How Gamification Uncovers Nuance In The Learning Process by Terry Heick Gamification is simply the application of “game” mechanics to non-game entities.
The current issue around the idea is less about definition, and more about tone. Reducing the process of “gamification” to something whimsical, silly, or juvenile represents a fundamental misunderstanding of gamification as a process.
For years, classrooms have been gamified. Letter grades are indeed first subjective evaluations of knowledge proficiency, but once they are passed to the hands of the students, they become game components, passed around as proof of the completion of some task, or the achievement of some desired goal (mastering a standard, fulfilling the requirements of an assignment, etc. Here, rubrics become instructions to task completion.
Once game dynamics are in place the tribe is changed. Adoption of game mechanics to explain social interaction is a clear signal of a successful application of game theory to students or customers.
Does anyone DOUBT the impact of a well tuned game? "Well tuned" in this context means easy to play and understand, sufficiently motivating and fun to obscure or marginalize a "rebel" minority.