Engaging Students in Basic Cybersecurity Concepts Using Digital Game-Based Learning: Computer Games as Virtual Learning Environments

  • Stylianos Karagiannis
  • Emmanouil MagkosEmail author
Part of the Learning and Analytics in Intelligent Systems book series (LAIS, volume 14)


Teaching various topics using gamification elements or Game-Based Learning (GBL) methods is a top trend nowadays. Gamification has shown great results towards this direction, however, the usage of GBL methods has not been sufficiently studied for the effectiveness of the learning process. This study examines how instructional design could be applied and how computer games could be a learning environment for acquiring the basic skills and experience in fundamental cybersecurity topics. Towards this direction, this research aspires to discover how specific computer games, designed as simulations, could be converted into virtual learning environments and enhance the learning process, by increasing the levels of motivation and engagement of undergraduate students in the topics of cybersecurity. Computer games are appropriate for creating effective virtual learning environments specific to cybersecurity, providing positive learning outcomes. More specifically, in this study a commercial computer game is evaluated for the effectiveness of using GBL to the learning process. The result of this approach is a learning experience, featuring positive outcomes in terms of engagement and distinct impact in terms of perceived learning. For this study, the ARCS motivation model was used, for evaluating motivation levels and for investigating potential attributes which are related to perceived learning, knowledge and skill acquisition.


Game based learning Gamification Cybersecurity Instructional design Cybersecurity training 


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of InformaticsIonian UniversityCorfuGreece

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