Using Gamification to Enhance Self-directed, Open Learning in Higher Education


Mark Featherstone Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, United Kingdom Abstract: This paper reviews the literature on games based learning in the fields of psychology, education and video games, with a focus on the disparity of opinion regarding intrinsic motivation. Work in the field of education has shown that a state of optimal learning (flow) can be encouraged and sustained using a variety of reward based techniques. In contrast, psychological studies have shown that intrinsic motivation is inhibited by external reward techniques. The author’s experience as a professional game developer is that there are large commercial benefits and efficacy in a range of reward-based game mechanics. By identifying game design features that could cross over into education this paper will outline a range of techniques that could be implemented using a mobile device platform for use in the classroom within a higher education setting. An experiment is proposed to investigate the impact of this approach to games based learning and a software design is presented to support the experiment’s aims. A meta-game is described that links into normal student activities, gamifying them to enhance the student experience.

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@inproceedings{Featherstone2016UsingGT, title={Using Gamification to Enhance Self-directed, Open Learning in Higher Education}, author={Mark S. Featherstone}, year={2016} }