Using Alternate Reality Games to Support Language Learning

T.M. Connolly, M. Stansfield, J. Josephson (UK), N. Lázaro, G. Rubio (Spain), C.R. Ortiz (The Netherlands), N. Tsvetkova, and S. Tsvetanova (Bulgaria)


ARGs, motivation, collaboration, social networks, modern foreign languages


It is recognised that games play an important role in child development. Nowadays with children growing up in a highly technologically-rich society, many of these games are computer/console based. These types of games, which we will refer to generically as computer games in this paper, have been of interest to researchers from many different perspectives, some positive (for example, motivation, engagement, learning, skills development) and some negative (for example, violence, aggression, gender stereotyping). One particular type of game that has not been explored in detail for educational purposes is the Alternate Reality Game (ARG), a form of interactive narrative, often involving multiple media and game elements, to tell a story that may be affected by participants’ ideas or actions. In this paper we describe the use of an ARG to help support the teaching and learning of modern foreign languages by European secondary school children (ages 11-18).

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