Games and Simulations Barriers Article

Justice, L. J. & Ritzhaupt, A. D. (2015). Identifying the barriers to games and simulations in education: Creating a valid and reliable survey instrument. Journal of Educational Technology Systems, 44(1), 86 – 125.

Abstract: The purpose of this study was to create a valid and reliable instrument to measure teacher perceived barriers to the adoption of games and simulations in education. Previous research, interviews with educators, a focus group, a think-aloud protocol, and an expert review were used to design a survey instrument. After finalization, the survey was made available for trial on the Internet for a group of educators (N=255). A portion of the survey required respondents to rate to what degree 32 potential barriers were perceived as an impediment to the adoption of games and simulations. Some of the highest rated barriers included cost of equipment, lack of time to plan and implement, inability to try before purchasing, lack of balance between entertainment and education, lack of available lesson plans/examples, lack of alignment to state standards/standardized testing, inability to customize a game/ simulation, and inability to track student progress within the game/simulation. An exploratory factor analysis identified seven factors that accounted for 67% of the variability in the respondents’ rankings. Several factors were found to have significant interactions with other questions on the survey. Implications of these results, as well as suggestions for future research, are discussed.