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What Happened to Cyberpunk?

What Happened to Cyberpunk? | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
Cyberpunk writing was “not outside us, but next to us. Under our skin; often, inside our minds.”
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In a sense, it’s a generational thing. In 1980, the writer Bruce Bethke – whose short story “Cyberpunk” inadvertently christened the genre – was working at a Radio Shack in Wisconsin, selling TRS-80 microcomputers. One day, a group of teenagers waltzed in and hacked one of the store machines, and Bethke, who’d imagined himself a tech wiz, couldn’t figure out how to fix it. It was after this incident that he realized something: these teenaged hackers were going to sire kids of their own someday, and those kids were going to have a technological fluency that he could only guess at. They, he writes, were going to truly “speak computer.” And, like teenagers of any era, they were going to be selfish, morally vacuous, and cynical.


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Avatar Creators - Web tools for kids

Avatar Creators - Web tools for kids | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
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From monsters to talking avatars, a range of avatar makers to choose from. 

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Sandra Carswell's curator insight, March 17, 9:04 PM

Always looking for good avatar creators for students to use on their edmodo accounts. 

Profesor Mills's comment, March 20, 3:33 PM
Most of these link to advertisements for commercial brands or websites that no longer exist
john dimitriou's curator insight, March 26, 3:58 AM

Asking students to create or identify themselves through an avatar to explain how something works or how it is made allows students to package information in a way that it helps them to unpack knowledge. Becoming personally and emotionally invested helps to engage learners. They take ownership.

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Gamification is about Design, Not Technology

Gamification is about Design, Not Technology | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
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niftyjock's curator insight, July 15, 3:18 PM

I completely agree 

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Report Card: Gamification in Learning (What Works?)

Report Card: Gamification in Learning (What Works?) | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
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Gamification in ACTION

Gamification in ACTION | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
Karl Kapp’s inspiring and thought-provoking interview with Learnnovators left us wondering about the amazing possibilities of gamification and game-based learning. In addition, this also made us think about the other areas of our lives where gamification and game mechanics are making an impact. We set out on a journey to explore and see how the community and the industry are presently perceiving and practicing these methodologies in learning as well as in other situations. Read on…
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Game Over: 4 Gamification Mistakes

Game Over: 4 Gamification Mistakes | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
Gamification is a popular trend for e-Learning right now. But if your learners are disinterested, unfocused or not learning anything valuable - it may be GAME OVER for your e-Learning course. 
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Digital Gaming and Language Learning: Autonomy and Community

Digital Gaming and Language Learning: Autonomy and Community | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
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Abstract:


The relationship between digital game play and second language (L2) learning is a particularly tricky issue in East Asia. Though there is an emerging presence of Chinese online games, many more young people are playing the English- or Japanese-language versions of the most popular commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) video games. In other words, most Chinese gamers are playing L2 digital games in their leisure time. Informed by research on out-of-class L2 learning, this paper discusses findings from an exploratory study investigating L2 gaming and learning practices in young people’s everyday lives. Drawing on rich data from gaming sessions, stimulated recall, focus group discussion, individual interviews and online discussion forums, this paper argues that gamers exercise autonomy by managing their gameplay both as leisure and learning practices in different dimensions (location, formality, locus of control, pedagogy and trajectory). At the same time, gameplay-as-learning practices are supported by wider communities of digital gamers who take on roles as language teachers and advisers. The paper suggests that activities in these dimensions mediated learning autonomously and from community, and discusses the research and pedagogical implications for L2 gaming and learning.

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Looking at a Gamified LMS Platform

Looking at a Gamified LMS Platform | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
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niftyjock's curator insight, May 24, 6:48 PM

I Like the idea of gamification but, I would lie to see some empirical evidence that gamification increases learning!

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Should You Gamify eLearning?

Should You Gamify eLearning? | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
Corporate America today utilizes online learning and computer-based courses for employee training with great regularity. It is flexible and fast, giving em
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Pros
  • Game-playing helps develop positive mental attitudes toward learning dry subjects.
  • Portability is great; employees can often play on their desktop, laptop, or portable devices.
  • Alleviation of boredom and tediousness in mastering subject matter is a plus.
  • Gamification can help employees focus on the material and absorb more of the information.
  • Role-playing games can guide employees to advanced academic understanding.
  • eLearning increases the ability to learn independently.
  • Gaming-based learning shifts the focus to the process rather than the outcome or goal of the course.
  • Games that help confront fears and anger have been shown to be a safe alternative for releasing emotions.
  • Games like online chess make students slow down, concentrate, and think moves ahead – definitely good skills for employees to master.
  • Music and movement augment the learning experience in a positive way.
  • Game mechanics can teach critical thinking and interpretation skills that are crucial to learning.
  • Replayability gives people permission to fail, which encourages exploration and discovery.
Cons
  • eLearning has to be monitored to be successful; it is important to classify what is learned from the games played.
  • There is still research that needs to be done to figure out how and why gamification works and why it is effective.
  • Extrinsic rewards can lose their value over time, and actually lessen the motivation of players.
  • Some games do not use the experience to properly motivate people to really learn and be engaged.
  • Game-playing can result in a lack of strategic connection. The challenge is keeping it relevant to the tasks at hand.
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Malachy Scullion's curator insight, May 8, 5:07 AM

Are you gamifying your classroom?

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How Games Lead Kids to the Good Stuff: Understanding Context

How Games Lead Kids to the Good Stuff: Understanding Context | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
With game-based learning students learn how to solve the problems in context. They understand how the equations they are solving fit into the world. The question, “Why do I need to know this?” is rendered obsolete. It is more than just subject matter, more than just content. There’s context. Students understand how integer partitions work within a system.
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Celia Molares's curator insight, May 18, 2:40 AM

El aprendizaje basado en el juego permite al estudiante experimentar, entender y resolver problemas. 

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The Gamification of Education Infographic

The Gamification of Education Infographic | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
Gamification has tremendous potential in the education space. How can we use it to deliver truly meaningful experiences to students?
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Playing with the Definition of “Game Thinking” for Instructional Designers «

Playing with the Definition of “Game Thinking” for Instructional Designers « | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
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"Game thinking, from an instructional game designer’s perspective, is approaching the design of a learning event from the perspective of learner actions and activities that lead to a meaningful outcome while navigating some sort of risk. Meaningful outcomes involve overcoming challenges and solving problems through thoughtful decision making by the learner. It also involves risk; games include the risk of giving up territory, of having to start over , or of not successfully completing the endeavor. With nothing at risk, there is little to gain."
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The Irony of Gamification

The Irony of Gamification | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
This appeared in issue 3 of the British Council's IED magazinePerhaps I’m
living in an echo chamber. On examination, my PLN does appear to be
worryingly comprised of mostly like-minded peers and my RSS aggregators do
a pretty decent job of trimming the fat by carefully curating the news and
articles I encounter. Even taking that into consideration, over time
I found myself secretly hoping that gamifiction was just a faddish
neologism, but if it is, it’s proving to be an extremely stubborn one.

Don’t get me wrong, I love games. Board games, word games, card games,
pervasive games, digital games — I study them, play them and have even
designed a few. I also frequently use games in my classes. But we’re not
talking about games here, we’re talking about “ifying” something that is
not a game. To “ify” something (apologies to any hardline grammarians out
there for contorting a suffix into a verb), is, according to the Cambridge
online dictionary, “to cause an increase in the stated quality”. So, to
gamify is to make a non-game more game-like by suffusing it with game-like
qualities.

It’s not hard to understand why one would want to do this, especially in
the field of education. Games are fun, intensely engaging and highly
motivational systems. They can also be extremely complex, challenging and
rewarding experiences. Modern video games can often take tens or even
hundreds of hours to complete. They involve actively acquiring new skills,
making difficult choices, digesting huge amounts of contextually situated
information and repeatedly applying critical problem solving skills to
overcome what may at first appear to be overwhelming obstacles. Gamers do
all of these things routinely, voluntarily and enthusiastically. Many games
are also extremely collaborative and social, with communities of practice
spanning thousands of blogs, wikis and forums produced by and dedicated to
players who want to share what they know and learn from others. What
teacher wouldn’t want to imbue their lessons with more of these
qualities? This is the siren-song appeal of gamification.

As with most things though, the proof of the pudding is to be found in the
eating. And, to risk stretching the metaphor to breaking point, with the
pudding of gamification, the problem lies in the ingredients used, the
cooking technique applied and the chef on duty. Examples of gamified
systems can be found all around us. Department stores and supermarkets have
long co-opted the psychological power of the points and rewards game
mechanic to promote customer loyalty and increased sales. Fast food
restaurants routinely offer tokens and scratch cards which can be traded
for fries and burgers and more recently location-based social networks like
Gowalla and Fouresquare, which allow you to “check in” to specific
real-world locations and earn virtual badges, have been used as promotional
tools by shops and restaurants who offer discounts to frequent visitors.
Arookoo, and many similar mobile apps, even turn the act of walking into a
game by rewarding users with points and badges for the distance they cover
while being tracked by the GPS in their phones.

Schools and universities all over the world are jumping on the gamification
wagon to seemingly great effect. Back in 2010 I heard a radio interview
with the headmaster of a school here in northern Portugal. They were in the
second term of a trial which involved dishing out points, badges and
rewards to their students for everything from good behaviour to test
results and attendance. Classes were pitted against each other to
accumulate the highest number of points and win rewards such as trips and
prizes. This encouraged students to put pressure on anyone who appeared to
be slacking, so as to boost the class average. The headmaster was enthused
by the project and cited bucket loads of statistics revealing attendance
improvements and test scores.

Another apparent “win” for gamification was the focus of an article in
Forbes magazine earlier this year. The article, entitled “Education Meets
World Of Warcraft” describes a polytechnic teacher who begins the academic
year by informing his students that they all have an F, quickly calming the
ensuing panic by adding that they can “level up”. According to the article
he then, “...divides the class into small groups called “guilds,” which
complete quests such as taking tests and making presentations to earn
points and then advance to a new level. At the end of the course, he
determines the grade by points and skill level.” Like the Portuguese
experiment, gamifying the course led to significant performance
improvements: “Ever since I turned education into a game”, he says, “the
average letter grade in the class went from a C to a B, and attendance is
almost perfect.”

The thing is, although many games use such points and rewards systems to
track player progress, they are only the most superficial components and
not fundamental to the experience of what a game is. They are but one of
many ways of providing feedback to players about how close they are to
achieving their goals. Of course, feedback is essential to learning as it
helps you to keep on track and enables you to try out new strategies and
see how well they work. Games of all kinds are great at providing
immediate, frequent and intense feedback in multiple ways which are not
always possible or practical in traditional learning environments. This
rich feedback may be in the form of audio, video, haptics, social
interaction or narrative progression among others. Furthermore, because the
feedback is usually immediate, it is strongly situated in the context in
which the action took place. Games are complex systems, a point which seems
to currently be ignored by the majority of gamification proponents.

With most gamified systems and processes the feedback is provided in the
form of a simple, superficial layer of points, badges and other rewards
that are not contextually integral to the activity itself. In the field of
education, this is compounded by the fact that we have already introduced
such a feedback layer in the form of test scores, grade averages and
certificates, so in essence we are rewarding the rewards, much in the same
way as parents who give material gifts in return for As. I’ll leave that
argument for another time.

Over the short term this approach may lead to measurable outcomes as
students make an effort to perform better in order to achieve better
results, or more attendance points. The unintended consequence of this is
that it frames learning as being an action of accumulation, about gaining
or having either material or virtual capital. The rhetoric is that of the
age-old carrot and stick metaphor in which learners are conditioned to act
and behave in certain ways in order to gain certain rewards. This is the
classical operant conditioning model which externalizes motivation through
the promise of extrinsic reward.

Students want to “have a degree” and “get a good grade” rather than be
 learners and it then becomes logical for them to ask questions such as
“will this be in the test?”, in order to avoid wasting effort on unrewarded
content (for more on the whole having vs being debate I highly recommend
Fromm’s “To Have or to Be”). This attitude is precisely the opposite of
what we should be encouraging if we want to produce a society of
self-motivated and reflective lifelong learners. To make matters worse,
although renaming classes as “guilds”, grades as “levels” and better marks
as “leveling up” may manipulate learners into modifying their behaviour, it
does so by reinforcing and perpetuating an anachronistic industrial model
of education through concealment and thwarting intrinsic motivation.
Prepackaged web 2.0 services like Class Dojo promise to enable teachers to:

"Create an engaging classroom in minutes” by providing “instant visual
notifications for your students (‘Well done Josh! +1 for teamwork!’) with a
whole host of game mechanics: think level-ups, badges and achievements to
unlock, in-classroom games, avatars and leaderboards.

Similar gamification platforms are popping up every day, their brightly
coloured, cutesy vector graphics thinly concealing the underlying rhetoric
of increasing reward dependency and undermining intrinsic motivation.

Dewey expresses this nicely in chapter seven of The School and Society:

If there is not an inherent attracting power in the material, then
(according to his temperament and training, and the precedents and
expectations of the school) the teacher will either attempt to surround the
material with foreign attractiveness, making a bid or offering a bribe for
attention by "making the lesson interesting"; or else will resort to
counterirritants (low marks, threats of non-promotion, staying after
school, personal disapprobation, expressed in a great variety of ways,
naggings, continuous calling upon the child to "pay attention," etc.); or,
probably, will use some of both means.

...But the attention thus gained is never more than partial, or divided;
and it always remains dependent upon something external —hence, when the
attraction ceases or the pressure lets up, there is little or no gain in
inner or intellectual control.

Such instrumental learning may be easy to implement and convenient for
administrators to tidily quantify into grades and statistics, but we need
real change in education, not merely a shift in perceptions. Games can help
us achieve this if we respect and embrace their complexity and refrain from
stripping them of their intrinsic power to motivate and engage learners on
multiple levels. Educators can and should use games and game mechanics in
different contexts, but they should do so reflectively and unravel their
underlying rhetoric. Games can serve as excellent examples of how active
and stimulating learning environments can be created for the purpose of
learning, as good games already embody many of the characteristics of good
learning principles (see James Gee for more on this and John Hunter’s World
Peace Game for a real-world example of a gamified learning program that
embraces the rich complexity of game dynamics).

So the problem of gamification is, somewhat ironically, that in the
majority of its current implementations, it is not game-like enough. By
overlooking the depth and breadth of the potential games have to empower
and motivate learners and create meaningful experiences, and instead
employing only a myopic and superficial game mechanic,
popular gamification is doing a disservice to both learners and educators.
Completing tasks in order to achieve an extrinsic reward is more akin to
how we describe work in its most alienating form. One of the many things
commonly missing from gamification is playful freedom. Playful freedom
allows learners to take risks and test new strategies in an environment
protected within the “magic circle” of gameplay, that is safe from real
world consequences. An environment in which failing at challenging tasks is
as integral a part of learning as succeeding, and the reward is the
learning that takes place between the two, and what that skill or knowledge
might empower you to do or be in the future. 
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Infographic: The Gamfication of Education

Infographic: The Gamfication of Education | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
Gamification has tremendous potential in the education space. How can we use it to deliver truly meaningful experiences to students? Let us know what you think in the comments.
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Diego Avila's curator insight, May 9, 11:39 AM

Infographic: The @Gamfication of Education

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What Does Gamification Look Like In Classrooms?

What Does Gamification Look Like In Classrooms? | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
Using games or game play elements in the classroom to drive learning outcomes is sill gaining popularity. Though most teachers aren’t ready to embrace bringing serious games like Minecraft into their classrooms, many are willing to gamify learning or use other types of games. That said, getting an idea of how many teachers are (or …
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Gamification, Game-based Learning, and Serious Games: What's the Difference?

Gamification, Game-based Learning, and Serious Games: What's the Difference? | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
Make sure you know the difference among gamification, game-based learning, and serious games.
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3D GameLab - Heroic learning, come play!

3D GameLab - Heroic learning, come play! | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
Learn while gaming. 3d game lab is education through online learning, gaming, teaching, training, teacher professional development.
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A "SIMPLE" Approach to Learning Games

A "SIMPLE" Approach to Learning Games | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
There are 6 components of gamification that are necessary to drive engagement. You can use the acronym SIMPLE to remember them.
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Engagement Formula for Corporate Learning

Engagement Formula for Corporate Learning | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
Include these elements in training. Both learning games and simulations are tailor-made for this formula for maximizing learner engagement.
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Marilyn Dantico - Using Mini-Games in the Classroom

Professor Marilyn Dantico talks about her experiences incorporating games in her required upper division research methods course. Hesitant at first, she incl...
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What is Gamification? A Few Ideas. - (Video)

In this whiteboard video gamification expert Karl Kapp describes the term gamification, talks about the two types of gamification (structural and content) an...
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Four Tips: Gamification, According to Endorphins

Four Tips: Gamification, According to Endorphins | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
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Avatar Secrets: An Interactive Documentary for the iPad

Avatar Secrets: An Interactive Documentary for the iPad | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
Avatar Secrets is a groundbreaking interactive documentary for the iPad. Written, directed and produced by Ramona Pringle. Launches Spring 2014.
Ana Cristina Pratas's insight:

"A digital project in form and content, Avatar Secrets explores the complexities of human connection in the wired world, examining the evolving nature of community, relationships, empathy and interdependence in the real world, and in the digital frontier.

Avatar Secrets chronicles director Ramona Pringle’s personal journey across borders and bandwidths in search of love, meaning and community in the 21st century. As she tumbles down the rabbit hole of the digital realm and ventures into massive online game worlds, Ramona discovers an idea that changes her life, and the way she sees the world: We’re not addicted to technology, we’re addicted to each other – to love, empathy, camaraderie, compassion.

By identifying the true allure of the digital world, Ramona starts to uncover the deficits in the real world, and in turn, wisdom about how we can personally, and perhaps, as a society reconnect and re-engage in real life in a more profound way. What are we missing? What are we looking and longing for? And how do we get what we need from our real – or hybrid – lives?

Developed for the iPad within a multi-layered 2.5D interface, Avatar Secrets combines cinematic live-action video footage, animated sequences, case studies, and interviews with some of the world’s leading minds in the digital conversation."

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niftyjock's curator insight, April 29, 3:07 PM

Interesting development in communication

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Best Practices in Instructional Design of Serious Games - Interactive Infographic

Best Practices in Instructional Design of Serious Games - Interactive Infographic | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
Learn about the Best Practices for Instructional Design of Serious Games through this interactive infographic
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4 Ways Serious Games Link to Learning (Free Download) -

4 Ways Serious Games Link to Learning (Free Download) - | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
A growing body of research supports the use of serious games in the workplace. And thanks to a year of successful implementations in corporate settings, some great case studies now point the way for organizations ready to use games for learning. Whether you want to use a true serious game, a gamified solution, or a combination of the two… it’s a great time to do so. While research shows that people learn more from games than other learning solutions, many L&D practicioners still do not know why games work… so they avoid using games entirely. If you think you want to use a game for learning, you first must become familiar with the types of “fun” in games, what’s required for real learning to happen, and the ways games can link the two. We’ve created a new guide to help you accomplish this. The content, researched and written by Knowledge Guru creator (and BLP president) Sharon Boller, takes the mystery out of using serious games in the enterprise. It’s a simple thing, really: become familiar with the ways people have fun in games, identify the common principles all effective learning solutions share, and then carefully map the two together. And once  you map the “fun” elements of your serious game to the elements needed for learning, you’ll also want to employ some research-based learning principles to actually help people remember the content after they’ve learned it. Are your game mechanics and game elements actually mapped to the cognitive tasks learners need to perform on the job? Are you taking advantage of the latest research on how the human brain best commits knowledge to long-term memory? The guide, titled 4 Ways Serious Games Link to Learning, is available as a free download.
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niftyjock's curator insight, April 14, 12:11 AM

Is the knowledge transferable? 

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The Difference Between Gamification And Game-Based Learning

The Difference Between Gamification And Game-Based Learning | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
The Difference Between Gamification And Game-Based Learning
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"Gamification is first and foremost about encouragement mechanics and the system that promotes them, while game-based learning is first and foremost about the game and its cognitive residue (whether from the game’s content, or academic content)."

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Special Issue on "Game Based Learning for 21st Century Transferable Skills: Challenges and Opportunities"

Special Issue on "Game Based Learning for 21st Century Transferable Skills: Challenges and Opportunities" | Digital Delights - Avatars, Virtual Worlds, Gamification | Scoop.it
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Special edition by the Journal of Educational Technology & Society, 2014
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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, March 24, 10:36 AM

This looks like an interesting issue.