Drawing the big picture of games in education: A topic modeling-based review of past 55 years

Ekin, Cansu Çiğdem
Polat, Elif
Hopcan, Sinan
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Computers and Education
The literature of games in education has a rich and multidisciplinary content. Due to the large number of studies in the field, it is not easy to analyze all relevant studies. There are few studies exploring the big picture of research trends in the field. For this reason, the purpose of this study is to examine longitudinal trends of game-based research in education using text mining techniques. 4980 publications were retrieved as an experimental dataset indexed by the SCOPUS database in the period 1968 to mid-2021. The results include descriptive statistics of game-based research, trends of the research topics, and trends in the frequency of each topic over time. They show that the number of studies focusing on the use of games in education has increased, particularly since the 2000s when Internet use accelerated and became widespread. Approximately 70% of all the studies were conducted in the last 10 years. One third of the studies is related to the main topic of game-based learning. It is significant that in the last three decades the topic of serious games has been among the top three trends. Considering usage acceleration of the topics, the highest values belong to game-based learning, serious games and student science games, in that order. The findings of this study are expected to guide the field by providing a better understanding of the trends of games in education and offer a direction for future research.
Published by Computers and Education, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2022.104700, Cansu C. Ekin, Elif Polat, Atilim University, Faculty of Engineering, Computer Engineering, Kizilcasar Mah, Ankara, Incek, 06830, Turkey, Sinan Hopcan, Istanbul University - Cerrahpasa, Hasan Ali Yucel Education Faculty, Computer Education and Instructional Technology, 34452, Istanbul, Turkey.
Serious Games, Game-based Learning, Text Mining, Topic Modeling, Latent Dirichlet Allocation, Games in Education