Serious games as catalyst for intercultural literacy development? : a case study of Immigropoly
This thesis inquires into whether a specific online game could be used as a catalyst for intercultural literacy development. The case study focused on Immigropoly, a game aimed at introducing the hardships of immigrants to society at large in Europe by putting players in control of a fictional immigrant character and tasking them with getting that character safely to Europe. The interest towards this topic is two-fold. First, it deals with immigration, a hot topic with tremendous societal impact, and how to better cope with similar intercultural phenomena. Secondly, the usage of computers and computer games as a medium to convey information is something that is quite often discussed, and touches many facets of intercultural communication. The empirical study was conducted as qualitative interviews of selected test players with the BNIM (Biographic Narrative Interpretive Method) approach. The driving research question is ”How do players of Immigropoly describe their gaming experience related to issues of learning?” To ascertain this, relevant theoretical concepts such experiential learning, transfer of learning and general definitions of what intercultural literacy and serious games are were introduced. According to the results, the notion of the importance of the game was prevalent in most the answers gained from the test players. Despite difficulties and problems related to using games for such educational purposes, several new research directions and ideas could be introduced. ...
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