Gamification tree for research into a gamified class about social networking at the University of Washington. Jan 23
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In writing my recent article on massive open online courses, I talked with the leaders of the Big Three in the nascent industry — Coursera, edX, and Udacity — and they all stressed the importance of large-scale data collection and analysis to their plans. By meticulously tracking the actions of students, they hope to build large behavioral data bases that can then be mined for pedagogical insights. The findings, they believe, will help improve particular classes as well as bolster our general understanding of teaching and learning.
This comic is several weeks old, but I keep pulling it back up again and again. In just three small panels and in about 30 words, the strip speaks a pretty clear message of how the idea of education is shifting. The more I thought about the comic, though, the more I realized we can actually read it two different ways: The interviewee is trying desperately to use the appropriate (yet empty) buzzwords that give him the credibility he needs. But to the Boss, it’s being translated into a completely different message: I’m a high school drop-out who failed three times at starting my own business.
In a recent Wall Street Journal interview about college costs and online learning, Stanford University President John Hennessy said, "What I told my colleagues is there’s a tsunami coming. I can’t tell you exactly how it’s going to break, but my goal is to try to surf it, not to just stand there." Stanford and other elite institutions, such as Harvard and Carnegie Mellon Universities, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology are not sitting back and waiting for technology to disrupt higher education — they are out there experimenting with both delivery formats and cost. They are part of the change. This is why they are elite.
Harvard University and MIT today announced edX , a transformational new partnership in online education. Through edX, the two institutions will collaborate to enhance campus-based teaching and learning and build a global community of online learners. EdX will build on both universities’ experience in offering online instructional content. The technological platform recently established by MITx , which will serve as the foundation for the new learning system, was designed to offer online versions of MIT courses featuring video lesson segments, embedded quizzes, immediate feedback, student-ranked questions and answers, online laboratories and student-paced learning. Certificates of mastery will be available for those who are motivated and able to demonstrate their knowledge of the course material.
A while ago I came across SynchTube , a rather neat service which allows you to synchronise the playback of a Youtube videos (as well as other services). This creates a rather interesting viewing experience: one can discover and collaboratively critique videos they otherwise would never have seen before. After playing around with Synchtube, I was curious as to how it worked.
Gaming for Your Grades: The Gamification of Education at Penn State — Teaching and Learning with TechnologyBy Samantha Pearson. TLT Communications Intern Marshall McLuhan once said, “Anyone who makes a distinction between games and learning doesn’t know the first thing about either.”
If the success of sites like Gowalla , Foursquare, and other game-like forms of social media tells us much, it’s that people will do *anything* for a virtual badge. The attempt to capitalize on this behavior has been called gamification , since it borrows some of the reward structures of game mechanics and applies them to everyday tasks. While the premise behind it has been around for a while, as Wikipedia notes, it has started to get more attention from venture capitalists, developers, and researchers in 2010. While not everyone may be ready to assent to Eric Schmidt’s thesis that “Everything in the future online is going to look like a multiplayer game ,” it’s hard to deny that structuring learning experiences around frustration/reward dynamics can lead to engaged learners.
Gabe Zichermann is the chair of the upcoming Gamification Summit NYC (9/15-16, 2011), where industry leaders will gather to share knowledge and insight. Zichermann is also an author, highly rated public speaker and entrepreneur whose book, “ Gamification by Design ” (O’Reilly, 2011) is the first to look at the technical and architectural considerations for designing engagement using game concepts. Badges are among the most visible elements of gamification, the use of game-thinking and game mechanics to engage media audiences. A badge is one of many tools in an engagement design arsenal that also includes point systems, leaderboards, challenges, rewards, team play and achievement, among others. However, social media badges are often maligned as boring or weak.
Keeping You Pressing It... Forever Now, the big difference between our Skinner box hamster and a real human is that we humans can get our pellets elsewhere. If a game really was just nothing but clicking a box for random rewards, we'd eventually drop it to play some other game. Humans need a long-term goal to keep us going, and the world of addictive gaming has got this down to a science. Techniques include...
Video games , we have been led to believe, are about wasting time. It is a misunderstanding that players and game makers have railed against for 40 years. While movies and television are endlessly analysed and debated in the mainstream media, games are characterised as troubling, irresponsible or banal, the fatuous byproducts of the digital revolution. But a growing number of theorists and designers disagree. This is, after all, an entertainment medium that worldwide makes $50bn a year, a medium in which an estimated one third of UK adults indulge. An emerging school of thought, drawing on cognitive science, psychology and sociology, suggests that our growing love of video games may actually have important things to tell us about our intrinsic desires and motivations.
How are loot-based games like World of Warcraft, Torchlight, and Borderlands related to slot machines, chemical bliss, and evolution? Read on for the answer. During my early days with World of Warcraft (WoW) I remember tromping through Westfall killing crowds of Defias bandits when I was shocked by a loot drop: a rare pair of “blue” gloves that perfectly fit my class’s needs at the time. For those of you who don’t know, killing enemies in WoW gives you a random chance at one or more pieces armor, weapons, or other items called “loot” in WoW parlance. These are stratified according their text’s color: gray, white, green, blue, purple, and orange in order of increasing quality. For a level 20-something character to find a blue item on a random enemy was actually very rare, and I experienced a huge rush from it.
A new Professional Education interface has been introduced for a limited number of courses beginning Autumn 2009. What's New The new Professional Education interface offers a much larger video window as well as the ability for users to take their own notes online. The notes function offers pre-populated index points created by the course subject matter expert as well as the ability for individual users to take their own notes (which are saved to his/her profile and accessible during future viewings).
Let’s say you’re an amateur photographer who has just purchased a fancy new camera and now you want to be able to manipulate all the photos you’ve taken. You download the massive Photoshop 30-day trial from the Adobe website, then run through the install process, and then finally, launch Photoshop. And what do you see? A blank white canvas, and an overwhelming assortment of menus and panels. It’s daunting, to say the least. Many people will stop right there - not knowing what to do, not gaining any understanding of what Photoshop is capable of, and most importantly, not buying Photoshop when their 30 days is up.
Rating: 4.8/ 5 (5 votes cast) Games are infiltrating every aspect of daily life – and everyone’s now a gamer, in one form or another. Early-on “gamification” involved adding simple game mechanics like points, badges and leaderboards to websites and apps. But that’s not what makes games truly compelling. Good games take players on a journey, giving them something to learn, master and share.
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