Learning and Identity Construction through Gamification in Visual Art Education - A Student Perspective

Matilda Johanna Ståhl, Hannah Kaihovirta, Minna Rimpilä

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
9 Downloads (Pure)


This work in progress was presented on ECGBL in the planning stage (Ståhl & Kaihovirta, 2016) and shortly after the pilot study was conducted (Ståhl, Kaihovirta & Rimpilä, 2017) where we discussed our first impressions and noted that using game elements can enhance visual art education. In this paper, the focus is on a student perspective with transcriptions from the video material supporting our preliminary results.

This pilot study, inspired by Participatory Action Research, where the teacher in collaboration with the researchers designed a learning experience with digital games as an inspiration in visual arts education. The games represented a variety of visual expressions to choose from. During a total of six lessons, the students aged 12-13 worked alone or in pairs and transformed a scene from a digital game to paper cut art and back to a digital photograph. The students first arranged these layers in a certain order to achieve a sense of depth and then photographed the scene by using the camera function in their tablets, with their efforts resulting in a digital photograph. The data discussed in this paper consists of video recordings (370 minutes) focused on two pairs working on the task. However, two other groups chose to work close enough to the intended focus students for the cameras to document a large part of their processes as well. The games these students were inspired by were Journey (2012), Shelter (2013) and Night in the Woods (2017).

The preliminary results indicate that the students have the vocabulary to discuss and negotiate key concepts within visual art education spontaneously by themselves; such as disposition, content, colours and technique. Based on our data, we note that although the students are willing and have the vocabulary to engage in discussions on the visual aesthetics of the game, this type of discussions tend to be initiated by their teacher or one of the researchers. Therefore, we state that gamification in visual art education might offer the students tools to express and analyse the visual environments that are part of their everyday lives.

Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 12th European Conference on Games Based Learning SKEMA Business School Sophia Antipolis, France 4-5 October 2018
EditorsMelanie Ciussi
PublisherAcademic Conferences and Publishing International Limited Reading
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-912764-00-6
ISBN (Print)978-1-911218-99-9
Publication statusPublished - 2018
MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventEuropean conference on games-based learning - European Conference on Games-Based Learning
Duration: 4 Oct 20185 Oct 2018


ConferenceEuropean conference on games-based learning

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