Welcome to the first installation of our weekly 3-part series, 7 Smart Ways To Improve Learning With Gamification! In this post, you’ll learn about the fundamental differences between gamification and games, and the importance of giving timely feedback to your audience.
Learning anything can feel like a bitch of an uphill battle, for anyone. Lucky for you, we’ve got the perfect solution! That’s because it’s simple, and most elegant in its delivery. See, that’s the beauty of gamification. Simply put, gamification works because it gets straight to the heart of what motivates people, finds out what sticks, and uses it to mould a fun and effective experience. So if you’ve ever had a tough time learning anything, or need to create an effective learning experience for an audience… Well, you’ve come to the right place!
Over the next couple of posts, I’ll be sharing with you 7 smart ways for you to apply gamification for learning for your student audience. Feel free to apply them however you see fit, but remember this: the gems of gamification shine brightest if applied correctly, and intelligently.
Tip no. 1: Applying gamification is not the same as making a game.
The key thing with gamification is to understand what motivates your audience, and to correctly apply elements found in games (points, challenges and levels) to pique interest and keep them on their toes. On the other hand, games (read: Candy Crush/ Flappy Bird) simply aren’t optimized for the learning agenda. In the virtual worlds that they create, it’s easy for users to get distracted by all that flashy, gimmicky jazz that technology has to offer. Sooner than you’d expect, users have been led far off the learning trail and into a dizzying pursuit for special powers and extra lives.
For an effective learning experience, an intelligent application of gamification will work to keep your campaign fresh and fun, while staying true to the aim of acquiring knowledge.
Tip no. 2: Give (timely) feedback
Feedback acts as the fundamental navigational tool that tells us where we currently are, and what we’d need to do to get to our desired goal. Acting on timely feedback also provides users with a sense of moving forward, and some mastery over their learning journey.
An effective gamified learning experience should offer your learners immediate feedback on whatever actions they’ve just accomplished, be it answering a question or offering a suggestion or two. Points-based interfaces can also be used to reward your learning audience for their effort as well as performance.
Well dear reader, I hope you’ve enjoyed learning more about our first 2 tips for gamifying learning. In the meantime, I’ll leave you with this fun and highly informative video detailing the benefits of gamifying education, courtesy of the Extra Credits team, after the footnotes below.
This post is the first installation of our weekly 3-part series, 7 Smart Ways To Improve Learning With Gamification. Next week, I’ll be giving you 3 other tips; the low-down on the benefits of user empowerment, leveraging on social networks, and the fundamental importance of user experience. Stay tuned!
This post was contributed by Erika Tuason, Business Director @ Gametize
Edited by Keith Ng