The relationship between engagement and knowledge attainment in a computer-based training game and job performance of travel agents

Lizette Cruzie Calvo (SEHD Leadership and Professional Studies, School of Education and Human Development, Florida International University, Miami, Florida, USA)
Thomas Reio (SEHD Leadership and Professional Studies, School of Education and Human Development, Florida International University, Miami, Florida, USA)

Journal of Management Development

ISSN: 0262-1711

Publication date: 11 June 2018

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the relation between learning engagement (time spent in playing the game) and knowledge attainment (points earned answering questions) and sales performance on the job. Knowledge attainment was also examined as a mediator of the engagement-performance relation.

Design/methodology/approach

In this nonexperimental study, travel agent engagement, knowledge, and sales performance data were collected from 309 cruise industry participants. A combination of MANOVA, correlation and regression analyses were used to examine these relations.

Findings

Moderate to strong positive and statistically significant relations were found between learning engagement and knowledge attainment, and learning engagement and sales performance. Additional analysis revealed that knowledge attainment mediated the link between learning engagement and sales performance.

Research limitations/implications

Because the study was not designed to examine causal relations among the research variables, its generalizability was limited. Still, moderate to strong relations were found between learning engagement and knowledge attainment, and knowledge attainment and sales performance. Further, while engagement had a direct effect on sales performance, it also had an indirect effect through the knowledge attainment variable. The findings provide preliminary support for further research into how serious computer games motivate learner and engagement and learning best and how each is linked to important organizational outcomes like performance.

Originality/value

Serious computer games are becoming an increasingly useful means for promoting employee learning, development, and performance. This research offers new evidence that computer serious games can enhance learning and performance.

Keywords

Citation

Calvo, L. and Reio, T. (2018), "The relationship between engagement and knowledge attainment in a computer-based training game and job performance of travel agents", Journal of Management Development, Vol. 37 No. 5, pp. 374-384. https://doi.org/10.1108/JMD-03-2017-0063

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Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited

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