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Research

Progress

Context

Missions with Monty is a three-year project funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF). The project aims to achieve two major goals:

  1. To design, develop, and iteratively refine a game-based learning program for 5th grade students that improves comprehension monitoring and supports science learning. 

  2. To increase our current theoretical and practical understanding of how elementary students engage with and monitor their comprehension of informational science texts.

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Research Findings

Our team has conducted studies to examine the effects of Missions with Monty on students' reading comprehension, science knowledge, metacognition, and motivation. Results indicate that Missions with Monty has significant positive impacts on the outcome measures of interest. 

Reading Comprehension

Students who play Missions with Monty show more improvements in reading comprehension compared to students who don't play.

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Science Knowledge

Students who play Missions with Monty show significant improvements in science knowledge regardless of monitoring condition.

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Metacognitive Monitoring Accuracy

Students who play Missions with Monty show significant improvements in metacognitive monitoring accuracy regardless of monitoring condition

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Reading Motivation

Students who play Missions with Monty report increased motivation to read compared to students who did not play.

Note: The motivation measure was a composite of reading value, reading efficacy, reading interest, intrinsic motivation, and extrinsic motivation. 

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Publications and Presentations

Syal, S., & Nietfeld, J. L. (2024). Examining the effects of a game-based learning environment on fifth graders’ reading comprehension and reading motivation. Journal of Educational Psychology. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1037/edu0000874 (PDF Available Here)


Young, T. M., Sperling, R. A., & Nietfeld, J. (2024, August). How fifth-graders explain their game-based learning environment performance. American Psychological Association 2024 Convention, Seattle, WA, United States. 

Nietfeld, J. L. (2024, January). The relationships between text interest, usefulness, and performance within a game-based learning environment. Annual meeting of Hawaii International Conference on Education, Honolulu, HI, United States.

 

Sperling, R. A., & Nietfeld, J. (2023, August). The Impact of a Game-Based Learning Environment on Fifth-Graders’ Reading Comprehension. Annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Washington D. C., United States.


Young, T. M., Sperling, R. A., & Nietfeld, J. (2023, August). Examining fifth graders' attributions for performance in a game-based learning environment. Annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Washington D. C., United States.

 

Nietfeld, J. & Syal, S. (2023, April) The Impact of a Game-Based Learning Environment on Fifth Graders’ Motivation and Reading Comprehension. American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting, Chicago, IL, United States.

Young, T. M. & Sperling, R. A. (2023, April). Examining Fifth Graders' Use of a Game-Based Learning Environment. American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting, Chicago, IL, United States.

 

Nietfeld, J., Syal, S., & Lewis, M. (2023, March). The integration of a problem-solving based measure of transfer in a digital game-based learning environment. Annual meeting of International, Technology, Education and Development Conference, Valencia, Spain.

Sperling, R. A.,Young, T. M., Cattell, M., Day, M., Kapusta, R., & Sabatini, S. (2023, March). Missions with Monty: A Science Literacy Adventure Game. Discovery Summit, The Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA, United States.

 

Sperling, R. A., Nietfeld, J. L., Syal, S. & Young, T. M. (2022, October). Missions with Monty: A Game-Based Learning Environment to Promote Comprehension Monitoring and Science Achievement. European Conference on Games Based Learning, Lisbon, Portugal.

MacCormac, A., Monahan, R. & Nietfeld, J. (2022). Inside Their Minds: Student Reactions to a Game-Based Learning Environment. In T. Bastiaens (Ed.), Proceedings of EdMedia + Innovate Learning (pp. 1163-1168). New York City, NY, United States: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE). Retrieved July 11, 2022 from https://www.learntechlib.org/primary/p/221429/

Wang, Y., DiFrancesca, D., Sperling, R. A., Young, T. M., & Syal, S. (2022, April). Investigating Fifth Graders Multiple-Text Comprehension About Ecosystems Within A Game-Based Learning Environment. American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting, San Diego, CA, United States

Nietfeld, J. L., Syal, S., & Sperling, R. (2022, March). Examining the timing of metacognitive monitoring judgments in a game-based learning environment. Annual meeting of International, Technology, Education and Development Conference, Valencia, Spain.

Nietfeld, J. L., & Syal, S. (2022, January). The role of gender on motivation and performance in a game-based learning environment for science. Annual meeting of Hawaii International Conference on Education, Honolulu, HI, United States.

Syal, S., Wang, Y., Tise, J. C., & Sperling, R. A. (2020, August). Examining the Psychometric Properties of the 2 × 2 Achievement Goal Questionnaire Among Children. Annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Washington D. C., United States.

Wang, Y., Sperling, R. A., Tise, J. C., Syal, S., DiFrancesca, D., & Young, T. M. (2020, August). Understanding children's monitoring in science text comprehension. Annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Washington, D. C., United States. 

 

Tise, J. C., Wang, Y., Sperling, R. A., Syal, S., DiFrancesca, D. & Young, T. M. (2020, April). How Self-Reported Metacognition, Calibration Indices, and Self-Efficacy Relate and Moderate. American Education Research Association Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA, United Stateshttp://tinyurl.com/w5mubpp (Conference Canceled)  

Nietfeld, J. L., Eyupoglu, T. F., & Syal, S. (2019, October). The impact of game-based learning design features on reading comprehension and interest. Annual meeting of European Conference on Games Based Learning, Odense, Denmark.

 

Nietfeld, J. L., Eyupoglu, T. F., Syal, S., & Hennes, I. (2019, March). The development of a game-based learning environment to promote science literacy. Annual meeting of International Technology, Education and Development Conference, Valencia, Spain. 

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