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Of Natures and Gamers:
Lessons from developing a Geocaching
game for Citizen Science
Anne Bowser*, Derek Hansen+, Matthew ...
Floracaching
Floracaching
Citizen Science Apps
“Free as in puppies”
Floracaching
Intrinsic Motivations, Collectivism
Intrinsic Motivations, Collectivism
Intrinsic Motivations, Collectivism
Intrinsic Motivations, Collectivism
Competition, Reward, Progress
Explore nature, Socialize,
Scavenger hunt
Gamers Natures LBAG
players
Personal
enjoyment
✔ ✔ ✔
Collectivism ? ✔ ?
Competition ✔ ? ?
Reward ✔ ? ?
Progress ✔ ? ?
Expl...
Research Question:
Which activities do natures and gamers find
appealing?
Challenge:
Design a citizen science app that is
appealing to both naturalists and gamers
Method: Co-design Floracaching
2 universities
6 sessions
58 participants
Method: Co-design Floracaching
Activity
(difficulty)
Description Sample
motivation
Budding
Scientist
★
Report whether a
Fl...
Method: Co-design Floracaching
Surveys + focus groups
“Please rank the following activities in order from
most to least in...
Method: Co-design Floracaching
Data Analysis
Mann-Whitney U tests
Modified grounded theory approach
Similarities
A Geocaching game for citizen science
Social Interactions
Differences
Perceptions of Gamification
Guidance v. Autonomy
Integration v. Enrichment
Perceptions of Gamification
In this context
does it work?
Perceptions of Gamification
“Any kind of competition, with my friends or with a
larger community, perhaps with a prize or ...
Perceptions of Gamification
“It could be a long term game, like 2 groups of
people over the course of 2 months, trying to
...
Perceptions of Gamification
“I did not want to compare myself to others, I want
to learn for myself and had no use for thi...
Perceptions of Gamification
"I think you could motivate people to do it, but it
wouldn't be a game. It would be people who...
Guidance v. Autonomy
How much instruction do
users need in order to
contribute?
Guidance v. Autonomy
”With Geocaching it’s cool, and it’s fun, but it’s like
‘what’s the point’… whereas with this, if you...
Guidance v. Autonomy
I think one thing that would have helped … if I had
been assigned a specific task. Instead of saying,...
Guidance v. Autonomy
”I actually enjoyed all the activities. I would have
done all of them if there had been time.”
- Natu...
Guidance v. Autonomy
"Something that I think would be very valuable is -
but this is time related- is seeing if plants com...
Integration v. Enrichment
How does this fit into users
lives?
Integration v. Enrichment
”My wife and I struggle to grow a garden. I mean I
wouldn’t want to be responsible for capturing...
Guidance v. Autonomy
”I’m not going to drive an hour just to see if some
plant bloomed.”
- Gamer, focus group
Integration v. Enrichment
“If the app could run in the background with very
limited battery usage, and notify me if I was ...
Integration v. Enrichment
“I liked it a lot, just because I like to be outdoors.”
- Nature, survey
Integration v. Enrichment
”None of my other friends know anything about
plants so it would be cool to get them involved.
A...
1. Gamification & Citizen science
for both groups
2. Guidance & Integration for
gamer group
3. Autonomy & Enrichment for
n...
Explore Floracaching:
http://biotracker.byu.edu
Contact Anne Bowser:
Anne.bowser@gmail.com
@annebowser
Survey Participants
Natures Gamers All
Females 12/18
(67%)
9/23
(39%)
21/41
(51%)
Age range
(mean)
19-55
(31.5)
21-68
(28....
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Transcript of "Bowser.natureand gamers.2013presentation"

  1. 1. Of Natures and Gamers: Lessons from developing a Geocaching game for Citizen Science Anne Bowser*, Derek Hansen+, Matthew Reid+, Jocelyn Raphael+, Ryan Gamett+, Yurong He*, Dana Rotman*, Carol Boston* & Jennifer Preece* *University of Maryland +Brigham Young University
  2. 2. Floracaching
  3. 3. Floracaching
  4. 4. Citizen Science Apps
  5. 5. “Free as in puppies”
  6. 6. Floracaching
  7. 7. Intrinsic Motivations, Collectivism
  8. 8. Intrinsic Motivations, Collectivism
  9. 9. Intrinsic Motivations, Collectivism
  10. 10. Intrinsic Motivations, Collectivism
  11. 11. Competition, Reward, Progress
  12. 12. Explore nature, Socialize, Scavenger hunt
  13. 13. Gamers Natures LBAG players Personal enjoyment ✔ ✔ ✔ Collectivism ? ✔ ? Competition ✔ ? ? Reward ✔ ? ? Progress ✔ ? ? Exploring Nature ? ? ✔ Socialization ? ? ✔ Scavenger Hunt ? ? ✔
  14. 14. Research Question: Which activities do natures and gamers find appealing?
  15. 15. Challenge: Design a citizen science app that is appealing to both naturalists and gamers
  16. 16. Method: Co-design Floracaching 2 universities 6 sessions 58 participants
  17. 17. Method: Co-design Floracaching Activity (difficulty) Description Sample motivation Budding Scientist ★ Report whether a Floracache is flowering Citizen Science Friendly Floracacher ★ Check into a Floracache with a friend Social Tour Guide ★★ Make a plant tour Social, Explore Validator ★★★★ Validate that a first find was correctly identified Plant Identification
  18. 18. Method: Co-design Floracaching Surveys + focus groups “Please rank the following activities in order from most to least interesting” “What would motivate you to participate in Floracaching or a similar activity?”
  19. 19. Method: Co-design Floracaching Data Analysis Mann-Whitney U tests Modified grounded theory approach
  20. 20. Similarities A Geocaching game for citizen science Social Interactions
  21. 21. Differences Perceptions of Gamification Guidance v. Autonomy Integration v. Enrichment
  22. 22. Perceptions of Gamification In this context does it work?
  23. 23. Perceptions of Gamification “Any kind of competition, with my friends or with a larger community, perhaps with a prize or some sort of recognition.” - Gamer, survey
  24. 24. Perceptions of Gamification “It could be a long term game, like 2 groups of people over the course of 2 months, trying to compete for I don't know, points or whatever.” - Gamer, focus group
  25. 25. Perceptions of Gamification “I did not want to compare myself to others, I want to learn for myself and had no use for this activity.” - Nature, survey
  26. 26. Perceptions of Gamification "I think you could motivate people to do it, but it wouldn't be a game. It would be people who were seriously interested, who were willing to adopt an area, like you adopt a highway.” - Nature, focus group
  27. 27. Guidance v. Autonomy How much instruction do users need in order to contribute?
  28. 28. Guidance v. Autonomy ”With Geocaching it’s cool, and it’s fun, but it’s like ‘what’s the point’… whereas with this, if you’re contributing to science…” - Gamer, focus group
  29. 29. Guidance v. Autonomy I think one thing that would have helped … if I had been assigned a specific task. Instead of saying, ‘hey, go out and look at what you like and maybe you'll find something,’ but if I had been given a specific assignment saying ‘you need to complete this tour and you need to create a tour. Then you report back on how those specific things went.’ - Gamer, focus group
  30. 30. Guidance v. Autonomy ”I actually enjoyed all the activities. I would have done all of them if there had been time.” - Nature, survey
  31. 31. Guidance v. Autonomy "Something that I think would be very valuable is - but this is time related- is seeing if plants come back the next year, and when they bloom and when you see them start to develop.” - Nature, survey
  32. 32. Integration v. Enrichment How does this fit into users lives?
  33. 33. Integration v. Enrichment ”My wife and I struggle to grow a garden. I mean I wouldn’t want to be responsible for capturing that data unless I had a specific purpose for it. So if it was something having to do with my kids, teaching them how to collect data and how to do research it would be awesome. But if it’s just my wife and I it’s going to die and you’re not going to get your data.” - Gamer, focus group
  34. 34. Guidance v. Autonomy ”I’m not going to drive an hour just to see if some plant bloomed.” - Gamer, focus group
  35. 35. Integration v. Enrichment “If the app could run in the background with very limited battery usage, and notify me if I was within a certain distance of a specific plant.” - Gamer, survey
  36. 36. Integration v. Enrichment “I liked it a lot, just because I like to be outdoors.” - Nature, survey
  37. 37. Integration v. Enrichment ”None of my other friends know anything about plants so it would be cool to get them involved. And, like, make them want to... also go out.” - Nature, focus group
  38. 38. 1. Gamification & Citizen science for both groups 2. Guidance & Integration for gamer group 3. Autonomy & Enrichment for nature group Implications for designing citizen science apps
  39. 39. Explore Floracaching: http://biotracker.byu.edu Contact Anne Bowser: Anne.bowser@gmail.com @annebowser
  40. 40. Survey Participants Natures Gamers All Females 12/18 (67%) 9/23 (39%) 21/41 (51%) Age range (mean) 19-55 (31.5) 21-68 (28.7) 19-68 (30.0) Experience with LBAGs 9/16 (56%) 9/23 (39%) 18/39 (46%) Smartphone use 12/16 (75%) 19/23 (83%) 31/39 (79%)
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