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Gendering the European Parliament

What Do Different Assessment Techniques Tell Us About the Effectiveness of Board Gaming on Student Learning?

Decision Making
Higher Education
Agnes Simon
Masaryk University
Agnes Simon
Masaryk University

To evaluate the effectiveness of board games, scholars use both qualitative and quantitative data—and often arrive at different conclusions based on the nature of their data even about the very same active learning exercise. This paper investigates how introducing a complex table-top board game into an introductory international relations course improved student performance. Particularly, using both qualitative and quantitative data I evaluate student learning on the immediate subject—leaders and foreign policy decision-making—and in the course in general as well as on the immediate and short run. While the literature use both survey and grade percentage to assess the impact of active learning methods in international relations, articles that employ and compare both kinds of data are rare. To make up for this gap, I compare soft (survey) and hard data (grades and exam performance) about the board gaming experience of my students. After showing the discrepancies that emerge from using different kind of data, I discuss what this means for the particular active learning experiment evaluated in this paper as well as the for the various assessment techniques and expectations about active learning methods in general.
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