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Get Your Learning Game On: Gamification of Education

I ran across this great infographic regarding the potential for gamification to have a truly meaningful impact on education. Some key stats that stuck out for me:

  • 1.2 million fail to graduate high school each year
  • 3B hours are spent on playing video and computer games

Gamification of Education

Of course gamification isn’t the end all, be all solution for upping the students investment in their education. I read a great post about 3 Reasons NOT to Gamify Education and the quote that stuck out for me was:

“I don’t think just because you offer an award, like a badge, it will motivate students intrinsically or help them at all. But, tying it into your classroom to make the overall experience fun, meaningful and a challenge can help.”

I think this is a key point that anyone considering gamification of their product/training/event/etc. should consider. Basically slapping on a gamified approach won’t make it successful. Serious thought should be applied to what it is you are most wanting your demographic to think/know/feel/do and when appropriate a gamification tactic can be deployed to motivate your demographic accordingly.

Jesse Schell breaks down how gamification and games can make a significant impact on education. About 14 mins in he talks about one of my favorite example Quest to Learn, which I have blogged about previously, and another example I recently became aware of called Khan Academy.

So what are some examples of good vs. bad gamification for education? Surprisingly I found my good and bad examples, of course this is in my opinion only, from the same company. Read More »

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Digital Engagement Through Transmedia Storytelling

I have been hearing folks talk about transmedia storytelling for several years now but haven’t spent time on this blog discussing this concept. Seems high time I did so and figured I should start off by attempting to define what it actually means. According to Wikipedia transmedia storytelling, also known as multi-platform storytelling, cross-platform storytelling, or transmedia narrative, is the technique of telling stories across multiple platforms and formats using current digital technologies. Henry Jenkins officially defined transmedia in 2006 in his book “Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide,” as a story that “unfolds across multiple media platforms, with each new text making a distinctive and valuable contribution to the whole.” So given this transmedia storytelling is just the tip of the transmedia iceberg with transmedia branding/activism/performance/etc. waiting in the wings so to speak :)

Diving into the purpose of transmedia storytelling, the common definition is that it is meant to extend the brand reach of the product by using multiple stories that are set in a single universe but told across a variety of outlets. These overlapping publishing points complement each other to form an overarching narrative. So transmedia storytelling isn’t just re-publishing the story in multiple platforms it is about using a medium to augment the base storyline for example–comics might provide back-story, games might allow you to explore the world in the story, social media might enable curated commentary on the story developing into a story line in and of itself and the television/web series offers unfolding episodes. Keep in mind that if your story doesn’t resonate with your audience transmedia approaches won’t fix that. That’s right, as always, content is king and transmedia is a great option for extending powerful content to a variety of platforms/formats. So how are digital technologies empowering transmedia? According to Tribeca Film:

Transmedia is the new space where visual storytelling exists because:

1. Every screen we can imagine (TV, smart phone, tablet, laptop and yes, the lowly desktop computer) is reached by Internet video, audio, text and images.

2. Every connected consumer can reach back — through each screen.

In the below video iPad storyteller Joe Sabia demonstrates how new technology has been instrumental in enabling people to tell stories, from pop-up books and to his own onstage iPad storytelling techniques. Read More »

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Cisco Blogs Get Gamified

So for those who read my blog posts you know that gamification is a topic I am keenly interested in. I have discussed gamification tactics for changing the learning dynamic, disrupting the traditional workplace dynamic, encouraging a healthy lifestyle, and engaging hybrid event attendees.

What I find absolutely fantastic is that all most anything can be improved by appliying smart gamification tactics. See the video below for example:

So imagine how tickled pink I was when I learned we would be gamifying the Cisco blog experience!

The Cisco Social Media team announced the Cisco Social Rewards program today. You can join now via the right hand column social rewards section of this blog. This program rewards and recognizes blog readers for their viewership, dialogue, and word of mouth promotion of Cisco blogs and recognizes bloggers for their video production, writing skillz (yes I meant to have a z on the end ;), and prolific publishing. Read More »

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Get Ready For Gamification: Announcing Cisco Social Rewards

We are excited to announce the launch of a new program called Cisco Social Rewards! Through gamification, the program is designed to recognize and reward users for their ongoing participation! What is gamification you ask? Gamification is the integration of game mechanics within a marketing campaign, program or tool designed to increase engagement, loyalty, recognition and fun! Sign up for the program via a social connection by clicking on the Join Today banner in the right column of the page and start earning points, badges and a reputation for your activities across the blog site!

Here are just a few activities that you can perform to earn points on the site:

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Events Redefined Part II: Cisco’s Global Sales Experience

In the last post I wrote about Cisco’s Global Sales Experience (GSX) I touched on how gamification tactics and the overhaul of the virtual recognition program were critical to the events success. As promised in that post I am going to dive deeper into these two areas to provide additional insight into why the tactics leveraged were so successful. Before I do I thought I would like to share this video featuring some industry experts on the importance of gamification tactics and why GSX is a great case study.

Several elements of GSX leveraged gamification principles to push the envelope on remote engagement. I am going to dive deeper into one of these areas the Architectures Mastery Program of the GSX virtual environment.

Before the event the team did a critical analysis of previous year’s results and engaged the sales force in surveys and focus groups to help us better understand what is working and what is not with the GSX program.

The Architectures Mastery Program was a result of this analysis. What we saw from metrics reporting was that the live architecture sessions attendance was low but the scores were high. What we learned from surveys and focus groups was that the sales force felt that previous architectures courses were too heavy on the ‘marketing’ message and didn’t provide enough insight into the competitive differentiation and the ROI for customers to adopt an architectures approach.

What was surprising was after we researched the training offerings enabled by the Cisco Learning Development and Solutions group it was clear that these types of trainings did exist but adoption had been low. So the opportunity we saw was to raise awareness of these existing training offerings and up-level the attendance of the live GSX architecture sessions. Hence the Architectures Mastery Program was born.

We created a set of criteria’s regarding the course publish date, target audience, global relevance, length and required attendees to pass an assessment for each course. The attendees had a choice of completing five courses from any of the architectures and attending one live architecture session of their choice. This enabled the audience to tailor the program to best meet their needs, i.e. specialists could focus on one architecture and generalists could pick and choose from amongst the architectures. The content was then packaged in a micro-site that clearly outlined the requirements and the attendee progress towards completion. A badge was created that had six individual components and as a requirement step was completed one of the components would change from black and white to full color. Once the entire program was completed the badge was full color and a “higher learning’ achievement was unlocked.

Post event the attendees who completed the program were placed in a drawing for a prize and an email was sent to them, with their manager copied, notifying them they had achieved architectures mastery with a downloadable version of the badge for their internal profiles and email signatures.

The metrics speak for themselves with over 3k learning modules completed and 2% of the audience achieving architectures mastery during the event.

Virtual recognition is tough , especially when being stacked up against a former in person experience were you got to walk across a BIG stage and shake John Chambers hand. However it is not impossible and can actually enable vehicles to recognize contributions at deeper levels since it is not as time and place constrained as in person recognition.

This year GSX was able to ‘crack the code’ on virtual recognition. Read More »

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