Designing and Solving Crossword Puzzles: Examining Efficacy in a Classroom Exercise


  • Carlos Mario Zapata Jaramillo
  • Bell Manrique Losada
  • Michael J. Fekula


Using games in the classroom is an effective pedagogy. This paper examines both the creation and solution of crossword puzzles by students. Designing and solving puz-zles requires several useful skills including the exercise of vocabulary, reasoning, and spelling. Although the use of crosswords in the classroom is not new, we propose an alternative view of the process by having students both design and solve puzzles. We evaluate this approach with case studies accompanied by results revealing the suitabil-ity of the exercise for undergraduate students. These find-ings show that students perceive themselves to be better equipped to handle concepts as a result of this crossword puzzle exercise.