Using commercial video games in flipped classrooms to support physical concept construction

S. H. Ye, T. Y. Hsiao, Chuen-Tsai Sun*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Based on the flipped-classroom model and the potential motivational and instructional benefits of digital games, we describe a flipped game-based learning (FGBL) strategy focused on preclass and overall learning outcomes. A secondary goal is to determine the effects, if any, of the classroom aspects of the FGBL strategy on learning efficiency. Our experiments involved 2 commercial games featuring physical motion concepts: Ballance (Newton's law of motion) and Angry Birds (mechanical energy conservation). We randomly assigned 87 8th-grade students to game instruction (digital game before class and lecture-based instruction in class), FGBL strategy (digital game before class and cooperative learning in the form of group discussion and practice in class), or lecture-based instruction groups (no gameplay). Results indicate that the digital games exerted a positive effect on preclass learning outcomes and that FGBL-strategy students achieved better overall learning outcomes than their lecture-based peers. Our observation of similar overall outcomes between the cooperative learning and lecture-based groups suggests a need to provide additional teaching materials or technical support when introducing video games to cooperative classroom learning activities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)602-614
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Computer Assisted Learning
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2018


  • flipped classroom
  • game-based learning
  • science learning
  • secondary education

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