When designing my research project, I wanted the research activities that I used for data collection to follow actual class activities as much as possible. I wanted the activities to be useful and replicable by other teachers in a normal classroom setting, with little or no disruption to student learning. Therefore, my project incorporates lessons about traditional narrative writing techniques, projects and end products that students might create in a typical English classroom, and common forms of formative assessments—such as self-reflections, peer feedback activities, and standardized tests for reading comprehension.
In this mixed methodology research study, subjects:
The qualitative data from the self-reflection questions was coded to identify and compare student thought processes as they related to creating narratives at the beginning, middle, and end of the research project.
Peer assessments provided quantitative data in the form of a rating scale-based questionnaire, which students used to assess the presence and effectiveness of specific story elements in the stories and games of their peers. The total scores for the text-only narratives and the total scores for the interactive narrative games were then compared to assess how students viewed the two narrative forms.
The pretest and posttest included multiple choice questions about a specific story passage and followed a format utilized by the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (https://www.caaspp.org/), a website run by the California Department of Education that provides standardized tests, including an assessment that is administered to students during their junior year of high school. The quantitative data from the tests was used to compare student reading comprehension scores between the beginning and the end of the video game creation phase of the research project.
If there was one element that I would revise in my project, it would probably be the reading comprehension tests. While this format was useful for this initial round of data collection, this was a rather general approach to gathering reading comprehension data. In the future, I would like to create my own more focused reading comprehension tests that target specific reading abilities. I would also like to adapt these tests so that they can accurately and comprehensively assess student abilities to understand similar elements in other forms of media and multimodal texts.
Learners and Demographics
In order to better understand the learners that we were seeking to help through our research, my graduate program utilized the SITE model. The SITE model offers teachers a way to develop a better understanding of the Educational context of a student by identifying the Sociocultural, Informational, and Technical subcontexts in which the student lives and learns.
The following characteristics were used to better identify the learners whom I focused on in my research.
The learners in my study may be influenced by:
The learners in my study may be knowledgable in:
The learners in my study may use:
On a superficial level, my research project is about creating video games using Google Slides. However, what I discovered through my reading and my research is so much deeper and richer than that. When conveying my results, I really wanted to make sure that I was communicating to my audience all the power and potential that the human brain has to shape our reality through narratives. That is why my project is really about virtual worlds.
When designing my logo, I wanted the image to convey a sense of mystery and possibilities. Many great novels, especially science fiction and fantasy books, deal with ideas of portals or magic doors that take the characters to another world. I wanted to invoke those images and feelings by creating a graphic that includes a glowing open doorway with a printed page as the door.
Colors and Text: