Evaluation of the Pedagogical Quality of Mobile Math Games in App Marketplaces

The number of available educational games has enormously grown and it is difficult for users to identify which games are pedagogically effective among the multitude of options in app marketplaces. Recent studies on math games have highlighted the importance of (1) linking learning attributes and gameplay and (2) game design that supports students’ deliberate practise. Using these as a measure for pedagogical quality, we investigated 109 math games found on Google Play Store (n=61) and iOS App Store (n=48). Furthermore, monetization solutions, data use permissions, target age group and type of mathematical content were retrieved from the apps. The analysis showed that only 11,0% of the games integrated learning attributes with gameplay and 12,0% of the games contained tasks which support learners’ deliberate practice. The most commonly featured math subject was arithmetic and the games were targeted mostly to early childhood (6-12 years). Finally, games following curricula content and recommended design principles were difficult to locate using the search tools of the app marketplaces.
Publication Reference
Laato, Samuli, Renny Lindberg, Teemu H. Laine, Phuong Bui, Boglarka Brezovszky, Lauri Koivunen, Olga De Troyer, and Erno Lehtinen. "Evaluation of the Pedagogical Quality of Mobile Math Games in App Marketplaces." In 2020 IEEE International Conference on Engineering, Technology and Innovation (ICE/ITMC), pp. 1-8. IEEE, 2020.


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