Using RuneScape for language acquisition purposes in an upper secondary EFL classroom
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This MA thesis discusses the effects of using an online game on the English language skills of upper secondary school students using the MMORPG RuneScape. Youngsters spend a great deal of their time on playing online games and, as education is often referred to as a key arena for radical change, educators are encouraged to incorporate the Internet into their lessons in a way that matches the students’ interests while also aiding the learning process. The theoretical part of the thesis gives an overview of previous research done in the field, presenting the results of researchers who have used both online and video games to teach English vocabulary as well as the participants’ opinions on the subject. The empirical part of the thesis is based on the case study conducted among 14 students aged 17-18 at Tartu Jaan Poska Gymnasium in which the students played RuneScape once a week for four weeks and were later interviewed to learn about their views on using commercial games in a conventional classroom environment and whether they thought RuneScape was suitable for language learning. The findings of the case study are analyzed in the context of the material provided in the literature review.
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