Structure Gamified Learning

Structure Gamified Learning

Structure your gamified learning

Structuring learning is one of the hardest things for an instructor to do. Sometimes that means reusing a syllabus. Other times you have to fit 16 weeks’ worth of content into 10 weeks. In either case, making sure that your students meet all course learning outcomes in your course’s time frame can be difficult.

That’s when structuring you’re your class can be gamified. Many instructors rely on a schedule in order to break up their content. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t also use that time to gamify your structure.

Your progression system

One thing that many gamers will recognize is the progression system: complete this task, finish this level, beat that boss and you’ll earn coins, an item, or experience points. You’ll always end up getting something. That something can also be used to codify what the learner has done. It rewards an achievement.

What most educators don’t know is that a class be structured the same way. It doesn’t have to be a progression of one topic area to the other. Rather, you can take the time to scaffold your learners’ experiences in a meaningful way.

An example of this is structuring your students’ learning like a journey. Perhaps a journey that you go on with other students / players in your class where the outcome is the development of individual understanding.

A fantastic example of this is in the course “Fantastic Places, Unhuman Humans: Exploring Humanity Through Literature” offered at Brown University. In this class, students must serve as liaisons for humanity by communicating with an alien. They must interpret some of history’s greatest fiction stories in order to relate to another being what it is like to be human through our literature.

In this class and in other gamified learning systems there are instances where the learner tests their knowledge, skills, and abilities through assessments. Those assessments can be the test and quizzes that you’ve designed. But now, they are part of the story rather than just part of the schedule of your class.


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