Onstage or behind the scenes? Relative learning benefits of simulation role-play and design

Druckman, Daniel and Ebner, Noam (2011) Onstage or behind the scenes? Relative learning benefits of simulation role-play and design. Simulation and Gaming: an international journal of theory, design and research, 39 (4). pp. 465-497. ISSN 1046-8781


In this article, the authors report the results of two experiments that explored hypotheses about the relative learning advantages of role-play and scenario design. The experiments were conducted with similar student populations in Australia and Israel. Using a matched-pairs design, participants were randomly assigned to design and role-play conditions. They worked on their tasks following an hour-long lecture on three negotiation concepts: alternatives, time pressure, and negotiating power. A lecture-only control group was implemented in the Australian experiment. In both experiments, designers, working 'behind the scenes' indicated better concept learning in the short run than their role-play counterparts performing 'onstage', as well as in comparison with the control group. They showed better understanding of the way the concepts are related and retained the learning gains over time. Moreover, the designers were at least as motivated as role-players and controls and, for the Israel participants, showed more motivation. The results, favoring designers, spread widely across the various questions, asked immediately after the experience and 1 week later: 86% of the answers given favored designers in terms of direction; 52% of these were statistically significant. Implications are discussed for explanatory mechanisms, programmatic research, and teaching/training approaches.

Statistics for USQ ePrint 19044
Statistics for this ePrint Item
Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to published version due to publisher copyright policy. First published online: 17 Dec 2007
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - USQ Other
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - USQ Other
Date Deposited: 25 Sep 2011 05:37
Last Modified: 11 Jul 2014 06:44
Uncontrolled Keywords: concept learning; experiments; matched-pairs; motivation; negotiation; retention; role-playing; scenario design
Fields of Research (2008): 13 Education > 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy > 130202 Curriculum and Pedagogy Theory and Development
13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130309 Learning Sciences
17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170110 Psychological Methodology, Design and Analysis
Fields of Research (2020): 39 EDUCATION > 3901 Curriculum and pedagogy > 390102 Curriculum and pedagogy theory and development
39 EDUCATION > 3904 Specialist studies in education > 390409 Learning sciences
52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5201 Applied and developmental psychology > 520105 Psychological methodology, design and analysis
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9302 Teaching and Instruction > 930201 Pedagogy
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1046878107311377
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/19044

Actions (login required)

View Item Archive Repository Staff Only