Gamification: For students to enjoy learning

If you're a teacher looking for a way to spice up the classroom atmosphere, then you're at the right place! Whether it's a midterm season, finals season, or two days before the winter break, before lunch, after lunch, or five minutes until the bell rings — you're tired, your students are tired, and nothing is getting through to them. They need a break, but their exams are still creeping up, so what do you do? You make it fun — you make learning fun.

What is Gamification?

Gamification is the application of game-design elements and game principles in non-game contexts. It can also be defined as a set of activities and processes to solve problems by using or applying the characteristics of game elements. Therefore, gamification learning is essentially an approach that takes academic tasks and formulates them into game-like activities to motivate and engage students in the learning environment.

Elements of Gamification

Points - Points are used as visual identifiers of progress in sports and video games and are collectable. Points are a representation of time and effort spent on a particular area.
Badges - Badges display achievement, most often used to represent a form of status. Unlike points that can be earned, badges are given to the learners for specific achievements.
Leaderboards - Leaderboards are used across sports, teams and are most relevant to the working world to present competitive placement. Points and badges can drive satisfaction, but leaderboards encourage peer competitiveness and boosting self-esteem.

Why Does Gamification Work?

Gamification works because it triggers human emotions. Games come with happiness and excitement. Psychology is responsible for anything that requires thought, motivation, or behavioural patterns. Gamification, which requires a combination of all three, suggests that its success in learners engagement is fully supported with psychological reasoning.

Things to Keep in Mind

Nothing is 100% foolproof. If gamification were, then it'd be implemented in every existing educational board already. Critics of Gamification Learning believe that it may create problems with student attention span. In the long run, students may begin to gamified expectations to all parts of their education and become frustrated when they don't find it.

Gamification in learning should be used in moderation to assist students' learning but not become the primary teaching technique.