University of the West of Scotland


Continuing/Higher Education in Research Methods Using Games (CHERMUG)

Principal investigators : Dr Liz Boyle, Professor Thomas M Connolly, Dr Ewan MacArthur, Dr Tom Hainey

Funding Body : EU LLP, KA3

Value : €531,354

Project Partners :

This aims to develop a game to support students as they develop an understanding of research methods and statistics. The inductive and hypothetico-deductive reasoning that underlie research methodology require logical reasoning and critical thinking skills that are core competences in developing a more sophisticated understanding of the world. These higher level thinking skills provide the fundamental skills base required to tackle the ill-defined problems that we face in the 21st century. The project fits very well with the EU 2020 Strategy "New Skills for New Jobs" and the General Priorities of LLP, which aims to promote the acquisition of key competences throughout the education and training system. More specifically using games to teach methods and statistics fits with the acquisition of:

  • Mathematical competence and basic competences in science and technology
  • Digital competence
  • Learning to learn.

More specifically, the objectives of the project are to develop:

Stakeholder and user requirements analysis:

  • To establish the attitudes of HE nursing students and nurses undergoing vocational training towards the use of games as a component of a blended learning approach to teaching methods and statistics to nurses.
  • To undertake a systematic review of the literature around the use of computer games for learning in the education sectors associated with this project.

Cognitive task analysis:

  • To identify the component cognitive skills, knowledge and competences required in developing a comprehensive and usable understanding of research methodology.

Design and implementation:

  • To develop a generic game platform for supporting the teaching of research methods and statistics. This would include a mechanism for presenting methods and statistics content in HE/FE and vocational training, a game kernel, content handlers and builders. The game will be developed to be multi-lingual to support teaching in different European languages.


  • To perform a large-scale pilot of the game with nursing and social science students and their lecturers across many European countries.

Teacher training:

  • To provide training for the teachers who will use the game. Introducing an educational game requires training for the teachers who will use the game.
  • To establish an online Community of Practice with teachers, practitioner and other stakeholder, to liaise with in developing the game and in piloting the game via contacts from the consortium members.
  • To develop Best Practice Case Studies to provide guidance to teachers about how to best use the game in their teaching.

Evaluation and quality assurance:

  • To evaluate the effectiveness of the game in supporting nursing students in learning research methods and statistics.

Exploitation and commercialisation:

  • To assess the commercial value of such a game.

Project Website: