How Scenarios can Enhance Serious Games with Augmented Reality: “The Case of the MITAR Serious Game”

By Margot Kaszap, Yaïves Ferland and Catinca-Adriana Stan.

Published by The Technology Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology Augmented Reality (MITAR) game application is a “reinvented” serious game that can be classified as a kind of geocaching game in which one can add augmented reality (AR) objects and information. These games use a Global Positioning System (GPS) that allows children to explore and search the environment to find clues or information given by text, audio or video files added to the game. The MITAR serious game tools allow the teacher to build games with different scenarios for educational purposes. Following a historical overview of what might be serious with games, this paper discusses the implications of selected educational scenarios and of the potential of games to enhance learning in new ways, as tested within the GeoEduc3D research project. Adapting the game to students’ level and abilities, MITAR is particularly useful in geography and history classes as it invites them to explore their environment and then practice problem solving skills.

Keywords: Serious Game, Children, Augmented Reality, Geocaching, Educational Scenario, Mobile Learning, Global Positioning System (GPS), Map Reading, Problem Solving, Geotag

International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society, Volume 8, Issue 4, pp.129-150. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 678.797KB).

Prof. Margot Kaszap

Professor, Faculté des sciences de l'éducation, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, Canada

Margot Kaszap is Full Professor in Social Sciences didactic in the Faculty of Education at Laval University. She is an interdisciplinary scholar in the research team: GéoÉduc 3D and a specialist of qualitative methodologies who teaches and employs Qualitative data analysis software like: NVivo, QDA Miner, Transana, Atlas/ti, MaxQDA. Her main areas of interest are serious gaming with augmented reality. Her current research focuses on how children can explore their social environment (history and geography) and solve problems using a serious game like MITAR.

Yaïves Ferland

Research Professional, Département des Sciences géomatiques, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, Canada

After a decade working as a community and co-operative organizer, Yaïves Ferland got B.Sc. and M.Sc. grades in geomatics (surveying, cartography, land law) that led him to engage in doctoral studies in cognitive geography. The main research questions were and remain: how do humans represent and understand (or not) space and maps and how new information technologies can effectively enhance appropriate skills? That training has been required for another decade for professional researches in Information and Knowledge Management (IKM) by Department of National Defence, particularly about situation awareness. Recent teaching of courses in cartography and methodology maintain such orientations in order to develop and experiment means of spatial recognition and thinking for students.

Catinca-Adriana Stan

Assistant Researcher and lecturer, Faculté des sciences de l'éducation, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, Canada

Catinca-Adriana Stan, PH.D. in History, teaches geography and history in the Faculty of Education Sciences, Laval University, in Québec City, Canada. Her doctoral dissertation was a comparative study of national history textbooks at high school level, in Rumania. She is concerned about the ways by which school develops the citizenship dimension of students, especially through disciplines like geography, history, and literature. She has developed an educational serious game on handheld device (iPad) within the application Laval Virtual. It allows foreign students enrolled in a Laval University’s programme to explore their new campus using a 3D map, GPS location, and augmented reality (AR).


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