Smart Objects and Technologies for Social Good. Third International Conference, GOODTECHS 2017, Pisa, Italy, November 29-30, 2017, Proceedings

Research Article

How to Increase Boys’ Engagement in Reading Mandatory Poems in the Gymnasium: Homer’s “The Odyssey” as Transmedia Storytelling with the Cyclopeia Narrative as a Computer Game

  • @INPROCEEDINGS{10.1007/978-3-319-76111-4_22,
        author={Ademir Pasalic and Nikolaj Andersen and Christopher Carlsen and Emil Karlsson and Markus Berthold and Thomas Bj\`{u}rner},
        title={How to Increase Boys’ Engagement in Reading Mandatory Poems in the Gymnasium: Homer’s “The Odyssey” as Transmedia Storytelling with the Cyclopeia Narrative as a Computer Game},
        proceedings={Smart Objects and Technologies for Social Good. Third International Conference, GOODTECHS 2017, Pisa, Italy, November 29-30, 2017, Proceedings},
        proceedings_a={GOODTECHS},
        year={2018},
        month={3},
        keywords={Game-based learning Transmedia Serious games},
        doi={10.1007/978-3-319-76111-4_22}
    }
    
  • Ademir Pasalic
    Nikolaj Andersen
    Christopher Carlsen
    Emil Karlsson
    Markus Berthold
    Thomas Bjørner
    Year: 2018
    How to Increase Boys’ Engagement in Reading Mandatory Poems in the Gymnasium: Homer’s “The Odyssey” as Transmedia Storytelling with the Cyclopeia Narrative as a Computer Game
    GOODTECHS
    Springer
    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-76111-4_22
Ademir Pasalic1, Nikolaj Andersen1, Christopher Carlsen1, Emil Karlsson1, Markus Berthold1, Thomas Bjørner1,*
  • 1: Aalborg University, Department of Architecture, Design and Media Technology
*Contact email: tbj@create.aau.dk

Abstract

This paper outlines how a computer game can be used within transmedia storytelling to engage boys in the Danish gymnasium to read the epic poem “The Odyssey” by Homer. The study is based on a formative evaluation with questionnaires, observations, data logging, and interviews. Interviews with classical civilization teachers were further conducted, both in the initial design stage and after participant tests. Through all stages of the transmedia storytelling, it was revealed that curiosity was the main reason behind the engagement. The aesthetics worked out well in the game, and the story was presented in a format that the boys could comprehend and had the potential to increase their engagement in reading the poem. Different elements were implemented in the program code to maintain match in game flow for the individual player. However, this study can also emphasize how well-designed game mechanics are of ultimate importance, as well as involving teachers throughout all stages in the iterative process, as they are key figures for real implementation and acceptance.