Gamification, Games, and Learning: What Managers and Practitioners Need to Know

Research Library

August 8, 2013

Gamification is about applying game elements and game mechanics to non-game activities to make these activities more compelling. This report discusses common definitions of games and gamification and shows how game design techniques and game elements such as stories, points, and challenges can achieve needed learning outcomes. You’ll learn how game mechanics and game elements work in learning and explore good practices for designing stories, characters, leaderboards, points, levels, and challenges through concrete examples—such as how Adobe uses gamification to increase both training and usage of their Photoshop software.

In this report, Brenda Enders examines research showing the valuable results that can be achieved with games and gamification. For example, Traci Sitzmann’s meta-analysis shows that training presented in the context of certain types of games led to measurably higher skills and knowledge. And B.J. Fogg, who directs the Persuasive Technology Lab at Stanford University, has found that people tend to respond to computers as if they are people, especially during gaming, an encouraging note for the design of good learning interactions.



This report examines games and gamification and shows, via numerous examples, how game mechanics and game elements such as stories, points, and challenges can achieve significant learning outcomes.

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