PlaySAFe: Results from a Virtual Reality Study Using Digital Game-Based Learning for SAFe Agile Software Development

O’Farrell E., Yilmaz M., Güleç U., Clarke P.

28th European Conference on Systems, Software and Services Process Improvement, EuroSPI 2021, Krems, Austria, 1 - 03 September 2021, vol.1442, pp.695-707 identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Conference Paper / Full Text
  • Volume: 1442
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/978-3-030-85521-5_47
  • City: Krems
  • Country: Austria
  • Page Numbers: pp.695-707
  • Keywords: Software engineering processes, Digital game-based learning, Agile frameworks, SAFe, SERIOUS GAME
  • TED University Affiliated: Yes


© 2021, Springer Nature Switzerland AG.A common strategy to train software practitioners in agile frameworks is to have employees undertake classroom-based training. However, due to its nature, participants are lectured for a scheduled time-line with little necessity to interact. In particular, classroom-based training often might not provide substantial trainee interaction, which could result in apathy. To tackle this issue, we conducted empirical research to investigate the role of digital game-based learning (GBL) in employees’ training on the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe). To figure out whether gameplay was a preferable training method, PlaySAFe (i.e., a 3D game) was developed within the study’s scope and tested with nine active SAFe practitioners from an industrial setting. Restrictions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic have forced many to seek alternative means of teaching and learning. In particular, the findings obtained from the tests illustrate that PlaySAFe can be effectively used as a complementary tool that supports SAFe classroom-based training. This study has highlighted numerous benefits of GBL, such as allowing newcomers a quick and efficient means to learn and understand the practical groundwork of SAFe in advance of learning more theoretical concepts in conventional training.