Apparel eduLARP for computer-aided design: Design, implementation, and evaluation of a live-action roleplay for undergraduate students within an apparel program

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Hixson, Sarah West
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Eike, Rachel J
Reddy-Best, Kelly
Zhang, Ling
Wiley, Cyndi
Emery, Alyssa
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Apparel, Events and Hospitality Management
This research explores the potential of eduLARP, a form of game-based learning, in apparel and textiles curriculum to propose an inclusive and accessible skill development opportunity for undergraduate students. An eduLARP was designed, documented, and implemented to evaluate its effectiveness as an alternative option to less accessible experiential learning opportunities, like study tours and internships. EduLARP is a form of immersive educational roleplay experience that offers industry-applied skills and workplace experiences in a more financially feasible and inclusive format. The objectives of this mixed-methods study were to develop, implement, and evaluate an apparel eduLARP model grounded in Self-Determination Theory (SDT). The software skills under investigation were related to technical sketch design within a university-level sophomore computer-based methods for apparel course. The first manuscript in the research included a qualitative approach where the documented design of the eduLARP using a design thinking toolkit was developed. The second manuscript in the research was a mixed-methods, quasi-experimental study design where students completed a group activity through traditional instruction, as a control group, and a separate group of students completed the activity through eduLARP, as an intervention group. The groups completed pre and posttests as well as 3 journals across the activity over 3 class sessions. The pre and posttests included items on student psychological needs fulfillment, intrinsic motivation to learn, and questions derived from the Adobe Certified Professional exam for Adobe Illustrator. The posttest included a consensual assessment technique to quantitatively evaluate the quality (creative and technical detail) of their technical sketches. This research provided evidence that eduLARP successfully maintained or increased fulfilment of students' needs while facilitating greater skill development by supporting psychological needs of autonomy, competence, and relatedness. This research contributes to instructional design and student-centered approaches in apparel and texitles education. By incorporating game-based learning and following a SDT framework, educators can provide accessible, immersive, and impactful skill development experiences while promoting motivation and inclusivity. This study expands the pedagogy of apparel education and provides an approach that can enhance the educational experience for apparel and textile students.
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