In a discussion of Gamification design for a classroom, a faculty member wanted to design a level system/point scale. In the discussion they wanted to have a point system for grades, but also non-point based incentives. The reason for the non-point incentives were to help encourage students to keep going in the class even if they met the threshold for success in the class already. Leveling was great, but if students got enough points in the class to reach level 6, which was a C, then why would someone necessarily always want to go to level 7? Through this discussion they thought of a wonderful idea gained from his experience as a Game Master in Role Playing Games.
Multi-classing: This is the idea that students can gain levels in different areas and aspects. In Dungeons in Dragons instead of being a Level 5 wizard, you could be a level 3 wizard and a level 2 fighter. This creates a broad well rounded character that is proficient in different areas. The faculty member decided they wanted to see this in their English class.
They created multiple classes that students could level in that reflected the different skills inside the classroom. They could be writers, proof-readers, bibliographers, researchers, readers, and so on. Students who succeeded in assignments in different talent areas would gain points for levels in that class. So if they were a great writer and a decent researcher they could be a level 4 writer/level 2 researcher. Also, to get higher grades like B’s and A’s student shad to multi-class and become well rounded in their knowledge.
This simple change made me realize the potential of this for a student in a classroom. Students now can visually see how they improve in their learning of the important skills of a class. As they rise in levels in each aspect their confidence in that skill rises, and they know they are masters of certain areas. A student doesn’t have to master all to succeed, but they can if they want, and they are incentivized to become masters in as many skill areas as possible. At the end students leave the class knowing exactly what areas they learned and are masters of, and what areas of study they need to improve through the levels. When this class starts next year I will provide updates on how this helped student success. If you have your own stories of gamification successes using this method, or a similar method please share.