Measuring students’ Time Perspective and Time on Task in GBL activities

Mireia Usart, Margarida Romero, Elena Barberà


Computer-based learning in general and Game Based Learning (GBL) in particular are becoming widely used in lifelong learning institutions and business schools. However, instructional and research design of these environments is still in a process of adaptation, due to the novelty of the GBL methodology and the initial stage of research studies in the field. One of the key factors in understanding these learning contexts is the time factor, defined both as an objective dimension (Time-on-Task; ToT) and as a subjective, psychological variable (Time Perspective; TP).

The purpose of this paper is to discuss how to measure these two temporal variables in computer-based learning activities. In particular, we will raise the question of which techniques and methodologies are being used to measure these temporal variables in computer-based learning and GBL, and we will further discuss these methodologies in order to propose an suitable methodology that could be useful for researchers. For this purpose, an exhaustive literature review on time measurement in the learning sciences was conducted. The outcomes of the study aim to draw a usable methodology for measuring both TP and ToT in computer-based educational contexts. Results of this study could be of interest for researchers and practitioners in the field of computer-based learning when designing and implementing time measures in the learning process.


Time Perspective, Time-on-Task, Computer-based Learning, Game Based Learning, Serious Games

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