Towards a Framework for Metacognition in Game-Based Learning

Eelco Braad, Nick Degens, Wijnand IJsselsteijn

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperAcademic

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Game-based learning can motivate learners and help them to acquire new knowledge in an active way. However, it is not always clear for learners how to learn effectively and efficiently within game-based learning environments. As metacognition comprises the knowledge and skills that learners employ to plan, monitor, regulate, and evaluate their learning, it plays a key role in improving their learning in general. Thus, if we want learners to become better at learning through game-based learning, we need to investigate how metacognition can be integrated into the design of game-based learning environments.

In this paper we introduce a framework that aids designers and researchers to formally specify the design of game-based learning environments encouraging metacognition. With a more formal specification of the metacognitive objectives and the way the training design and game design aims to achieve these goals, we can learn more through analysing and comparing different approaches. The framework consists of design dimensions regarding metacognitive outcomes, metacognitive training, and metacognitive game design. Each design dimension represents two opposing directions for the design of a game-based learning environment that are likely to affect the encouragement of metacognitive awareness within learners. As such, we introduce a formalised method to design, evaluate and compare games addressing metacognition, thus enabling both researchers and designers to create more effective games for learning in the future.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2 Oct 2019
Event13th European Games-Based Learning Conference - Odense, Denmark
Duration: 2 Oct 20194 Oct 2019


Conference13th European Games-Based Learning Conference
Abbreviated titleECGBL
Internet address


  • computer games
  • cognition


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