Week 10 679

Essential Question: How would you change the rubric for the final project to better reflect what is important in games?

Looking at the rubric and what I have been reading about gaming, I don’t think I would change anything. My current concept of gamification is trying to use games to engage your students. I use games such as Kahoot or Geography learning games. I don’t use any other games in my class and am still learning how to incorporate more games into my class. I am still not quite sure how my final project is going to be. I wanted to do something with Alaska since I am doing a unit on this. For the rubric, I am still not quite sure how I make a game, but looking at some research, I see the rubric we have is a good one.

For the rubric for Engaging and Motivating number 4, Matera (2015) says, “Game systems, on the other hand, incorporate choice and motivational mechanics, such as questing, gaining access, and preserving the open-ended process by giving agency over to the player. When we follow suit and structure these elements into our content, student motivation and knowledge acquisition increase.” By giving students control over the game they will feel connected and will experience “flow.”

According to Matera (2015), “Flow is a state of heightened focus and immersion one experiences while participating in activities such as art, play, and work.  It is where the magic of happiness and optimal performance meet. He defines flow as the creative moment when a person is completely involved in an activity.”

Content is the curriculum and required standards and would fall under number 1 on the rubric. It states this purpose clearly and correlates with multiple learning objectives and standards pertaining to course work. Choice, in the open-ended game model, is an invitation for students to explore unique, individual paths to content acquisition. Challenges are raised by the unknown twists and turns that keep the learner engaged throughout the unit (Matera, 2015).

Bartle’s theory, which was specifically designed for MMOs, or Massive Multiplayer Online games, and offers insights into gamers’ likes, dislikes, and motivations, would fall under skill scaffolding and mastery on number 6. By knowing your students and what they like and dislike, teachers can appropriately scaffold the game. Matera (2015) talks about achievement, and this category is about mastery—giving the player the opportunity to learn and practice a skill.

Every student needs feedback when working with new learning tools. Number 7 on the rubric is on encouragement and feedback. Matera (2015) said, “Our students need constructive feedback; they also need for us to hold up examples of excellence. Using status as a game mechanic reflects what happens in real life by providing a model of what is truly great and inspiring students toward action.”

Number two on the rubric talks about narrative context and storytelling. Matera, (2015) said, “Immersion is all about storytelling and designing a world that students can relate to and that allows them to explore, grow, and create.”

Cooperation includes traits like coordination, coalition building, and grouping or banding together. This would fall under number 5 which looks at students’ ability to interact with others and the game. Competition allows for players to interact with one another (Matera, 2015).

According to Landers and Callan (2011) (quoted in Wood and Reiners, 2012), “Gamification is not a game for learning purposes, but application of the motivational properties of games . . . [Gamification] layers them on top of other learning activities, integrating the human desire to communicate and share accomplishment with goal-setting to direct the attention of learners and motivate them to action”.

Millar (2013), referring to Deterding et al. (2011), recalls the “first documented use of the term “gamification” was in 2008 and was defined simply as using game design elements in non-game contexts. Since 2008, gamification as a concept has been broadened and defined by others.” In other words, gamification uses game-thinking skills and mechanics to solve problems.

According to (Kapp, 2012) as cited in (Miller, 2013), “gamification is using game-based mechanics, aesthetics, and game thinking to engage people, motivate action, promote learning and solve problems.” This would go with number 3 on our rubric: well organized, risk oriented and problem solving.

Benefits of Gamification are known to be physiological, according to (McGonigal, 2011, cited in Miller, 2013). Scientists have measured the increased release of the chemicals norepinephrine, epinephrine, and dopamine in the brain that not only bring on “good feelings,” but make us more receptive to learning (Gutierrez, 2012, cited in Miller, 2013).

“A survey done in Ireland, Online Gaming and Youth Cultural Perceptions by Killian Forde and Catherine Kenny, suggests that kids who play multi-player games online “are more likely to have a positive attitude toward people from another country: 62 percent of online gamers hold a favorable view of people from different cultures compared to 50 percent of non-gamers.”(Shapiro, 2014). This would relate to number 5 on the rubric having to do with students interacting with one another.

Looking at the rubric, I see that all the parts that I found some research on are listed. The only one that I didn’t find anything on was the last piece which is on Utility. I think I would leave the rubric as it is. I hope as I read some other blogs that they have found some reference on utilities.


Guiterrez, K. (2012). The 5 Decisive Components of Outstanding Learning Games. SHIFT eLearning Blog. Retrieved November 12, 2012, from http:// info.shiftelearning.com/blog/bid/234495/The-5- Decisive-Components-of-Outstanding-Learning- Games

Kapp, K. M. (2012). The gamification of learning and instruction: game-based methods and strategies for training and education. San Francisco, CA: Pfeiff

Matera, M. (2015). Explore like a pirate: Engage, enrich, and elevate your learners with gamification and game-inspired course design. Dave Burgess Consulting, Inc. Kindle Edition.

McGonigal, J. (2011). Reality is broken: why games make us better and how they can change the world. New York: Penguin Press.

Miller, C. (2013). The gamification of education. Developments in Business Simulation and Experiential Learning, 40.

Shapiro, J. (2014). Benefits of Gaming: What Research Shows. Retrieved November 09, 2016, from https://ww2.kqed.org/mindshift/2014/06/13/benefits-of-gaming-what-research-shows/education: Extending active learning.

Wood, L. C., & Reiners, T. (2012). Gamification in logistics and supply chain




2 thoughts on “Week 10 679

  1. I hope you had a chance to view that YouTube video that Lee made in 2014 interviewing Alice Keeler, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WJ_UKW_AFOU. I thought it really help me. Maybe it’s because Alice was a high school math teacher before her current job as teacher preparation instructor at a university. She uses less “gamification” terms in her explanation of gamification of a class, than Matera. Don’t let the title of the video fool you, (Getting Started with Games Based Learning), she details what gamification is and what she thinks is important to gamify a class/lesson/unit. She describes what “elements” of games make it motivating to play a game, and the idea is to try to duplicate that in the class. I really got overwhelmed by reading Matera’s text. This 30 minute video made way more sense to me. Good luck with your plan!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Theresa,

    I really love the research you shared that gaming increases different hormones released in the brain and that those can have a positive impact on how we learn. This would be a great argument for having games in schools! I also find it very interesting that playing online multiplayer games can help people to have a more positive attitude about people from other countries. I think it would be very interesting to try and incorporate some sort of international connection with gamifying our classrooms. My school is an International Baccalaureate (IB) school, so that would fit nicely with the philosophy of the IB program.

    Great post this week!

    Liked by 1 person

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