Knewton, an EduTech company in NYC, posted an infographic today about the gamification of education. In case you haven’t heard the term, gamification is defined as “the use of game design elements in non-game contexts.” You may have come across it before, gamification of education or gamified learning is not a new concept – no one taught me to type faster than Mavis Beacon (Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing, 1987). You may have learned world geography with Carmen Sandiego or even learned to prioritize tasks with Diner Dash. Knewton’s infographic, based on information from gamification.org and MIT Education Arcade, presents the short history of gamified learning and it’s clear to see that gaming has gotten much more serious (WoW) and available on many more platforms (mobile, PC, etc.) Games have captured our attention much better than traditional learning formats; gamification can help inform course design and curriculum development!
Nay-sayers might argue that learning and gaming fun should be kept separate, but the need is clear, 1.2 million students in the United States fail to graduate from high school every year. “What elements of gaming can we harness for educational purposes?”