Over the past few years, we have covered a variety of ways you can use simple gamification methods to enhance learning. When used correctly, game methods in elearning can go a long way in reinforcing the content.
But gamification isn’t for everyone, and in some cases it isn’t necessary (perhaps even detrimental).
Looking at gamification from another perspective, let’s consider why you should not worry about gamification.
Two Reasons to Avoid Using Gamification in Your Courses
First, and probably the most obvious, is that too many gaming elements can just be distracting. Rather than reinforce the topic, the gamification just becomes added noise that the learner has to comprehend while potentially missing critical information.
If there is a badge being awarded for simple actions taken within the course, the importance of the badge diminishes altogether. The badge and point notifications may become distracting.
Some courses are rather important to an organization’s key procedures. The last thing that you want is employees missing any changes related to their day-to-day activities as a result of distracting gaming elements.
Another reasons why gamification should not be used in your course is because not every culture is conducive to a gaming methodology. If a program is going to be implemented, it needs to be eased into the culture of the organization.
Forcing games and points onto employees or students may just be a waste of time, especially if they don’t understand the bigger context of these items. You will end up wasting time (and money) trying to force a pro-gaming environment.
Before attempting to implement any gaming program into your online courses, you should consider the audience, current culture, organizational goals, resources, and course content. In some cases, it just doesn’t make sense to pursue.