Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate if the use of “serious games” with students can improve their knowledge acquisition and their academic performance. Design/methodology/approach – The research is an exploratory investigation resorting to the use of a serious game to evaluate the evolution of the students’ competencies in project management, through questionnaires processed using a structural “learning model.” Findings – This research shows indeed that the use of “serious games” improves the knowledge acquisition and management competencies of the students with the evidencing of significant factors contributing to this improvement. Practical implications – The findings of this research show that serious games can be an effective tool to be used in teaching students particularly as traditional methods are less and less accepted by today's students. Originality/value – Although the use of games is not something new in education, it is still limited in teaching practices in higher education. This experiment can help lecturers and trainers to resort to them in their pedagogy and to conceive them according to variables that can enhance their effectiveness.
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