The pedagogical benefit of active learning environments such as simulations within University teaching is widely recognized and there is a burgeoning literature on their impact (Raymond & Usherwood, 2013; Schnurr, De Santo, & Green, 2014). Much of the empirical evidence to date has mobilized quantitative data drawn, for example, from Likert scale questionnaire responses. There remains an absence of qualitative studies that explore the in-depth views of participants involved in simulation activities and this chapter goes some way to filling that void. This chapter uses an expanded dataset comprising responses to open-ended questions gathered via a pre- and post-simulation questionnaire completed by participants at five secondary school-based EU simulations undertaken in 2017 and 2018 on the topic of the Brexit negotiations over the freedom of movement. It builds on earlier work which demonstrated that simulations can be an effective University outreach and recruitment tool to widen participation in and raise aspirations toward entering higher education (Heard-Lauréote, Bortun, & Kreuschitz, 2019) by analyzing the experience of approximately 100 secondary school participants who undertook the simulations. By exploring the educational value of EU simulations as perceived by participants, this chapter provides a snapshot of the pedagogical impact of this type of activity to the benefit of those devising such activities for delivery in the future.
Heard-Lauréote, K. and Field, M. (2021), "Using Simulations to Teach Within UK Higher Education: An Analysis of Student Perceptions of European Studies-based Simulations’ Pedagogical and Other Benefits", Visvizi, A., Field, M. and Pachocka, M. (Ed.) Teaching the EU: Fostering Knowledge and Understanding in the Brexit Age (Emerald Studies in Higher Education, Innovation and Technology), Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 69-84. https://doi.org/10.1108/978-1-80043-274-120211005
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