Gamify the Classroom to Help Students Focus on Skills Rather Than Grades


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Many students have turned the focus of their education onto grades rather than actual skills

Students often ask teachers “What do I need to do to get an A”, but educators would rather students focus on mastery of fundamental skills rather than secondary outcomes like grades. However, since most of the feedback that students receive on their performance comes in the form of grades this is a difficult shift to make.

Solution: Use game theory and gaming software to refocus efforts of students on mastery of skills.

Use game software such as Gradecraft, 3DGameLab, Classcraft, and TheVirtualLocker to turn learning tasks into “quests” and allow students to earn experience points for time spent on task and badges for skill mastery rather than grades. Make it okay to fail by allowing students to repeat quests until they have mastered the skill. Ensure students have mastered basic skills before leveling up to more difficult tasks. Finally let students modify quests to match their interests and needs.

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Category: Education


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Article by: McKay Barrow

McKay is researching leading practices in second language acquisition. He has M.A. degrees in Anthropology and Second Language Studies from UC Santa Barbara and the University of Indiana. On a good day he'll tell you about living through the 2009 Urumqi riots in Xinjiang.
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