Game-based custom e-learning can offer you a variety of benefits. But, what does it exactly mean? Game-based e-learning integrates online games into the learning process to help teach a specific skill or achieve a learning objective in an engaging way. All e-learning games, like any game in general, typically have rules and specific objectives because of which learners run the risk of “losing” when they participate. The inherent desire to “win” keeps a learner engaged and pushes them to do better. This strategy has content specially designed to fit into the confines of the game.
Game-based learning involves individuals in the learning process without boring them. Games are a fun and interactive way to transfer knowledge; by using simple rewards or point systems, you can keep the learner motivated throughout the course duration.
Conventional methods of learning just display information. No matter how elaborately it is conveyed, it is ultimately at the discretion of the learner to grasp. Since users are directly involved in playing games, their attention is 100% captured by the course content. Proactive involvement means that knowledge retention and recollection increases exponentially.
So how to make the most of game-based learning? Below are some tips that’ll help you take your e-learning course to the next level by using games:
Design Games Around Your Audience
Games can be of many types, such as puzzles, adventure games, strategy games, etc. Before you can set out to design a game, you need to consider your target audience. Analyze your audience and conceptualize a game most suitable to achieve their learning objectives. For e.g. role-play games appeal to a sales audience, while strategy games can effectively achieve objectives of a management training course.
Define Strong Learning Points
Beneath all the fun and excitement of games lie its basic function of imparting knowledge. In the quest of designing a captivating game, you shouldn’t lose sight of topic that it should convey. Clearly define learning points in the game that will give the learner a practical context to use the knowledge that they are gaining. Consider the environment that the learner is going to utilize the knowledge in, and try to replicate it in the game for maximum learning recollection. Ideally, each interaction in the game should convert to a small bite of learning.
Use Proven Instructional Design Strategies
Like everything else in the e-learning sphere, creating gaming content should also be based on proven instructional design principles. Like, use of graphics instead of only text, to let learners self-assess their knowledge instead of serving them the answers and using scenarios, relatable to the learner/gamer. A game designed with sound instructional design principles, makes it reliable and assures that it conveys the learning objectives effectively. They also keep the interactivity of the game alive and help learners make the most of it.
Create an Immersive Gaming Environment
The storyline and background of the game is important. If the scenario tries to simulate a working environment, then the gamer should feel like he/she is part of the game. The game should be challenging too. At the beginning of the game, keep the difficulty simple, but once the learner gets a hang of it, the difficulty should be increased. If the gamer does not find the game challenging, he will not be engaged and you will lose the learner and thus your learning outcomes are diluted.
Game-based custom e-learning can play a pivotal role in striking a balance with your audience, to get the real value from the course, by providing the right amount of motivation and inspiration. The trick is choosing the right approach and designing the right game. Implement game-based learning in your strategy and watch it play out like never before.