Vol. 15 No. 2 (2024): (Issue in progress)
Research Article

Education for sustainable mobility in Slovenia: Using gamification to influence the travel habits of children

Boštjan Rogelj
University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Arts, Department of Geography, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Bio
Tatjana Resnik Planinc
University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Arts, Department of Geography, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Blaž Repe
University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Arts, Department of Geography, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Mojca Ilc Klun
University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Arts, Department of Geography, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Distribution of the school districts participating in the project and students’ average travel distance to school

Published 2024-04-21

Keywords

  • sustainable development,
  • sustainable mobility,
  • travel habits,
  • primary school students,
  • gamification,
  • education
  • ...More
    Less

How to Cite

Rogelj, Boštjan, Tatjana Resnik Planinc, Blaž Repe, and Mojca Ilc Klun. 2024. “Education for Sustainable Mobility in Slovenia: Using Gamification to Influence the Travel Habits of Children”. European Journal of Geography 15 (2):81-93. https://doi.org/10.48088/ejg.b.rog.15.2.081.093.
Received 2024-02-07
Accepted 2024-04-21
Published 2024-04-21

Abstract

The ever-increasing mobility of modern society has a number of negative effects on space, the environment, health and quality of life. It is therefore crucial to raise awareness of the importance of sustainable mobility, part of which is effective and comprehensive education of children. The article presents some key findings of the Sustainable Mobility in Preschools and Primary Schools project, carried out in the period 2019–2021. We investigated whether gamified activities can change students' travel habits and whether the change in travel habits is influenced by their age. The study is based on the survey data from 28,043 primary school students (grades 1–9) across 220 schools (77.7% in rural, 22.3% in urban settle-ments). Employing paired-samples t-tests and one-way analysis of variance, the study evaluated the impact of gamified activities on travel habits. The results show that children can significantly change their travelling habits with the help of gamification. Although the greatest change in travel habits occurred during the implementation of the activity, the results suggest that more lasting effects can also be achieved.  Furthermore, younger participants displayed greater responsiveness to the gamified interventions compared to their older counterparts. This research enhances the corpus of knowledge pertaining to educational strategies for sustainable mobility by providing insights from one of the largest projects to investigate the influence of gamified activities on children's commuting habits.

Highlights:

  • More than 28,000 primary school students from 220 schools participated in the research.
  • Gamification can be used for promotion of sustainable mobility among students.
  • During the gamified activity, the share of sustainable journeys increased by 20,87 percentage points.
  • Success of gamified activities depends on the age of students.
  • Younger children were the most receptive to the gamified activities.

Downloads

Download data is not yet available.

References

  1. Abou-Zeid, M., Fujii, S. (2015). Travel satisfaction effects of changes in public transport usage. Transportation, 43, 301–314. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11116-015-9576-3
  2. Apostol, S., Zaharescu, L., & Alexe, I. (2013). Gamification of learning and educational games. The international scientific conference on e-learning and software for education, 2. 67–72. https://www.proquest.com/openview/d381e1e25ae57d8b75fd1a8d8b1588fe/1?pq-origsite=gscholar&cbl=1876338
  3. Arnold, B. J. (2014). Gamification in education. Proceedings of the American Society of Business and Behavioral Sciences, 21(1), 32–39.
  4. AST, 2024. https://www.brisbane.qld.gov.au/traffic-and-transport/public-transport/school-transport/active-school-travel-program/active-school-travel-schools-and-results
  5. Bartzokas-Tsiompras, A., & Photis, Y. N. (2020). Does neighborhood walkability affect ethnic diversity in Berlin? Insights from a spatial modelling approach. European Journal of Geography, 11(1), 163–187. https://doi.org/10.48088/ejg.a.bar.11.1.163.187
  6. Bartzokas-Tsiompras, A. & Bakogiannis, E. (2023). Quantifying and visualizing the 15-Minute walkable city concept across Europe: a multicriteria approach. Journal of Maps, 19(1). https://doi.org/10.1080/17445647.2022.2141143
  7. Baur, A. & Haase, H. (2015). The influence of active participation and organisation in environmental protection activities on the environmental behaviour of pupils: study of a teaching technique. Environmental Education Research, 21(1), 92–105. https://doi.org/10.1080/13504622.2013.843645
  8. Ben-Elia, E., Ettema, D. (2011). Changing commuters' behavior using rewards: a study of rush hour avoidance. Transportation Research Part F: Travel Psychology and Behaviour, 14(5), 354–368. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.trf.2011.04.003
  9. Biancardi, A., Colasante, A., & D’Adamo, I. (2023). Sustainable education and youth confidence as pillars of future civil society. Scientific Reports volume, 13, Article 955. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-023-28143-9
  10. Brkić-Vejmelka, J., Pejdo, A., & Segarić, N. (2022). Sustainable Development from the Perspective of Geography Education. European Journal of Geography 9(1), 121–132. https://eurogeojournal.eu/index.php/egj/article/view/103
  11. Brůhová Foltýnová, H., Vejchodská, E., Rybová, K., & Květoň, V. (2020). Sustainable urban mobility: One definition, different stakeholders’ opin-ions. Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment, 87, 102465. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.trd.2020.102465
  12. Bruun, E., & Givoni, M. (2015). Sustainable mobility: Six research routes to steer transport policy. Nature, 523, 29–31. https://doi.org/10.1038/523029a
  13. Cayolla, R., Escadas, M., McCullough, B. P., Biscaia, R., Cabilhas, A., & Santos, T. (2023). Does pro-environmental attitude predicts pro-environmental behavior? Comparing sustainability connection in emotional and cognitive environments among football fans and university students. Helyon 9(11). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.heliyon.2023.e21758
  14. Coombes, E., Jones, A. (2016). Gamification of active travel to school: A pilot evaluation of the Beat the Street physical activity intervention. Elsevier, Health & Place, 39, 62–69. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.healthplace.2016.03.001
  15. Dėdelė, A. & Miškinytė, A. (2021). Promoting Sustainable Mobility: A Perspective from Car and Public Transport Users. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 18(9), Article 4715. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18094715
  16. Deterding, S., Khaled, R., Nacke, L. E., Dixon, D. (2011). Gamification: Toward a Definition. http://gamification-research.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/02-Deterding-Khaled-Nacke-Dixon.pdf
  17. Díaz Grijalva, G. R., Camarena Gómez, B., González Lomelí, D., & Mirón Juárez, C. A. (2021). A Structural Model of the Teaching Practice and Pro-Environmental Behavior in Elementary Mexican Students. International Electronic Journal of Environmental Education, 11(1). 42–57 https://dergipark.org.tr/tr/download/article-file/1245048
  18. Dicheva, D., Dichev C., Agre G., & Angelova G. (2015). Gamification in Education: A Systematic Mapping Study. Educational Technology & Society, 18(3), 75–88. https://www.jstor.org/stable/jeductechsoci.18.3.75
  19. Duckworth, A. L., Gross, J. J. (2020). Behavior change. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 161(Supplement), 39–49. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.obhdp.2020.09.002
  20. Ewing, R., & Cervero, R. (2010). Travel and the Built Environment: A Meta-Analysis. Journal of the American Planning Association, 76(3), 265–294. https://doi.org/10.1080/01944361003766766
  21. Flury-Kleubler, P., Gutscher, H. (2001). Psychological Principles of Inducing Behaviour Change. In: Kaufmann-Hayoz, R., Gutscher, H. (Ed.) Chang-ing Things — Moving People: Strategies for Promoting Sustainable Development at the Local Level (pp. 109–129). Birkhäuser Basel. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-0348-8314-6
  22. Fonseca, X. (2023). Sustainable Mobility: How to Gamify and Factors to Better Success. In: da Silva Portela, C.F. (Ed.), Sustainable, Innovative and Intelligent Societies and Cities (pp. 115–134). Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-031-30514-6_6
  23. Gallo, M., & Marinelli, M. (2020). Sustainable Mobility: A Review of Possible Actions and Policies. Sustainability, 12(18), Article 7499. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12187499
  24. Gifford, R., & Sussman, R. (2012). Environmental attitudes. In S. D. Clayton (Ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Environmental and Conservation Psychology (pp. 65–80). Oxford University Press. https://doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199733026.013.0004
  25. Gössling, S. (2020). Why cities need to take road space from cars - and how this could be done. Journal of Urban Design, 25(4), 443–448. https://doi.org/10.1080/13574809.2020.1727318
  26. Grøntved, A., W. Koivula, R., Johansson, I., Wennberg, P., Østergaard, L., Hallmans, G., Renström, F., & W. Franks, P. (2016). Bicycling to Work and Primordial Prevention of Cardiovascular Risk: A Cohort Study Among Swedish Men and Women. Journal of the American Heart Associa-tion, 5(11), 1–12. https://doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.116.004413
  27. Guglielmetti Mugion, R., Toni, M., Raharjo, H., Di Pietro, L., & Sebathu, S. P. (2018). Does the service quality of urban public transport enhance sustainable mobility? Journal of Cleaner Production, 174, 1566–1587. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.11.052
  28. HAST, 2024. https://www.publications.qld.gov.au/dataset/healthy-active-school-transport-summative-report/resource/19fb562b-bd47-489b-b5c7-1e5914f4ab9a
  29. Heimlich, J. E., Ardoin, N. M. (2008). Understanding behavior to understand behavior change: a literature review. Environmental Education Re-search, 14(3), 215–237. https://doi.org/10.1080/13504620802148881
  30. Ilc Klun, M. (2022). Gamification in Hidden Education-Teaching Migration-Related Topics through the Didactic Board Game ‘crossing Borders’. European Journal of Geography 11(2), 6-18. https://doi.org/10.48088/ejg.m.klu.11.2.6.18
  31. Kantomaa, M., Tammelin, T., Näyhä, S., & Taanila, A. (2007). Adolescents’ physical activity in relation to family income and parents’ education. Preventive Medicine, 44(5), 410–415. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ypmed.2007.01.008
  32. Kapp, K., M. (2012). The gamification of learning and instruction: game-based methods and strategies for training and education. John Wiley & Sons, 336p. https://www.wiley.com/en-us/The+Gamification+of+Learning+and+Instruction%3A+Game+based+Methods+and+Strategies+for+Training+and+Education-p-9781118096345
  33. Kelly, J. A., & Fu, M. (2014). Sustainable school commuting – understanding choices and identifying opportunities, A case study in Dublin, Ire-land. Journal of Transport Geography, 34, 221–230. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jtrangeo.2013.12.010
  34. Kollmuss, A., & Agyeman, J. (2002). Mind the Gap: Why do people act environmentally and what are the barriers to pro-environmental behav-ior? Environmental Education Research, 8(3), 239–260. https://doi.org/10.1080/13504620220145401
  35. Lioret, S., Campbell, K. J., McNaughton, S. A., Cameron, A. J., Salmon, J., Abbott, G., & Hesketh, K. D. (2020). Lifestyle Patterns Begin in Early Childhood, Persist and Are Socioeconomically Patterned, Confirming the Importance of Early Life Interventions. Nutrients, 12(3). https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12030724
  36. Living Streets (2015). A school’s guide to running Walk Once a Week (Walk to School). https://www.livingstreets.org.uk/media/1477/wow-how-to-guide-2015-16.pdf
  37. Mammen, G., Stone, M. R., Buliung, R., & Faulkner, G. (2014b). School travel planning in Canada: Identifying child, family, and school-level char-acteristics associated with travel mode shift from driving to active school travel. Journal of Transport & Health, 1(4), 288–294. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jth.2014.09.004
  38. Mammen, G., Stone, M., Faulkner, G., Ramanathan, S., Buliung, R., O'Brien, C., & Kennedy, J. (2014a). Active school travel: An evaluation of the Canadian school travel planning intervention. Preventive Medicine, 60, 55–59. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ypmed.2013.12.008
  39. Manzano-León A, Camacho-Lazarraga P, Guerrero MA, Guerrero-Puerta L, Aguilar-Parra JM, Trigueros R, Alias A. 2021. Between Level Up and Game Over: A Systematic Literature Review of Gamification in Education. Sustainability, 13(4), 2247. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13042247
  40. Marentič Požarnik, B. (2022). Vzgoja in izobraževanje za trajnostni razvoj – izkušnje, dileme in perspektive [Education for Sustainable Develop-ment – Experiences, Dilemmas and Perspectives]. Sodobna pedagogika, 73(2), 26–40. https://www.sodobna-pedagogika.net/en/articles/02-2022_education-for-sustainable-development-experiences-dilemmas-and-perspectives/
  41. Marucci, E., Gatta, V., Le Pira, M. (2018). Gamification design to foster stakeholder engagement and behavior change: An application to urban freight transport. Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, 118, 119–132. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tra.2018.08.028
  42. MERS (2021). Records of institutions and programs – List of primary schools in Slovenia. [Data set] Ministry of Education Republic of Slovenia. https://paka3.mss.edus.si/registriweb/Seznam1.aspx?Seznam=2010
  43. Moening, K., & Zimmerman, S. (2018). The Wheels on the Bike Go Round & Round. How to Get a Bike Train Rolling at Your School. Safe Routes to School National Partnership. https://www.saferoutespartnership.org/sites/default/files/resource_files/the_wheels_on_the_bus_go_round_and_round.pdf
  44. Mogensen, F., & K. Schnack, K. (2010). The Action Competence Approach and the ‘New’ Discourses of Education for Sustainable Development, Competence and Quality Criteria. Environmental Education Research, 16(1), 59–74. https://doi.org/10.1080/13504620903504032
  45. Molina-García, J., Campos, S., García-Massó, X., Herrador-Colmenero, M., Gálvez-Fernández, P., Molina-Soberanes, D., Queralt, A. & Chillón, P. (2020). Different neighborhood walkability indexes for active commuting to school are necessary for urban and rural children and adoles-cents. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 17, 124. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12966-020-01028-0
  46. Moran, M. R., Eizenberg, E., & Plaut, P. (2017). Getting to know a place: Built environment walkability and children’s spatial representation of their home-school (h-s) route. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 14(6), 607. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph14060607
  47. Napier, M. A., Brown, B. B., Werner, C. M., & Gallimore, J. (2011). Walking to school: Community design and child and parent barriers. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 31(1), 45–51. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvp.2010.04.005
  48. Ng, P., & Cheung, C. T. Y. (2022). Why do young people do things for the environment? The effect of perceived values on pro-environmental behaviour. Young Consumers, 23(4), 539–554. https://doi.org/10.1108/YC-11-2021-1411
  49. OECD. (2002) Soft measures and transport behaviour. Environmentally sustainable transport (Issues papers). OECD. https://www.oecd.org/env/greening-transport/16199621.pdf
  50. OECD. (2004). Mobility 2030: Meeting the challenges to sustainability. The Sustainable Mobility Project (Full report 2004). OECD. https://www.oecd.org/sd-roundtable/papersandpublications/39360485.pdf
  51. Ogrin, M., Resnik Planinc, T., Ilc Klun, M., & Plevnik, A. (2019). Trajnostna mobilnost. Priročnik za učitelje v osnovnih šolah [Sustainable Mobility. Handbook for primary school teachers]. Ministry of Infrastructure. https://www.gov.si/assets/ministrstva/MOPE/TRAJNOSTNA-MOBILNOST-STMPP/Javno-narocilo-TM-v-vrtcih-in-solah/trajnostna-mobilnost-sola-web-za-SPTM.pdf
  52. Otrin, K., Benčina, M., Živčič, L., Resnik Planinc, T., & Plevnik, A. (2013). Trajnostna mobilnost. Priročnik za vzgojitelje v vrtcih [Sustainable Mobili-ty. Handbook for preschool teachers]. Ministry of Infrastructure.
  53. Piao, X., & Managi, S. (2023) The international role of education in sustainable lifestyles and economic development. Scientific Reports, 13, Article 8733. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-023-35173-w
  54. Popovič, E. (2022). Analiza šolskih poti na izbranih primerih v Sloveniji [Analysis of school paths – cases from Slovenia]. [Unpublished master’s thesis]. University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Arts, Department of Geography. https://repozitorij.uni-lj.si/IzpisGradiva.php?id=141748
  55. Renaud, C., & Wagoner, B. (2011). The gamification of learning. Principal leadership, 12(1), 57–59.
  56. Resnik Planinc, T., Ogrin, M., Ilc Klun, M., & Glojek, K. (2018). Implementation of sustainable mobility in education. Znanstvena založba Filozofske fakultete. https://doi.org/10.4312/9789610600145
  57. Sailer, M., Hense, J. U., Mayr, S. K., Heinz Mandl, H. (2017). How gamification motivates: An experimental study of the effects of specific game design elements on psychological need satisfaction. Computers in Human Behavior, 69, 371–380. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2016.12.033
  58. Sipone, S., Abella, V., Barreda, & Rojo, M. (2019). Learning about Sustainable Mobility in Primary Schools from a Playful Perspective: A Focus Group Approach. Sustainability. 11(8), Article 2387. https://doi.org/10.3390/su11082387
  59. Sirard, J., & Slater, M. (2008). Walking and Bicycling to School: A Review. American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine, 2(5), 372–396. https://doi.org/10.1177/1559827608320127
  60. Skayannis, P., Goudas, M., & Rodakinias, P. (2017). Sustainable mobility and physical activity: a meaningful marriage. Transportation Research Procedia, 24, 81–88. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.trpro.2017.05.072
  61. Skou Grindsted, T. (2013). From The Human-Environment Theme Towards Sustainability – Danish Geography And Education For Sustainable Development. European Journal of Geography, 4(3), 6–20. https://eurogeojournal.eu/index.php/egj/article/view/521
  62. Smiderle, R., Rigo, S. J., Marques, L. B., Peçanha de Miranda Coelho, J. A., Jaques, P. A (2020). The impact of gamification on students’ learning, engagement and behavior based on their personality traits. Smart Learning Environments, 7, Article 3. https://doi.org/10.1186/s40561-019-0098-x
  63. Smith, L., Norgate, S., Cherrett, T., Davies, N., Winstanley, C., & Harding, M. (2015). Walking School Buses as a Form of Active Transportation for Children—A Review of the Evidence. Journal of School Health, 85(3), 197–210. https://doi.org/10.1111/josh.12239
  64. Stark, J., Beyer Bartana, I., & Fritz, A. (2015). Examing mobility behaviour among youth – a progress report. Transportation Research Procedia, 11, 481–491. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.trpro.2015.12.040
  65. Strah, R. (2016). Smernice za šolske poti: smernice za izdelavo učinkovitih načrtov šolskih poti, kriteriji in pregled varnosti na šolskih poteh ter označevanje šolskih poti [Guidelines for school routes: guidelines for creating effective plans for school routes, criteria and review of safety on school routes and marking of school routes]. Slovenian Traffic Safety Agency.
  66. Su, J., Jerrett, M., McConnell, R., Berhane, K., Dunton, G., Shankardass, K., Reynolds, K., Chang, R., & Wolch, J. (2013). Factors influencing whether children walk to school. Health & Place, 22, 153–161. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.healthplace.2013.03.011
  67. Suchanek, M., & Szmelter-Jarosz, A. (2019). Environmental Aspects of Generation Y’s Sustainable Mobility. Sustainability, 11(11), Article 3204. https://doi.org/10.3390/su11113204
  68. Sund, P. (2016). Discerning Selective Traditions in Science Education: A Qualitative Study of Teachers’ Responses to What is Important in Science Teaching. Cultural Studies of Science Education, 11(2), 387–409. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11422-015-9666-8
  69. SURS (2022). Register of spatial units. [Data set]. Surveying and Mapping Authority of the Republic of Slovenia. https://egp.gu.gov.si/egp/
  70. Talmage, C. A., & Frederick, C. (2019). Quality of Life, Multimodality, and the Demise of the Autocentric Metropolis: A Multivariate Analysis of 148 Mid Size U.S. Cities. Social Indicators Research, 141(1), 365–390. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11205-017-1829-4
  71. Toda, A.M., Valle, P.H.D., Isotani, S. (2018). The Dark Side of Gamification: An Overview of Negative Effects of Gamification in Education. In: Cristea, A., Bittencourt, I., Lima, F. (Ed.) Higher Education for All. From Challenges to Novel Technology-Enhanced Solutions. HEFA 2017. Communications in Computer and Information Science, vol 832. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-97934-2_9
  72. Yen, B., T.H., Mulley, C., Burke, M. (2019). Gamification in transport interventions: Another way to improve travel behavioural change. Cities, 85, 140–149. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cities.2018.09.002
  73. Wals, A. E. (Ed.). (2009). Social Learning Towards a Sustainable World: Principles, Perspectives, and Praxis. Wageningen Academic Publishers. https://doi.org/10.3920/978-90-8686-594-9
  74. Wang, W., Gan, H., Wang, X., Lu, H., Huang, Y. (2022). Initiatives and challenges in using gamification in transportation: a systematic mapping. European Transport Research Review, 14, Article 41. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12544-022-00567-w
  75. Zakon o osnovni šoli (2016) [Basic School Act]. Uradni list RS, št. 70/05. http://www.pisrs.si/Pis.web/pregledPredpisa?id=ZAKO4510
  76. Zvarych, I., Kalaur, S., M., Prymachenko, N., M., Romachenko, I., V., Romanyshyna, O., I. (2019). Gamification as a Tool for Stimulating the Educa-tional Activity od Students of Higher Educational Institutions of Ukraine and the United States. European Journal of Educational Research, 8(3), 875–891. https://doi.org/10.12973/eu-jer.8.3.875