Taxonomy of a gamified lesson path for STEM education: The beaconing approach

Aikaterini Bourazeri, Sylvester Arnab, Olivier Heidmann, Antonio Coelho, Luca Morini

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceedingpeer-review

    8 Citations (Scopus)


    21st Century learning focuses on different skills and expertise that learners should develop for a successful life and career, and these are usually organised into four main categories: ways of thinking (e.g. creativity, innovation, critical thinking, problem-solving); ways of working (e.g.communication and collaboration); tools for working (e.g. digital literacy) and living in the world (e.g. citizenship, social responsibility, awareness). Learning should be reshaped to better match these requirements and prepare learners for open societies where learning will be lifelong and based on critical-thinking, cultural awareness, flexibility and adaption to changes. This paper introduces a new approach developed under the scope of the Beaconing project, which aims to contextualise the teaching and learning process, connecting it with problem-based mechanics within STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). The aim is to provide the missing connection between STEM subjects and real-world interactions and applications, and it is developed with inputs from teachers, researchers, educational experts and industry leaders. The pedagogical foundation is based on problem-based learning, in which active learning is in the centre and learners have to work with different tools and resources in order to solve problems (quests). Teachers facilitate, assess and author pervasive and gamified learning activities (missions). And these quests are gamified in order to provide non-linear game plots. This paper discusses the taxonomy for the Beaconing lesson path, which includes specific categories such as STEM competencies, learning objectives, pedagogical resources, rewards, narratives, game plots, location-based activities and game parameters. The lesson paths developed with the stakeholders will be populated with gamified learning activities such as mini-games, location-based mini-games, location-based activities and physical activities. The lesson paths will scaffold learners through self-directed and independent study, extending the learning experience beyond the classroom settings and complementing existing methods of teaching. The gamified lesson path taxonomy provides the backbone to the Beaconing platform and the associated components. This approach is adoptable and adaptable to various learning objectives.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the 11th European Conference on Games Based Learning, ECGBL 2017
    PublisherAcademic Conferences and Publishing International Limited
    Number of pages9
    ISBN (Electronic)9781911218562
    Publication statusPublished - 2017
    Event11th European Conference on Games Based Learning - Graz, Austria
    Duration: 5 Oct 20176 Oct 2017
    Conference number: 11


    Conference11th European Conference on Games Based Learning
    Abbreviated titleECGBL 2017


    • Gamified learning activities
    • Gamified lesson path
    • Problem-based learning
    • STEM education

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Software
    • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
    • Computer Networks and Communications
    • Artificial Intelligence
    • Human-Computer Interaction
    • Control and Systems Engineering
    • Education


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