Trends & Roles Blog

This Blog assignment began by Skyping with my assigned learning partner, Jennifer. We agreed on the learning topic of Gamification. Our next step was to research two articles and/or websites; one relating to the current or emerging trends; and the other relating to the emerging or changing role of the adult educator. After Jenn and I found articles pertaining to the two areas of focus, we Skyped and shared our notes.

Gamification can be defined as: the process of adding games or game-like elements to something (as a task) so as to encourage participation (Merriam-Webster).

I was excited to learn more about our topic of Gamification because I’ve had some recent exposure through a new project at work. 

New Insights Reflection: ‘What new insights have you gained in terms of the variety of roles that adult educators play?’

“Gamification in eLearning helps create an effective learning system that enables learners to rehearse real-life scenarios and challenges in a safe environment.” Intuition suggests that gamification may be able to motivate students to learn better and to care more about school. For example, badges equal grades. Students are rewarded for desired behaviors and punished for undesirable behaviors using this common currency as a reward system. But the existence of game-like elements does not translate directly to engagement.

Educational gamification proposes the use of game-like rule systems, player experiences and cultural roles to shape learners’ behavior. Games provide complex systems of rules for players to explore through active experimentation and discovery.  Games guide players through the mastery process and keep them engaged with potentially difficult tasks (Koster, 2004). This can help transform student perspectives on learning. Games invoke a range of powerful emotions, from curiosity to frustration to joy (Lazarro, 2004). Games allow players to try on new identities and roles, asking them to make in-game decisions from their new vantage points (Squire, 2006; Gee, 2008).

Gamification can motivate students to engage in the classroom, give teachers better tools to guide and reward students, and get students to bring their full selves to the pursuit of learning. It can show them the ways that education can be a joyful experience, and the blurring of boundaries between informal and formal learning can inspire students to learn in lifewide, lifelong, and lifedeep ways. The challenges, however, are also significant and need to be considered. Gamification might absorb teacher resources, or teach students that they should learn only when provided with external rewards. Teachers also need to ensure they are keeping up to date with the ever-changing amount of technology and information available.

I see gamification as a fun new way of teaching and learning! The possibilities for gamification are universal and endless. Every aspect of the human experience is a journey of sorts, meaning that there is a learning and leveling curve, a start, mid-point, and end goal…and multiple ways and strategies to reach the destination. Gamification should be thought of as helpful markers, scorecards, feedback loops and treats to guide the learner along the way, show him or her different ways to “play” and provide hints as to what may be behind choice A, B, or C that they’re about to make.

Trends Reflection: ‘What are some trends in your field? How are you preparing to address these trends?’

There are a number of pilot projects, technology startups and other developers who are playing around with gamification in healthcare. For example, The CLPNBC Jurisprudence Pilot Project. This is a recent pilot project set out to help LPNs understand the law and how it applies to nursing. The Pilot included an interactive education module that went through 7 days in the life of an LPN in multiple settings. There was also an open book exam that followed. Learners received badges for scoring grades 70% or higher that they could post to Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter as well as share with their employers. LPNs who completed the Pilot gave excellent feedback which will be used to improve the exam when it becomes a reality in 2016.

There are also a number of apps used in healthcare, these range variety from nursing assessments, medical information, fitness, an much more! CLPNBC has also just recently started the process of creating an app, very excited to be a part of this! Another example is Monster Manor, a game that engages young children with diabetes to be better at taking their insulin and to have fun while they are doing it.

We have only seen the beginning of how gamification principles will help patients improve their health. As healthcare providers, payers and innovators find successful ways to engage patients by applying gamification strategies to both children and adult patients, we will see a shift in population health that is driven by more engaged and motivated individuals. Gamification will motivate some patients to receive ongoing feedback, reminders and status updates about their progress in caring for their own health.

Web-Conference Reflection: ‘How was it? What was one thing that you learned about from your learning partner?’

I enjoyed speaking with Jenn via Skype. Its nice to connect with someone who is on  similar journey.

Jenn and I talked about our reasons for taking the PIDP, our careers, our topic of gamification and how relevant it is within both our current roles. We have very similar roles in different industries. Jenn works in the loyalty industry while I work in the health care industry.

Jenn and I will keep in touch as we continue working our way through the PIDP.

To visit Jenn’s blog please click here


Top 6 Benefits Of Gamification In eLearning

Trend 9: Gamification

Jenn’s resources:


ayogo – Monster Manor. (n.d.).

College of Licensed Practical Nurses of BC. (n.d.)