Exploring Digital Careers, Stereotypes and Diversity with Young People through Game Design and Implementation

Opeyemi Dele-Ajayi, Itoro Emembolu, Matthew Peers, Joe Shimwell, Becky Strachan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)
26 Downloads (Pure)


A key issue for the digital sector is how to attract more young people, particularly those from under-represented groups, to study computer science and digital technologies at higher education and beyond. The main aim of this study was to evaluate if a gaming environment can be used to generate interest and engagement among young people. Two further aims were to see if this approach could also be used to create a greater awareness of professional career roles in the sector and to explore diversity and stereotypes. Using an action research approach, a workshop was designed for use with young people where they were asked to design and develop a game. Embedded within this were activities to introduce career roles and challenge stereotypes, with a specific focus on gender and ethnicity. The results show that young people have a limited understanding of the roles involved in the game industry. Male children created male game characters while female children created both male and female characters for their games. Females aspired to jobs in the health sciences while males aspired to a wider range of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) careers. The workshop is currently being extended and developed to create a more in-depth intervention, building on the results from the research to date.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2018 IEEE Global Engineering Education Conference (EDUCON)
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-5386-2957-4
ISBN (Print)978-1-5386-2958-1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2018
EventIEEE Global Engineering Education Conference 2018 - University of La Laguna, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain
Duration: 18 Apr 201820 Apr 2018


ConferenceIEEE Global Engineering Education Conference 2018
Abbreviated titleEDUCON2018
CitySanta Cruz de Tenerife
Internet address


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