Gamified Online Training: 8 Misconceptions eLearning Pros Should Know

Gamification has become a popular strategy to engage learners in online training environments. By incorporating game-like elements into educational content, eLearning professionals aim to boost motivation and improve retention rates. Despite its widespread adoption, there are several misconceptions about gamified online training that eLearning professionals should be aware of.

1. Gamification is just about adding points, badges, and leaderboards

Many believe that simply adding points, badges, and leaderboards is enough to gamify an eLearning course. However, true gamification involves creating meaningful challenges, providing instantaneous feedback, and crafting a narrative that resonates with the learner’s journey.

2. Gamification makes the learning process easy

Another misconception is that gamification simplifies learning. While it does make learning more engaging, it doesn’t necessarily reduce the intellectual challenge. Instead, it encourages learners to overcome difficulties by persisting and playing through failures.

3. Only young learners enjoy gamified training

eLearning professionals often assume that gamification appeals only to younger demographics who are familiar with video games. However, gamified training can be effective for learners of all ages if it’s designed to be inclusive and respects the varied interests of a diverse audience.

4. All you need is a good game designer

Creating engaging games is important, but eLearning professionals also need instructional designers who understand how to integrate game mechanics with educational content in a way that achieves learning objectives.

5. Gamification undermines the seriousness of learning

There’s a concern that introducing fun elements into training may detract from its seriousness or complexity. On the contrary, well-designed gamification respects the subject matter and uses fun to enhance, not trivialize, the learning experience.

6. More game elements mean better results

It’s not the quantity but the quality and relevance of game elements that determine their success in eLearning platforms. Overloading a course with unnecessary gamified features can distract from the core educational message.

7. Gamification works for all types of content

While many topics lend themselves well to gamification, some areas of knowledge might not benefit as much from this approach. Understanding when and how to use gamification appropriately is key to its success in eLearning curricula.

8. Gamified training isn’t measurable

Some critics say it’s difficult to measure the effectiveness of gamified learning objectively. However, when combined with data analytics techniques and clear KPIs (Key Performance Indicators), gamified online training can indeed produce measurable outcomes that illustrate learner progress and engagement.

By debunking these misconceptions, eLearning professionals can create more effective and immersive gamified training experiences that truly benefit their learners.