Gamified learning techniques can be a powerful way to engage learners and motivate them to complete your course content.
What Is Gamified Learning?
It’s a common misconception that only children like to play games. You need only look at the success of games such as Candy Crush to debunk this notion. Gamified learning incorporates game-like elements into learning content to enhance the learners’ engagement with your course.
Why You Should Use Gamified Learning in Your Course Content
Gamified learning increases students’ engagement with the content, making them more likely to continue the course. Instuition.com states that 80% of US workers found game-based learning a more engaging type of education, and companies found that using games as part of their training increased employee engagement by 60% and productivity by 50%.
Similarly, edyoucate.org states that gamified learning increases motivation, strengthens communication, and develops specific skills. It’s more enjoyable for the learners too. The edyoucate article also states that 95% of the employees surveyed enjoy gamified learning. And if they’re enjoying themselves, they’re more likely to remember the content you’re trying to teach them.
How to Use Gamified Learning Techniques in Your Course Content
So, now that you understand what gamified learning is and why it’s a good addition to your content, let’s look at how you can implement its techniques into your course.
Define Your Learning Objectives
Start by defining what you want your learners to learn – the key concepts and skills you want them to walk away with after they’ve completed your course. This step sets the tone for the rest of the process, so it’s important to take some time to consider all your possibilities. Our blog on how to create the best elearning content has some useful tips to help you get started.
Choose Your Model
When creating elearning content, you can structure it using several content development frameworks. These are ADDIE, SAM, Agile Model, Rapid eLearning, Action Mapping, and ARCS Model. Using one of these models will help you create a well-organized course that learners love.
Choose Appropriate Games
We said above that adults love games as much as children, and adults benefit greatly from playing games. Busy Teacher outlines nine reasons educational courses for adults learning English as a second language must include games, but these are applicable to all types of courses, regardless of their subject matter. The kind of game you choose should be relevant to what you’re trying to teach, and you should vary the game at every level. It becomes very boring doing the same thing repeatedly, and you may find that students lose interest at this stage.
Include Rewards and Incentives
Adults love a bit of competition, even if they claim they don’t, and you can use this to motivate them. Offering virtual rewards, such as badges, points, or new/exclusive content, promotes continuation. You could even offer tangible rewards, including certificates or discounts on future courses, if students reach a certain milestone. Whatever you decide to do, the rewards you offer should be meaningful and reinforce learning.
Design a Story
Creating an engaging storyline or narrative that connects the content with the activities makes your course content more engaging and memorable. You could include options where the learner has to choose the next scene in the story or has to complete a challenge to make it to the next chapter. Doing this will involve students in the content and make it more likely that they’ll continue their learning. Paladin Studios has a fantastic step-by-step guide to creating a good game story.
Provide Clear Instructions
You must provide clear instructions to your learners for navigating and interacting with the gamified learning in your course. You don’t want your learners to be confused about what they’re trying to accomplish because this might discourage them from learning. Offer tutorials or introductory materials to familiarize learners with the content and games.
Foster Competition and Collaboration
We said earlier that adults love games, but they also love competition and collaboration. Meaningfullife says that healthy competition is one of the greatest assets for self-improvement, and it’s probably why your learners are doing the course anyway. You could incorporate leaderboards to display top learners or create collaborative activities to foster teamwork. Having a balance of the two is usually the best way to go.
Provide Immediate Feedback
Similarly, immediate feedback is essential for effective learning. When learners receive immediate feedback after they’ve completed an activity, it reinforces what they’ve just learned. You should use feedback to correct and explain incorrect responses and guide learners to where they can find relevant information. Doing this helps them understand where they went wrong and how they can fix it.
Integrate Progress Tracking
Learners like to see how they’re getting on. Therefore, it’s vital that you incorporate progress tracking into your elearning platform. Doing this is harder than it sounds because you want to make sure it encourages and motivates your learners. Articulate suggests using a progress bar somewhere on your page so your learners can see how much further they have to go. The site highlights six examples of how other courses have integrated progress bars uniquely and creatively. However you decide to use a progress bar, visual representations can help learners track their progress.
Optimize for Mobile
With more than 80% of the global population owning a smartphone, it’s imperative that your students can access the course from their phones. Many people use their commute or lunch break to learn, and often all they have is their phones. Their ability to engage with the content when and where it suits them means they’ll be more likely to complete it. But the benefits of mobile elearning extend to businesses too. Our blog on the importance of mobile-friendly elearning content states that 90% of businesses have experienced better returns on investment when creating mobile-friendly elearning content.
Edit and Proofread
We talk all the time about the importance of editing and proofreading any content you plan to publish, and the same applies to elearning content. While you’re editing and proofreading, it’s important to keep your customer in mind, create and use a style guide, address bottlenecks as soon as they appear, and review your process regularly. We have more tips in our blog, 10 tips for proofreading and editing elearning courses.
Just because your course is live, it doesn’t mean your work is over. Now you need to get out there and promote the course. If people don’t know about it, how can they take it? Promoting elearning courses can be challenging, but it needn’t be if you follow the steps in our blog. You want to get your content in front of as many of your target audience as possible to convert them into buying learners.
Measure and Improve
You should continuously evaluate the effectiveness of your gamified learning techniques and gather feedback from learners. Perhaps there’s an aspect of the course that they just don’t like or, conversely, that they love and want more of. Adjust and refine your course based on the insights you gather. Doing this will also indicate to your learners that you value their opinions.
Using games in your elearning content is one of the best things you can do. Games increase engagement, motivation, and enjoyment. However, you need to choose the right games and implement them in the right way to get the most from your content. If you follow our 13 steps, you’ll be well on your way to creating engaging content that your learners love.
Many steps are involved in creating gamified content, so why not outsource the proofreading and editing? Proofed’s team of experienced editors has helped over 1,000 businesses create content that their customers love. When you’re ready to see what we can do for you, take a look at our business services.