Gamification: Using Games to Learn

Gamification is the concept of applying game mechanics and game design techniques to engage and motivate people to achieve their goals. – Badgeville

Gamification is not a new idea. In fact, it has been around longer than the term has existed. Anyone who has ever learned geography playing Carmen Sandiego can attest to that. However, it is only over the last few years that gamification is really beginning to make massive inroads into the education scene (see: Ananth Pai – How video games can educate children).

Although gamification is often discussed in the context of technology, it should be noted that gamification does not require the use of video games for it to work. For example, children can also learn statistics through the board game Risk.

There is no doubt that gamification can be an extremely effective method for engaging students, but before we rush headlong into it, we need to understand how it works because, like everything else in life, even a good idea can fall flat if it is applied poorly.

The following infographic, created by Knewton and Column Five Media, offers a terrific overview on gamification in education:

Gamification

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