Date of Award

Spring 2020

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Committee Chair

Dr. Kyna Shelley

Committee Chair School


Committee Member 2

Dr. Lillian Hill

Committee Member 2 School


Committee Member 3

Dr. Richard Mohn

Committee Member 3 School


Committee Member 4

Dr. Rose Jones

Committee Member 4 School



Societal advancements have aided in the evolution of twenty-first-century adult learners. Learners no longer conform to traditional instruction; instead, instruction that adapts to the learner’s needs are necessary. Conventional learning that ensues multi-domain approaches to learning is on the rise. Play-based learning is one such approach that is multifaceted, and versatility in bridging gaps that exist between the learner and the curriculum. Play-based learning is a form of instruction that has the potential to encompass the whole learner by allowing opportunities for cognitive, affective, and psychomotor interactions throughout learning. However, for many, play-based learning is an instructional approach represented solely in childhood education. Nonetheless, when paired with instruction play-based learning is both an intrinsic and extrinsic way for adults to learn.

The research conducted in this study aimed to assess GED participants' perceptions of play-based learning current and potential instructional use in Mississippi (GED) General Adult Development programs. Programs that have seen steady declines in retention and completion rates since the adoption of a revised, Common Core aligned GED assessment. Analysis of the responses indicated a significantly positive correlation. Mississippi GED participants reported play was useful in developing the cognitive, affective, and psychomotor aspects of learning.