Sample Essay on Simulation Game Analysis

For the simulations and games to successful for learning, the designers of instruction must approve that the underlying computational models that are used have the required amount of fidelity to the conceptual representation of their actual-world counterparts.  A simulation or game that offers a wrong result is likely to encourage misunderstanding plus adversely interfere with learning and transfer. A lot of methods for approving the accuracy of a computational model exist; it is universal that no method is enough and that many methods for gathering and interpreting users’ interaction data to offer quantified proof that the original computational model of the simulation game symbolizes the conceptual model with enough accuracy. In this research, analysis of patterns in time which usually known as the (APT) was applied to compare game play outcomes from the Diffusion Simulation Game with a forecast founded on diffusion innovations theory.

Executive Summary

There are several tools that instructors use in classrooms, and one of the tools that have become popular alternative is the games. This report will help in understanding the concepts fast and memorize them from a lecture.  The game that is used is a simulation of an inventory method, the students’ forms teams who place orders for a particular item per month then the instructor will inform them on the issue of that month’s demand. For the items that are not sold, there are charges for holding costs plus another charge known as the shortage costs in case they use all the items. Then after that, they give orders for the coming month. To predict whether the learners understood anything, there were two methods that were applied. One was the before, and after questionnaire, another one involves playing the game two times. All these methods give room for benchmarking, which is followed by a calculation on how much the students had improved. When it comes to questionnaires, to assess the learning, the results were obtained and later on they were paired for comparison through a t-test calculation. There were few things that were calculated on the performance of the student which entails the alteration in the profits made by the students.

A lot of results are channeled towards the conclusion that the game taught the students. One of the things that increased is the basic inventory knowledge. The students got the understanding of the complexity of the stock issues plus the decision-making skills in general, in the end, the game was enjoyed by the students and thought it was a great experience. The evident proved that many students captured the many planning issues and could make use them in a wider range. Even though not all changes were statistically important, there were some improvements showing that the students developed a lot of interest in understanding the issues. The modern research is a proof of the general application of simulation games, even though it adds to the literature that was already in existence in the operations management plus the information systems games plus their assessments. Another thing is that this research entails two independent assessment of that particular game.

Simulation Game Analysis


For the simulation and games to be effective for learning, the designers for the instructions must approve the fundamental computational forms used to have the correct degree of fidelity to the conceptual forms. Approving the accuracy forms may not be enough to guarantee to learn, but it is a must. At times it may not be easy to approve the correctness of a given form, particularly the one which has stochastic results. The system that is examined in this research can help during the design plus the development of simulation as formative evaluation the same way the summative evaluation of the last simulation to offer a quantified confidence of computational form’s accuracy about its intended use. The reason for this study is to recommend and examine a system for gathering and interpreting users’ interaction data to offer evidence that simulation’s underlying computational form rightfully symbolizes the conceptual form of the true world phenomenon of desires.

Research Question

The procedure of developing and examining the current method is necessarily iterative. This is the first step taken towards validating the analysis of patterns in time by Frick as the best method for approving a simulation’s underlying computational form. The aim of this research is to give the exact details about the process for verifications of that kind. This makes the research question to be handled in this report to include the effectiveness of the method and the directions through which it might be advanced to have a subsequent examining plus the application. The research questions include, will the method suggested be effective in approving and advancing the accuracy of computational forms built for simulation and games? The next research question should be, what does the suggested method donate which can never be found through the other methods? Lastly, are there advancements that can be made to the suggested method?

These questions will be handled through the application of the methods to a specific case and analyze the outcomes. The other question will be handled by using the methods that are used in the model approvals and comparing the results of the methods. About the third question it will depend on the results and the analytical, interpretive plus the imaginative faculties.

Importance of the Study

The simulations and the games must be set in a way that it will be used for the purpose of education plus they must be rightfully signify what is to be learned. To offer a more concrete instance, the test case for the research is the Diffusion Simulation Game; this is used to educate the formulas and performances that are related to the change agency plus the diffusion of innovations. According to Everett the theory of the diffusion of innovations is the major conceptual model that students are required to experience and know though playing the DSG. If the outcomes of the activities from the DSG are not in line with the ones forecasted by the theory of DOI, then the students will create a misconception on the theory according to their experiences in gameplay (Girard, et al, 2013, 207-219).

The most critical element in the conceptual model is the accuracy through which a simulation modeler transforms the conceptual model into a computational model.  A lot of methods used to verify the accuracy is available and can be defined in this research. It is widely allowed that no method is enough and it suggests that various methods should be applied. This research suggests and examines a new formula that if proves to be effective will give simulation designers additional proof about the models being sufficiently correct with regards to main reasons (Ruben, et al, 1999, 380).

Literature Review

In the research, I began with a short history of the application of games and simulation for learning so as to give a few contexts for the purpose of understanding the importance of this research. I tested different proposed terms for the words like games and simulation and the way those terms come together to make the concept of a simulation game. I considered the formulas for characterizing the games; later I focused on the reasons why for applying simulations plus the various methods for categorizing the simulation. After elaborating the way these terms and concepts will later be applied in this research, I continued to narrow the attention on the things that are relevant to knowing the chosen method, for instance, the concept of fidelity plus the method of evaluating a simulation form’s fidelity. Since the chosen method consists the gathering and the interpretation of the data that is formed through the execution of a simulation model, I also debated on some past and the present approaches to collecting and creating of the data in question.

Foundation for the use of Games and Simulations

There number of research that involves the application of simulation and games or learning is increasing as compared to the periods of the early nineties. During the olden days, the transfer of knowledge and information was done through the use of books, articles plus the lectures by the knowledgeable educator. The scholars argued that the kind of form was used because of the scarcity of materials and instructors of good quality. Another is that this method shows that teaching is a requirement for learning. But it assumes the social, involvement plus the peer-based trait of getting education away from the classroom. Since educators gained a lot of experienced founded on the approaches to directions, for instance, the case studies, role playing, simulations, games plus any other set exercises the olden, didactic form slowly disappeared to prominence to a student center way triggering the active and experiential learning. The approach entails a lot of complex and different approaches to learning by giving room for the bigger interactivity, association plus peer learning.  According to scholars, the most significant thing in learning is to change knowledge into a trait which needs reinforcement, the use repetition, and continuous training in different setting plus the contexts (Ke, 2009,29) .

There are two major reasons for applying the instructional games s that games have the ability to engage and motivate plus their ability to promote learning through action. There are many reasons why instructors are advised to have an interest in applying games when giving out instructions; they include the change to a learner-centered form plus the intensity of engaging in games. The keeping of facts in mind plus the formulas that are easily calculated on a standardized test has resulted in the presentation of abstract, knowledge that is separated from the reason and the instrumentality. The negative thing about games is that they require players constantly to apply what had been learned to offer solutions to the situated problems. The outcomes show that the type of experiential learning that exists in games increases the students’ skills in solving problems plus making the wisest decisions. The games can be used as the immersive learning surrounding which is appropriate for experiential learning and can motivate exploration on the lines of the directed discovery. So this works in a way that for the learners to concentrate on the books, they learn from the experience (Girard, et al, 2013, 207-219).

Young learners have also proved that learning acquires using games in the content fields with specific stated aims, for instance, math and skills in the language. The reason behind this is that active learning needed in games enables integration of knowledge with existing cognitive structures. There are a lot of benefits that games have when it comes to education. They include the increase in perseverance, increase in confidence plus self-esteem among the students. Others include the ability to create a visual, control and investigate theories in academic, social, plus the computer literacy skills. The skill can be applied in other fields as well, for instance in health sciences simulations allows the learners to diagnose and control virtual patients’ problems. In business education, teams control virtual companies. The common thing in these fields is that simulations are applied to discover the learners’ problem-solving skills and to and to close the gap that exists between the classroom and the actual world practices. A lot of attributes of games can also be the attributes of great instructional design. In most occasions, games entail giving solutions to problems, giving instant replies and the ability to adjust to the optimal level of a problem. Several learning principles are found in good games; they include manipulation plus control by the learner, scaffolding plus explanation of well-arranged problems, optimal challenges, skills as planned plus the circle of expertise, the information as required and minding about the time, systems thinking plus learning through action (Zyda, 2005, 23).

A lot of studies of the advantages of playing games to acquire knowledge have boosted the motivational or social aspects instead of the acquisition of knowledge. The intrinsic motivations in most cases are considered to be a prerequisite for learning. A learner who is motivated can be described as one who is enthusiastic, engaged, focused and does not give up. Several factors make an activity to be intrinsically motivating; they include challenge, curiosity, fantasy, plus control. They are the common elements of games. Input is a mixture of instructional content plus characteristics of games. These features encourage a game cycle of user judgments, user behavior plus the system response used in an iterative loop and if it becomes successful, the outcome in increased the engagement, effort with a greater persistent, and bigger chances of achieving the required learning results (ARAI, 2005, 300).

Simulations offer advanced safety, unlike environment and circumstances that might sometimes be dangerous to be applied in the real world. The most common simulator is the flight simulator. Simulation sometimes can provide experiences that are not yet mature to be applied in reality, for instance being miniaturized and travel in the body of human the same way it is shown in the Walt Disney World.  The time frame is also manipulated by simulation this is done to reduce the time frame of activity, for instance, something which could take hours or days is done in a minute (Ruben, et al, 1999, 380).

Simulation are cost effective specifically when there are a lot of people who need to be taught. Another advantage that this design has over the media and methodology is that it can boost engagement and motivation by needing active instead of passive learning, which can be enhanced by joining elements of games like fantasy, challenge, and aims. There are proofs that a well-planned simulation can increase the efficiency of learning and advance both near transfers who are sometimes referred to as similar circumstances plus the far transfer which are different circumstances. Lastly, simulations are not rigid approaches to learning. It can be applied in different steps of instructions, plus the assessment. They can also be designed to assist in handling teaching and learning philosophy.

The type of game or simulation choosing should be founded a clear analysis of the learning conditions and analysis of the tradeoffs should be among the alternative approaches. Research conducted in Meta-analysis to compare the games instructional effectiveness using the olden classroom instruction of more than twenty-eight years, only sixty-eight empirical studies was discovered.  Out of those discovered, thirty-eight found a difference in effectiveness; twenty-seven realized that the games were more effective and only three discovered that the classroom was more effective.  However, the scholars discovered that there was a lack of rigor in the study design plus the lack of random sampling, failure to show reliability plus the validity and another thing was the failure to manage the confounding variables. There is also a weak support for games over the approaches that was discovered in a quantitative meta-analysis of the simulation gaming. Among the studies only five discovered the gaming to be more effective for instant recall of knowledge, only two researches discovered that the simulation gaming has effect in improving knowledge. Despite this, there are critics about this methodology claiming that among the twenty, six did not compare the instructional approaches (Ruben, et al, 1999, 380).

This literature review about the games and simulations for learning has discovered that this method had been used for a long time; it was applied several centuries ago. Apart from that, the application of games and simulation in the context of education is predicted to increase in the future, as it is spearheaded by the growing body of research. The desire to increase the efforts to create games explicitly for the purpose of learning plus a bigger desire among the mainstream of instructors to embrace them. It is, therefore, appropriate that the creators of games and simulations for learning to have reliable tools and methods to confirm that their designs result in the needed educational goals. This stock game is a simulation of ordering goods from a retailer, and the students are to decide on how, when and the number of the goods that are required the decision is to take the shortest time possible. To play the game, the students are to be divided into groups that consist of three to six members with every group provided with instructions to be followed plus some illustrations to be followed. There are questionnaires developed to clarify if the students understood the purpose of stock management, the question is to test if the learners understood the concepts of remaining and running out of stock. To do away with biases, there was a need to do a second evaluation (WHITE, 1983, 232).


The questionnaires that were used during this research showed that the students had a good understanding of the stock management issues after playing the game. The first three questions tested on whether the students had improved; if they gave accurate answers after the game the question were to be assumed as the qualitative data, analyzing the proportion correct after the game and before. After they had scored it was necessary to perform it using the quantitative method in matched pair’s option. Another thing is that through the use of the matched pair option it gives a great comparison among the learners. The following charts show the outcomes of the first three questions with their p- values found on the matched pairs test.

Question Potential points (27 students) Score before Score after p-value (one-tail Proportion correct before Proportion correct after  
1 54 10 20 0.02 19% 37%  
2 27 22 17 1.0 82% 63%  
3 135 77 103 0.1 57% 76%  


In the first place the students had not been trained on anything about stock management before the questionnaires this led to the lower scores that is before the game. The questionnaire in part one and two proves that there had been an improvement after the game. Despite the fact that the questionnaire two does not show any proof that there was an improvement since there was a drop in performance when the students were tackling this question.

Question 4 Number before Number after
Very easy 0 0
Easy 0 0
Moderate 8 5
Difficult 18 14
Very difficult 1 8
p-value   0.010



The questions four and five applied ranked data. The fourth question was created to study how the students find the difficulty in making the decisions on matters of the stock.kit would test the students’ ability to perceive on the complexity of decision connected to the inventory. It was discovered that this might show that before and after knowing the business decisions broadly sometimes the learners might underestimate the weight of action on reality. After matching the pairs of the data again, the students will discover that the decision making will be more difficult after the game. The test of the sign is made easy through the coding the responses from one to five.

Discussion and Conclusion

Every outcome apart from one showed that the students learned from the game. The major knowledge about stock was tested in the first three questions on the questionnaire that was given. Two of them showed some improvement. The three questions might not show a greater significant than the other outcomes as the others tested on a wider conceptual stage. The fourth issue revealed that the learners gained an appreciation for the complexity of the issues plus the skill of decision making.  The fifth plus the comments from the parties that took part showed that the students enjoyed the game and found it a pleasant learning experience. In short, this study has confirmed the previous research that games are effective ways of learning. In the two cases studied it shows that this method should be embraced. Another about this research is that it raises the question of how to assess learning from a different pedagogical technique. For instance, the previous studies reported that the learners who played the game did better on the test; the only critic about this is that it is not assured whether these students performed better because they had played the game before or because they had just studied harder than the other students in their class. This proves that the best way to confirm if the game has a positive effect is to use the method of before and after questionnaires or another way to test is through playing the game twice in class this would ensure that there is no learning that took place outside the classroom. The problem is that both the two experimental methods consume a lot of time to be applied in one class session.

The research shows that the learners are most likely to keep the learning materials that learned from the game in their minds than the way they would have remembered typically from the lecturer, this might be the biggest reason as to why games should be used in the classrooms. Another thing is that a lot of students develop interests on the courses that involve games this increase their chances of being attentive to learn even during the class sessions. When games are used in class session the number of materials will be reduced. Considering the stock game, it meets all the objectives, and it helps the students in gaining the knowledge. In conclusion, simulation games offer real learning experiences this is because students make decisions, see the outcomes the decisions they have made. The findings are based on personal decisions plus the union of the other decisions. A lot of simulations includes uncertainty hence they are essential tools to acquaint the learners with the aspect to be used in decision making.

Reference list

Arai, K., Deguchi, H. & Matsui, H. (2005). Agent-based modeling meets gaming simulation. Tokyo, Springer.

Girard, C., Ecalle, J. and Magnan, A., 2013. Serious games as new educational tools: how effective are they? A meta‐analysis of recent studies. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 29(3), pp.207-219.

Ke, F., 2009. A qualitative meta-analysis of computer games as learning tools. Handbook of research on effective electronic gaming in education, 1, pp.1-32.

Randel, J.M., Morris, B.A., Wetzel, C.D. and Whitehill, B.V., 1992. The effectiveness of games for educational purposes: A review of recent research. Simulation & gaming, 23(3), pp.261-276.

Ruben, B.D., 1999. Simulations, games, and experience-based learning: The quest for a new paradigm for teaching and learning. Simulation & Gaming, 30(4), pp.498-505.

WHITE, D. M. (1983). Use and selection of simulation games for instruction: an analysis of programs in military history.

Zyda, M., 2005. From visual simulation to virtual reality to games. Computer, 38(9), pp.25-32.