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Digital Learning: Game-Based Learning

Game-Based Learning

Game-based learning (or gamification) is NOT creating games for your students to play in class. It is taking gaming elements and incorporating them into your class. Elements of gaming that you might consider including are competition, points, badges, incentives, etcetera. Because games by their very nature require active participation, basing your class on gaming elements can make your class more active.

Why should you care about gaming in your class? A 2014 New Media Consortium and EDUCAUSE Report (citing the Entertainment Software Association) noted "the average age of today's gamers is 30, with 68% of gamers over 18 years old--university age" (42). To help, this page includes ideas and examples of game-based learning. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Dusty Folds.

Also, check out SIMAGES, the newsletter for the North American Simulation and Gaming Association (NASAGA) for more ideas.


various badges

Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Image)

One common form of gamification is allowing participants to receive badges. Certain apps such as Untapped and Foursquare already do this by allowing users to track their actions, share with others, and collect badges. (Untapped focuses on beer whereas Foursquare tracks placese the user has visited.)

Scavenger Hunts

scavenger hunt map with treasure

(Scavenger Hunt Flyer by Ryan Ruppe, Flickr)

While scavenger hunts have been a staple in many libraries for orientation classes, they can also benefit a variety of courses and even make events more interactive. Institutions have used scavenger hunts for orientations to the campus, to create more interactive campus tours, and to add an enjoyable element to campus events.