Chalmers

Case Study:

Gamification specifically designed for educational purposes and student empowerment through learning is based on Game design, intuitive design and could be proved helpful for students in order to reach higher grades.

This new method of transferring knowledge could be used as a new component in a learning process.

Metrics:

The gamification of the course “Automation of production systems” at Chalmers has led to impressive improvements.

The number of students that completed the course increased by 15 per cent and the number of students that reached the top grade, 5 out of 5, increased by a staggering 284 per cent in
2018-2019, in comparison to the period of 2017-2018.

Increase of Course Completion
amongst students

Course completed with highest grade!

Background

While studying demanding courses and programmes, it can be hard to understand what is expected to reach top results.

In addition to this, the students in a programme often take multiple challenging courses simultaneously.

This can be overwhelming.

By using game design elements in the learning environment, the students are given immediate feedback on their progression and are shown a clearer path to completion and higher grades.

Challenges

In today’s world, with much more disrupting elements than ever, it is more and more difficult for students in courses to be disciplined, to keep on track in their study path and to reach an understanding of the course content.

The student drop-off rate in courses is, in general, getting higher and the aim of the project is to increase the graduation rate of Chalmers students.

The pilot product was used in the testing of how a gamified application can increase the Chalmers students’ understanding of the course content. The testing was based on the following objectives:

1. Whether or not the gamified course material makes more students pass through the course at the set course time

2.  If the introduction of gamification elements increases results for the course participants compared to previous batches.

Insights

Automation of production systems syllabus 2018/2019 was, for the first time, designed with gamification elements, in order to reward sub-targets and create a more personalised experience for the ones attending the course. At the start of the course, the presence of the gamification elements is designed to be minimal, but as students progress more of the elements become evident.

Scenario

While studying demanding courses and programmes, it can be hard to understand what is expected to reach top results. In addition to this, the students in a program often take multiple challenging courses simultaneously, which can be become more manageable by adding game design elements in the learning environment. This way, students are given immediate feedback on their progression and are shown a clearer path to completion and higher grades.

Solution: GWEN Widget

At the start of the course, the Gamification elements are minimal, but as students progress more of the elements become evident. There are multiple engaging Gamification modules implemented on Canvas. Insert Coin’s Levels and Missions module is one of the most prominent modules in this case, while the Shop and Achievements module becomes more evident later on in the course when the students have accumulated enough points and rewards to use it:

Levels

Lets the students reach new levels and connect a part of themselves with the course and with their avatar. They are presented with an endless loop of activities, no threshold for getting started and direct feedback. Experience, the currency used in order to reach higher levels, is rewarded in the Levels module when various actions, linked to the demands of the syllabus, are performed.

Missions

Helping the students to work their way through a series of objectives, consisting of desired actions and deliverables. The module provides clear goals.

Shop

Enables real value items as a reward for progressing through the course, connecting effort to real value or, in this case, enabling students to use the module to obtain extended deadlines.

Achievements

This module is used to reward ”one-time-actions” which will be displayed on their profile or Avatar page, resulting in a clear and explanatory approach of how and when these achievements can be earned as well as what the reward will be for completing them.

Testimonials:

“A great reason for this high number of good grades and an increase in completion is the module based and game-based environment that was designed for this course.” 

Åsa Fasth Berglund

Professor in Smart Automation in Production Systems

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