Two major obstacles to using problem-based learning methods with writing in elementary school classrooms are the time it takes to design the learning environment and the time required for students to interact at their own pace with ill-structured problems used to spur student writing. This study examined whether game elements could be used along with Problem Based Learning (PBL) in a digital learning environment to improve student writing. Results from this study included statistically significant decreases in teacher time spent answering procedural and directional questions, increased voluntary student writing, and improved standardized achievement scores on writing tasks. (Keywords: achievement, elementary, MUVE, game,writing.)

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