Using agile games to invigorate agile and lean software development learning in classrooms

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A wide variety of professional certifications, trainings and dedicated academic courses are attempting to meet the ever-growing demand for software professionals competent in the knowledge and use of agile and lean software methods and practices. Agile games, embodying experiential learning, are popular in industrial contexts and are increasingly being trialed in academic settings as a feasible alternative or a complement to traditional instructional learning approaches. Most games reported, however, focus exclusively on the Scrum method and practices. This study reports on the use of four agile games for learning fundamental agile and lean concepts such as iterative and incremental delivery, collaborative estimation, pair programming and work-in-progress limits. Based on classroom observations and survey-based quantitative and qualitative data, we found that: agile games are a useful supplement for effective learning, can easily invigorate learner engagement and promote team building. Effective facilitation and debriefing sessions are imperative to the success of agile games in classrooms. Educators can easily introduce agile games by selecting from a variety of accessible online resources based on their ability to deliver desired learning outcomes and graduate attributes to invigorate learning about agile and lean software development.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAgile and Lean Concepts for Teaching and Learning
Subtitle of host publicationBringing Methodologies from Industry to the Classroom
EditorsDavid Parsons, Kathryn MacCallum
Place of PublicationSingapore Singapore
Number of pages24
ISBN (Electronic)9789811327513
ISBN (Print)9789811327506
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Agile software development
  • Games
  • Engagement
  • Learning
  • Teaching
  • Classroom

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