7 Techniques For Online Educators To Gamify Their Digital Classrooms

7 Techniques For Online Educators To Gamify Their Digital Classrooms

Jun 6, 2017, 7:07:01 PM News

Educational has been changing over the past few decades as technological progress has made lessons available not only in the classrooms but also online, often adding many interesting tools to the process.

However, despite all that changes, it could still be hard to motivate students to learn. Modern students have too many opportunities and too many distractions, so it could be challenging for them to stick to a certain course and to complete it effectively.

Thankfully, there are some approaches that can help with that. Gamification is one of the most interesting techniques: it has already impacted many other areas of our lives and proved itself to be successful. Collecting stamps to earn a free coffee is gamification. Even completing your profile on one a websites until you see “100% complete” borrows from gamification.

Gamification can make ordinary things a bit more interesting, giving us some extra motivation we might need. So it isn’t surprising that it is being used in the online education too. Just as using of proofreading services can help come up with a flawless error-free papers and, gamification can also be useful to students, helping them to keep their motivation up high.

That’s why today we want to offer you 7 amazing gamification techniques that can be used in digital classrooms.


1.    Add some competition.

Competition doesn’t always have to be discouraging – it can inspire and entertain students if presented right. You can try dividing your online class into a few smaller groups and give them a certain assignment. This will not only allow them to refresh their knowledge of the course program but will also encourage them to communicate and cooperate together.

Sure, group competition for online students differs a lot from the one that is meant for offline ones. It takes more time and effort for students to cooperate with each other using various task managers (like Slack, for example). All you have to do is to create an assignment for them, advice using some of those task managers – and see how it will work.  


2.    Use achievement system.

This might seem a little funny at first – after all, students aren’t in kindergarten anymore. However, we don’t offer you to give them golden stars – no, come up with a list of achievements that will be related to the course and nice to get.

Such system is used in different ways by many learning services (for example, the language learning ones) and by other websites too (for example, Steam also has a list of various award badges). It has been working successfully for many people, so why don’t you try it too?

Of course, it is important not to simply create graphic badges saying “best student”, but think of something more creative. For example, if you teach an online course about graphic design, you can come up with badges saying “Photoshop Padawan”, “Sketch Jedi Master”, and so on.


3.    Run a puzzle test.

One of the best things about these tests is that they can be completely different – group ones, individual ones, etc. You can offer them to students or give them the assignment to come up with a puzzle test for their course mates, basing these tests on the material that they’ve learned so far.

These puzzle tests come in different forms, starting from quizzes and ending with crossword puzzles. Though I suggest coming up with something more interesting than a simple quiz – as students do get these quizzes all the time, so it won’t look like something unusual.


4.    Incorporate video games into the learning process.

Many people love video games. Moreover, video games don’t have to entertain only – for example, you can choose some educational ones and show them to your students. But even if there aren’t any educational games related to your subject, you can still think of a way to add games to your course. For example, if you teach language, you can encourage students to discuss their favorite games using the words they’ve learned recently, and so on.


5.    Try gamifying grading.

Grading itself could become more interesting process if you approach it differently. Try putting standard grading system aside and coming up with something more interesting instead. For example, some teachers use “experience points” instead of grades. This reminds many students of computer games, where you upgrade your level while you progress with game’s tasks. But what’s even more important is that it actually shows students how far did they moved through the course and how much progress did they make.

You can even create an online chart, designing it in a style of video games and naming it “heroes of the course”, for example. This chart will allow the student to compare their “experience points” and see their progress more clearly. Moreover, you can even come up with titles for certain experience levels, starting with “trainee” and ending with “legendary warrior”, for example.


6.    Use question games.

Ask one of your students to select a word that is somehow related to your course: this can be a scientific term, a new word, someone’s surname, and so on. Then ask the others to try guessing what the word is by asking this student various question. This game is fun and it also allows students to refresh their memory a bit.


7.    Use quizzes.

Quizzes can be a great way to check students’ level of knowledge, motivate them, and add a bit of competition too. You can run them often or choose to do it only once a while – it’s up to you. If you want to, you can also come up with some kind of a reward for a student who’ll get the best quiz score – this will definitely encourage them even more.

True, gamification is one of the best tools to increase students’ motivation. But what’s even more important is that it makes the whole educational process much more interesting and diverse. Your students won’t know what exactly to expect on your lessons – and that could help keep them curious.

Moreover, such non-typical approach could also help your students remember things better: they will definitely have more fun in the process and so will pay more attention to it. They will also be able to polish their knowledge during games, building up some important association chains.

But probably the best thing about it is that your course will become truly unique and interesting to your students. Isn’t is what every teacher hopes for: to make students love their course?

We hope that these tips will help you gamify your lessons and wish you good luck with it!


Published by Lori Wade

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