Ahmad & Jaafar, 2012; Ebner & Holzinger, 2007), which contributes the development of interpersonal and intrapersonal intelligence (Kezar, 2001). Moreover, games give learners plenty opportunities to expose to life-like situations with fear-free experience (Begg, Dewhurst, & Macleaod., 2005; Coller & Shernoff, 2009; Ebner & Holzinger, 2007), consequently, better and more committed performance is produced (Begg, Dewhurst, & Macleaod, 2005).
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