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The Gamification of Learning and Instruction: Game-based Methods and Strategies for Training and Education - By Karl Kapp

 

Posted on Mon, 14/05/2012 - 10:46

Designing Digitally, Inc. would like to congratulate one of the most influential writers in our eLearning, serious games, and virtual world industry today. Karl Kapp has done it again with his new book titled The Gamification of Learning and Instruction: Game-based Methods and Strategies for Training and Education. This book is the ultimate guide to explaining how and why to gamify your learning for government agencies and corporate clients.

In the book Kapp explains the fundamentals of how to create effective gamified learning. Organizations often think they are creating gamification with their learning by implementing basic content with a scoreboard or even a Jeopardy-like experience for the learners. While some would argue that using these tools is creating a gamified learning experience, you are also referring to what was being done by the eLearning industry five to ten years ago. This type of thinking is out of date and has a track record for failure. Kapp explains how gamification is truly a way of thinking and this could not be any more true. Gamification requires thinking outside the box, rather than pushing your content into an already existing game show or similar setting.

The gamification theme is a popular trend in the eLearning industry today and is being adopted by large companies and government agencies. These organizations are using game-based learning to leverage the competitiveness of employees, provide experiential learning, and are even using it for recruiting purposes. Here at Designing Digitally, Inc. gamification is one of our core services that has provided a track record for positive return on investments. Andrew Hughes the President of Designing Digitally, Inc. made the statement, "Gamification is not something that can be done by everyone; it takes the ability to think outside the box and use both game developers and instructional designers together to create an experience not yet even imagined by the client. Years ago we would have a hard time convincing the CEO's and the VP's of companies to accept gamification, and now they are knocking on our doors asking us to convert conventional presentation content into educational, engaging, and entertaining learning that will grasp the attention of the new generations entering the workforce while also providing visual references for the older generations within the organization. Karl's book explains in detail the way to approach learning and lays the foundation for companies that have specialized in this for years such as Designing Digitally, Inc. I commend him for his work and hopefully this opens the eyes of some of the naysayers we've experienced in the past."

A strong and important word of warning from Kapp is that not all content lends itself to be converted into a game. You must review and analyze both the content and the target audience to determine whether or not it will be the right approach. In our experience, we’ve found that when a company attempts to transform their content into a game and hasn’t found a positive ROI, they often don’t have an answer as to why they chose the route of gamification. In the book Kapp explains what does and does not work when considering gamifying your content. He has provided multiple case studies from many different organizations, agencies, and institutions including several of Designing Digitally, Inc.’s training simulation & serious game examples.

Designing Digitally, Inc. again congratulates Kapp on an amazing book and suggests to everyone in our industry to pick up a copy from Amazon.com. The book is an excellent reference guide and explains why Designing Digitally, Inc. does what we do and why the industry is turning to gamification for enhanced learning.