Publication Date


Date of Final Oral Examination (Defense)


Type of Culminating Activity


Degree Title

Doctor of Education in Educational Technology


Educational Technology

Major Advisor

Youngkyun Baek, Ph.D.


Yu-Hui Ching, Ph.D.


Dazhi Yang, Ph.D.


High school science classes can be difficult for students to be successful in because of the content-specific vocabulary and the expectation of prior knowledge in the subject area that teachers have of their students. The use of digital games in the classroom can provide teachers with the tools to help students scaffold their learning and better grasp the vocabulary necessary to be successful in science class. The purpose of this mixed methods study was to focus teachers’ and students’ perceptions of digital games in the high school science classroom on vocabulary development, scaffolding learning by activating prior knowledge, and self-efficacy. Findings suggest that teachers and students believed that using digital games positively impacted the development of vocabulary knowledge and helped scaffolding learning. Some students found that their levels of self-efficacy were positively impacted by using digital games in their science classes. Teachers can use these findings to make informed decisions about how to integrate digital games into their science curriculum.