elearning gamification: 3 questions to help you start playing

Gamification has been a hot topic in elearning for some time now and it’s no surprise. A survey conducted by Deloitte indicated that 80% of learners feel learning would be more productive if it were more game-orientated. Not only that, during a University of Colorado study on the impact of simulations and games in adult learners, participants:

  • Scored 14% higher in skill-based knowledge assessments.
  • Achieved 11% higher in terms of factual knowledge
  • Had 9% increase in retention rate

This shows that gamification not only helps online learners acquire knowledge and skills more effectively, but also it allows them to retain information and commit it to long term memory for future use.

So, with that in mind, where do you begin? I’ve comprised 3 questions to kick start the process of gamification in your organisation effectively.

1. What do you want your learners to achieve through gamification?

Gamification, when used correctly can be a powerful tool in learning. But for it to be successful you need to make sure that you are clear on the goals you want your learners to be able to achieve.

  • Is your main priority to engage the learners? If so, try grabbing your learner’s attention with a warmup: How many questions can they get right in thirty seconds? Or, how many mistakes can they spot in the statement?
  • Do you need your learners to improve their performance? Why not try giving them polls so they can compete with other learners through leader boards.
  • Or, do they need to develop new skills? Why not try giving them challenges, quests, or problems to solve.

2. What do you want your learners to retain and recall?

Gamification in elearning allows learning professionals to create experiences that fully engage their learners. It is a powerful tool so you need to make sure that your play matches the mission of your organisation. You should focus on information that you feel will be the most beneficial for your learners to retain and recall.

3. How can we ensure that the gamification has real world application?

Gamification in elearning can improve knowledge absorption and boost knowledge retention by providing awareness of real-world benefits. Learners are able to get a first-hand look at whether their choices within the course result in consequences. For example, gamification can be great for developing negotiation skills before putting your sales team in front of clients.

I hope this blog has given you some food for thought on how you can move from thinking about gamification to implementing it in your elearning courses.