Learnification is the future of gamification
Gamification and Learnification
At Fenturi, we proudly stand behind the power of embedding learning elements within a game. From our industry experience and personal hobbies, we understand the opportunity that games have to capture interest.
However, we’ve found that within the L&D industry, gamification can be implemented into learning solutions without much benefit to the course and most importantly to the learner’s experience. So in a time of reflection, we had to ask ourselves is there a problem with the way that games are used within the e-learning industry?
Gabe Zichermann defined gamification as “leveraging game mechanics in business, education, and other non-entertainment platforms to increase user engagement in a process called gamification”. Alongside this definition, it’s also important to know that gamification has “invaded” areas such as productivity, employee motivation, financial monitoring, task management, professional training, fitness and education.
Gamification is everywhere and simply put, gamification is the application of game into non-game contexts. This statement is factually correct, however, we believe this is where the problem arises. Instead of the gamified learning which integrates game mechanic into the process of learning, we believe that when the brief fits the learning itself should be gamified.
As a result, creating the need for the term learnification or learnified gaming. We believe that learnification will be the future combination of gaming and learning. Whilst gamified elements will stay as just that.
The difference between the two
Gamification (of learning)
Gamification is applying gameplay elements to a learning experience. The games often materialise as small primitive click and drag games sprinkled within online learning courses. It’s fair to say they are almost always two dimensional, with scoring and feedback elements informed by 1990’s ‘edutainment’ games or mobile 2D touch games.
Learnification (of gaming)
On the flip side, learnification is embedding learning elements within a game. It uses branching narratives and emergent gameplay within a ‘game first’ environment to engage and educate a user.
The construction of a 3D or 2D environment with modern gameplay mechanics such as exploration, interaction and freedom of movement creates a fully immersive experience. Which allows the user to explore and seek out learning at their own pace and in the order they choose.
This modern user experience takes its inspiration from the most widely consumed entertainment medium on the planet, gaming.
Whilst the gamification techniques can work and will be effective within most briefs, we believe that the learnification mindset creates a better learning experience for the user. By putting the user experience first we believe that learnification will become the future of games in learning.
To clarify this is not to say that gamification doesn’t have its uses, it is a great tool to keep the user engaged and motivated. However, when comparing the two, the implementation of learnification will always create a richer and more immersive learning experience than gamification because of the nature they are designed.