Educational Analytics: A New Frontier for Gamification?

Academic Article


  • To determine the effects of gamification on student education, researchers implemented "Kaizen," a software-based knowledge competition, among a first-year class of undergraduate nursing students. Multiple-choice questions were released weekly or biweekly during two rounds of play. Participation was voluntary, and students could play the game using any Web-enabled device. Analyses of data generated from the game included (1) descriptive, (2) logistic regression modeling of factors associated with user attrition, (3) generalized linear mixed model for retention of knowledge, and (4) analysis of variance of final examination performance by play styles. Researchers found a statistically significant increase in the odds of a correct response (odds ratio, 1.8; 95% confidence interval, 1.0-3.4) for a round 1 question repeated in round 2, suggesting retention of knowledge. They also found statistically significant differences in final examination performance among different play styles. To maximize the benefits of gamification, researchers must use the resulting data both to power educational analytics and to inform nurse educators how to enhance student engagement, knowledge retention, and academic performance.