Background and Objectives: Today, the presence of computers in training classes has been expanded. Therefore, preparing appropriate software and games as well as conducting research to examine their impact on education and their comparison with the traditional teaching method (face-to-face and PowerPoint) is essential. However, a game-based and a professional software-based teaching method as compared to the traditional teaching method has not been evaluated from the perspective of the students including various aspects, such as motivation, satisfaction, interaction, pleasure and learning. This study aims at making a comparison between the evaluation of various teaching methods, including game-based , professional software-based , and traditional teaching method. The evaluation of each of these three methods has been conducted from the perspective of the students in one of the courses of the field of Financial Management, using measures such as pleasure and interaction.
Methods: First, the theoretical framework and the research hypothesis were determined based on the literature on three teaching methods, including game-based and professional software-based, and traditional teaching methods. The statistical population of this study comprised of 70 individuals who were undergraduate students of the course of technical analysis at the Financial Centre of Iran as well as at the Association of Stock Exchange Brokers. The selection of this course was due to the possibility of running all the three teaching methods in the time period of conducting this research. The evaluation data for each of these teaching methods were gathered, using a separate closed questionnaire (totally 3 questionnaires) with 5-point Likert scale. The questionnaires of the traditional and software teaching methods were distributed after 3 sessions of the classes had passed and the questionnaire of the game-based teaching method was distributed after 14 days of running the game (this was one of the time periods defined in the game). The data were analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics using SPSS and Excel. The paired t-test was used to analyze the differences in the evaluation of the three teaching methods at the significance level equal to 0.005. The normality of data was tested and confirmed by using Kolmogorov-Smirnov test before running the paired t-test.
Findings: In the comparison of professional software-based with the traditional teaching method at the significance level of 0.000 and t= 6.454, it can be said that professional software-based teaching was better. In the comparison of game-based with traditional teaching method at the significance level of 0.000 and t=6.097, it can be said that game-based teaching method was better. In the comparison of professional software-based with game-based teaching method, at the significance level of 0.000 and t=4.861, it can be said that game-based teaching method was better. The mean for game-based teaching method was significantly much higher than that of the other teaching methods. This means that based on their ability, the students were more satisfied with the game-based teaching method; they regarded this method more interactive; they have enjoyed this teaching method more than the others; and this teaching method has increased their motivation, and they have regarded it more effective in their learning.
Conclusions: With respect to the significant difference in the evaluation of the game-based teaching method compared with other two teaching methods, it is recommended that the educational institutes, teachers and developers of computer games pay more attention to game-based teaching method and gamification with the teaching objectives. At least, based on the subject and content of the course, besides the traditional method (face-to-face and PowerPoint) which is a common method in teaching, use of a combination of various teaching methods including game-based professional software-based teaching method along with the traditional method can be beneficial and increase the level of satisfaction, learning, motivation, capability, interaction and pleasure of the students. Lack of teaching games relevant to academic courses was one of the main challenges of this research. As a result, it was impossible to study the effect of game elements (such as leaderboards, scores, medals, …) in teaching through game-based method. Due to the impossibility of running educational games related to academic courses in the time period in which the research was being conducted, the spatial scope of the research was limited to two organizations in Tehran province and it was impossible to gather data from other educational institutions and in other classrooms for the other courses.
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