1 Center of IST, Sofia University St Kliment Ohridski (BULGARIA)
2 Sofia University (BULGARIA)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN19 Proceedings
Publication year: 2019
Pages: 2425-2434
ISBN: 978-84-09-12031-4
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2019.0658
Conference name: 11th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 1-3 July, 2019
Location: Palma, Spain
Puzzle-type games traditionally take part in many educational practices and teachers easily adapt them to their specific educational context. In the same time, many teachers hesitate to integrate educational video games in class. Exploring puzzle and other mini-games in a framework of maze game scenario can facilitate and support teachers to develop and implement smart adaptive video games in class.

The present paper aims to propose theoretical research on puzzle games in the scope of learning and motivational theories. It explores their role and impact on developing adaptive games scenarios based on a maze video game applied as a container of embedded puzzles.

The first part of the paper provides an overview of the game-based learning theories and insights of using video games in classroom educational settings. Then, puzzle-based learning concepts are identified within a taxonomy including types and elements of various puzzle games and reflecting on their impact on learning. An analysis of the puzzle models and preferences is provided, discussing how puzzle and mini-games can personalize learning content and dynamically adapt learning experience according to learner character. Thus, the video games will be tailored to specific characteristics of the individual learner such as learner´s outcomes and learning style. The learner profile will be identified in the playing process in the initial part of the maze containing puzzle and other embedded mini-games.

Identified puzzle models and preferences for a personalized and adapted game-based learning help us for building effective and motivational educational maze video games in the scope of the APOGEE (smArt adaPtive videO GamEs for Education) project. The APOGEE platform allows teachers and end-users to construct and generate educational maze games providing personalized and adapted learning experience. Based on the research results provided in this paper, there are designed scenarios for personalized educational experiences motivating teachers to apply educational video games in class. In this way, the APOGEE approach supports educators in the implementation of personalized and student-focused learning through an integrated framework for designing smart adaptable maze video games.

The research leading to these results has received funding from the APOGEE project, funded by the Bulgarian National Science Fund, Grant Agreement No. DN12/7/2017.
Puzzle-based learning, maze games, educational experiences, personalization.