The Science And The Benefits of Gamification In eLearning

Gamification In eLearning: Science and Benefits
Summary: In this article I'll explore how the brain responds to gamification in eLearning, and I will also highlight some of the most notable benefits of using gamification in your eLearning courses.

Gamification In eLearning: Science and Benefits

Gamification in eLearning has become increasingly popular since it offers a wide range of advantages for learners and can help to make the overall eLearning experience not only more enjoyable, but more effective too. As a matter of fact, there is actually an exact science behind why gamification in eLearning is so successful. Regardless of your audience or subject matter, gamification in eLearning can help you to create exciting, educational, and entertaining eLearning courses.

How Science Supports Gamification In eLearning

When we participate in activities that stimulate our bodies or minds, such as exercising, our body releases a hormone known as endorphins. The same effect can be achieved by playing eLearning games that challenge learners or give them the chance to achieve a particular reward, even if that reward is something as simple as moving onto the next level.When these endorphins are released, the learners not only have more fun during the eLearning process, but they actually retain more information. Endorphins also bring on feelings of calm and well being. It's also important to note that endorphins are neurotransmitters, which means that they have the ability to send signals between neurons. And this is why gamification in eLearning is so beneficial for learners. It creates a sense of excitement within the learners because they feel that they are accomplishing something, thanks to the endorphins that are being released. This excitement leads to a boost in motivation and makes the experience more powerful and memorable.

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The Top 5 Benefits of Gamification In eLearning

Below you'll find just a few of the top benefits that are commonly associated with gamification in eLearning.

  1. Increases learner engagement.
    Gamification in eLearning can help eLearning professionals to create experiences that fully engage their learners. Gamification hold their attention and motivate them, given that they are striving to reach a goal. When learners feel positive about their learning process and know that they are going to be rewarded in some way for their efforts, then they stop becoming passive observers and turn into active participants. By doing so, they are able to effectively absorb the information and commit it to the long-term memory, because the knowledge itself is linked to the favorable experience you've provided through gamification in eLearning.
  2. Makes eLearning fun and interactive.
    While you may have a variety of learning goals and objectives you want to achieve throughout the eLearning course, none of these outcomes can be effectively achieved if the learners aren't really excited about what they are learning. Gamification in eLearning makes learning not only informative, but fun and exciting too. It also adds an interactive element to your eLearning courses. This creates the feeling of immersion, which offers learners the opportunity to feel as though they are an integral part of the overall learning process.
  3. Improves knowledge absorption and retention.
    Whether you are designing an eLearning course that is centered around compliance training or one that focuses on eleventh grade biology, the goal is always the same; to instill knowledge within your learners. Even more importantly, learners must be able to access this knowledge when they actually need it in the real world. Gamification in eLearning can improve knowledge absorption and boost knowledge retention by blending endorphins and the awareness of real world benefits.
  4. Gives learners the opportunity to see real world applications.
    Gamification in eLearning allows learners to see the real world applications and benefits of the subject matter. They are able to get a first-hand look at how their choices within the game result in consequences or rewards. If they do not fare well, then they aren't rewarded for their actions or aren't able to progress to the next level. In essence, you give them the chance to explore a topic at length and get a firm grasp on how they might be able to apply that information outside of the virtual classroom, while they are in a fun and risk-free environment. Then, when they do venture out into the world, they will have the power to put that knowledge to good use in professional or personal settings.
  5. Enhances the overall learning experience for all age groups.
    Regardless of whether you are designing eLearning deliverables for adult learners or for K-12 students, gamification in eLearning can help to make the overall eLearning experience much more effective. If learners are having fun and are getting excited about learning, then they are more likely to actually acquire information. Even a subject matter that may be dull or complicated can be absorbed more easily, because learners are actually enjoying the process and are actively participating. In fact, you can even integrate gamification into your eLearning courses in such a way that learners won't even know they are acquiring new information. Knowledge absorption simply becomes a byproduct, as they are focused on achieving rewards and accomplishments within the eLearning course. This is often when real learning takes place, however, as the boundaries that often hinder the learning process are removed. For example, learners don't have to deal with the stress that can be associated with learning, because they are too busy having fun and enjoying the eLearning course.

Now that you've learned about the scientific evidence in favor of gamification in eLearning, as well as the many benefits it can offer, why not try integrating gamification into your next eLearning deliverable? If you're looking for a way to transform your eLearning course into a dynamic and rich learning experience for your learners, then gamification in eLearning may be the ideal solution.

Would you be interested in the most effective uses of Gamification in Learning? In the Free eBook How Gamification Reshapes Learning you will find useful gamification tips provided by 23 Gamification experts!

Last but not least, I highly encourage you to check the Infographic 30 Facts About Gamification in eLearning.

30 Facts About Gamification in eLearning Infographic
Find more education infographics on e-Learning Infographics

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