By Brian C. Steinberg
Baker College Online Faculty
GEO 101B: World Geography 1
GEO 102B: World Geography 2
SOC 321: Cultural Diversity
Using Online Games to Increase Student Engagement
Baker College E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Personal E-mail: email@example.com
1. Abstract / Teaser
2. Session Description
3. Session Objectives / Goals
5. History of Games to Facebook Games?
6. What is Gamification?
7. 5 Tips to Adding Gamification to Your Online Course
8. The Top 5 Benefits of Gamification In eLearning
9. 30 Facts About Gamification in E-Learning
10. Gamification: Stats
11. Seminar 1: Introductions: Create Your Visited States Map
12. Geography Games: Using Syllabus/Course Outline
13. Church of Geography
14. Using Current Events to increase Student Engagement
15. Using Bad Maps to Increase Student Engagement (What is wrong?)
16. Has anyone done anything with Gamification in their online courses?
17. Top 10 Reasons to Switch to Serious Games
18. The Psychology of Gaming: How Games Affect The Brain.
19. Class Craft?
21. Questions? Comments?
Online Classroom Examples
Come to this very interactive session and learn how to use online games and exercises to help increase
student engagement in your online classes. Geography class examples will be shared.
1. Abstract / Teaser:
Engagement: Using Games in the Classroom
This session will show and teach you how to use online games and exercises to help increase overall
student engagement in your online classes. Specific examples from a geography class will be used and
hopes to teach you how to apply it to your subject area in your online classes.
2. Session Description:
Attendees who attend this session will:
- Learn how to use online games and exercises to help increase student engagement in the online
- View examples of online games and exercises used in a geography class and be able to apply this
concept to their own subject area and classes.
- Learn how to use current events in your subject area to help increase student engagement in your
3. Session Objectives / Goals:
Recently, I started using online games and exercises in my geography classes to help increase student engagement. I really
have noticed this increasing student engagement in my classes over time.
For example, here is one exercise I have my students do the first week in Seminar One to help introduce themselves as to
where they are from and where in the USA they have lived and visited. This exercise lets them save their colored map and
post it in the class for engagement and discussions: http://www.defocus.net/visitedstates/generate.html
I also like to put in online geography games: http://www.sheppardsoftware.com/Geography.htm Even though this is for kids, I
find that geography competency amongst college students to be very low and fun online geography games like these help to
reinforce their past geography learning.
Now I have shown this for geography, but in this presentation I will solicit the conference audience for my session on what
they can do similar to this in their classes to help increase student engagement. What kinds of websites can you use games
and exercise like this for history, psychology, sociology, math, etc.?
And finally, something else I do to increase student engagement is to always have a “Current Events” thread going in my
geography classes to post any relevant issues and topics in the news for students to discuss. I always find this helps
Star Trek: TNG: The Game: Wesley Crusher returns to the Enterprise on vacation from the
Academy only to discover a mysterious alien game infiltrating and controlling the crew.
5. History of Games to Facebook Games:
The principles in this course did not originate in a computer lab but, rather, from the acute neurological
and psychiatric care wards of large hospitals. Thus this course presents general principles of gamification
that can be applied to the full range of the learning spectrum, ranging from people with severe disabilities
through to post-graduate and professional development applications
Gamification is the use of game thinking and mechanics in a non-game context to inspire employees and
students to get engaged in the learning process. The word itself was launched in 2002 by Nick Pelling, a British
IT expert, but wasn’t widely used until 2010. Based on extended research conducted by numerous educational
institutions, what makes games effective for learning is the learners’ level of activity, motivation, interactivity and
engagement. This increases their fluid, as well as crystallized intelligence, something that by definition optimizes
6. What is Gamification?:
Gamification: A Better Way of Reaching Online Learners
What is Gamification? Gamification in eLearning is the use of game theory and game mechanics in non-game contexts to engage and
motivate your users. Gamification is growing in popularity and is a common tool used in many online classes. There are many
different reasons and benefits to using gamification within your eLearning courses.
If you’d like to see measurable results in your online course, gamify it! We’ve created a list of 5 simple tips to get you started.
1. Create challenges or quests. In games, users have to meet a challenge in order to continue on. In the classroom, you can easily incorporate the same
concept. Many learning management systems easily allow prerequisites within your course. You can simply force the student to complete one task at a time, in
order to advance to the next course section.
2. Offer badges or rewards. Rewards are a great way to recognize student achievement and promote further motivation and confidence. Even if badges are
given for simply completing an assignment, quiz, or extra credit – the student will appreciate the recognition of effort.
3. Allow second (or third) chances. In video games, many times users have more than one “life” – when they fail a challenge, they are able to learn from their
mistakes and try again. In the classroom, it is the same concept. If a student takes a quiz and fails, perhaps they should have another chance to make a better
grade. Many times, students are more motivated when they have multiple chances to get the highest grade they possibly can.
4. Provide instant feedback. Feedback is essential for users to know how they are progressing in video games – and it should be the same in the classroom.
Although it may take a little longer for the teacher to give the feedback, rather than a computer, the student will appreciate it and know if their progress is
heading in the right direction.
5. Give students a choice. Some video games award differently depending on the path you take to reach the final goal. There are often times numerous paths
or choices to choose from. In the classroom, you can allow students different options to reach their end-of-course goal. Whether it is a test, project, or essay –
the student has a choice and can apply their knowledge in different ways.
7. Five Tips to Adding Gamification to Your Online Course
The Science And The Benefits of Gamification In eLearning
1. Increases learner engagement.
Gamification in eLearning can help eLearning professionals to create experiences that fully engage their learners. Gamification hold their attention and motivate them, given that they are striving to reach a goal.
When learners feel positive about their learning process and know that they are going to be rewarded in some way for their efforts, then they stop becoming passive observers and turn into active participants. By
doing so, they are able to effectively absorb the information and commit it to the long-term memory, because the knowledge itself is linked to the favorable experience you've provided through gamification in
2. Makes eLearning fun and interactive.
While you may have a variety of learning goals and objectives you want to achieve throughout the eLearning course, none of these outcomes can be effectively achieved if the learners aren't really excited
about what they are learning. Gamification in eLearning makes learning not only informative, but fun and exciting too. It also adds an interactive element to your eLearning courses. This creates the feeling of
immersion, which offers learners the opportunity to feel as though they are an integral part of the overall learning process.
3. Improves knowledge absorption and retention.
Whether you are designing an eLearning course that is centered around compliance training or one that focuses on eleventh grade biology, the goal is always the same; to instill knowledge within your learners.
Even more importantly, learners must be able to access this knowledge when they actually need it in the real world. Gamification in eLearning can improve knowledge absorption and boost knowledge
retention by blending endorphins and the awareness of real world benefits.
4. Gives learners the opportunity to see real world applications.
Gamification in eLearning allows learners to see the real world applications and benefits of the subject matter. They are able to get a first-hand look at how their choices within the game result in consequences or
rewards. If they do not fare well, then they aren't rewarded for their actions or aren't able to progress to the next level. In essence, you give them the chance to explore a topic at length and get a firm grasp on
how they might be able to apply that information outside of the virtual classroom, while they are in a fun and risk-free environment. Then, when they do venture out into the world, they will have the power to put
that knowledge to good use in professional or personal settings.
5. Enhances the overall learning experience for all age groups.
Regardless of whether you are designing eLearning deliverables for adult learners or for K-12 students, gamification in eLearning can help to make the overall eLearning experience much more effective. If
learners are having fun and are getting excited about learning, then they are more likely to actually acquire information. Even a subject matter that may be dull or complicated can be absorbed more easily,
because learners are actually enjoying the process and are actively participating. In fact, you can even integrate gamification into your eLearning courses in such a way that learners won't even know they are
acquiring new information. Knowledge absorption simply becomes a byproduct, as they are focused on achieving rewards and accomplishments within the eLearning course. This is often when real learning
takes place, however, as the boundaries that often hinder the learning process are removed. For example, learners don't have to deal with the stress that can be associated with learning, because they are too
busy having fun and enjoying the eLearning course.
8. The Top 5 Benefits of Gamification In eLearning
9. Thirty Facts About Gamification in E-Learning
11. Seminar 1: Introductions: Create Your Visited States Map
• Students can post it as a link, file, or cut
and paste it.
• Link will be erased after a few weeks.
• I tend to get the most student involvement
and engagement on this discussion thread.
• Option to only do USA or Canada too.
Professor. Steinberg: I think this is a great exercise for this class. Certainly, early on in this class to get to know everyone and where
they have been. Please note that your map is erased after a few weeks. I have tried to use one I made in the past and it was erased by
their server. But, I have been to all US States but Alaska.
I’ve visited 49 states!
map seminar 1.docx
Student XXX: This showed me exactly where I have been and made me really
want to start planning my next trip to see the United States. I knew I haven't
been many places but to see it laid out in photo it becomes more real for me.
Places I have seen United States Map 2016.png (82.838 KB)
Student XXX: Attached is my Visited States Map. I hope I am bless to
color in the rest of my map with more traveling. :)
I would like to adventure a bit more in the states where I only had time to
Fun assignment. Thanks for the trip down memory lane!
This was a fun exercise! It was hard at first to think of all the places I've gone (I travel a
lot for work)... The real interesting thing is how many states I've been too, but was still
really only able to mark them as red. A lot of times I go somewhere for work and
instead of enjoying the things around me, just treat it like I'm at home... i.e. go to work,
go home, eat, sleep etc. I should really take some time next time I travel to seek out
the sights and get to know the areas around me more.
Student XXX: Student XXX, I am curious, I see that you have Alabama green meaning
that you have spent a great deal of time there. Where at in Alabama have you been? I
used to live in the Mobile area. I am going back to visit family this summer.
Student XXX: It's obvious looking at my map that I haven't even touched any state West
of Colorado! I would love to visit more states in my lifetime!
Student XXX: When looking into this map I actually believed I had seen more then I
actually did. I really spend most of my time however, traveling through Michigan. Our
yearly trip to Mackinaw is our main trip. However, I spent both a mission trip and my
honeymoon down in Tennessee area. The states leading from Michigan
to Tennessee were just stopped in because they were in fact something we needed to
drive through in order to make it to Tennessee. But it really is cool to see it this way,
however, now I do feel like I need to schedule a vacation in the west coast!
Student XXX: Doing this exercise was pretty eye-
opening. While it isn’t any information that I didn’t already know
the visual packed a powerful punch. I have a lot of traveling to
do! I had always been in such a hurry to travel internationally
that I never really thought about what I was missing closer to
home. Once I finally did travel outside of the US, we went to
Jamaica for our honeymoon, it was not all it was hyped up to
be. I am now inspired to add more color to this very white
map. We have plans to go on an Alaskan cruise next year that
will add that along with Washington. Thank you for sharing this,
now all I have to do is convince my husband that we need to get
out and see our country!
Student XXX: Very interesting activity I had a lof of fun setting up
my map. It seems my map is mostly based off where I have
Student XXX: My map is sad, I need to go road tripping see the
sites in this country!
Student XXX: This was an interesting activity. I had to go back to
my Delta profile to see where I have been.
Here’s What Happens When You Ask People To Draw A Map Of The USA From Memory
We Have Been Misled By An Erroneous Map Of The World For 500 Years
West Wing Confronts The Scale Of Maps Used In Public Schools
SOC 321: Cultural Diversity Examines the social construction of groups based on race, ethnicity and national origin,
religion, gender, age, sexual orientation, and able-bodiness. Sociological (as well as psychological, historical, economic and
anthropological) perspectives will be applied to concepts such as prejudice, stereotyping, discrimination, racial and ethnic
identity, racial formation, power and privilege, assimilation and pluralism, and tolerance, Emphasis will be on increasing
knowledge, and personal awareness and sensitivity. Prerequisite(s): None. Co-requisite(s): None.
What Country in the World Best Fits Your Personality?
XXX Student: That quiz was fun! I definitely do not have any desire to visit India
anytime soon. My friend went last year and came back with amazing stories and
pictures. I guess I can see why the quiz led to India. The quiz stated that "You are
driven in life by the search for meaning and have a passion for culture and religion. You
are a deeply spiritual person who thrives in an environment where people question their
existence and devote themselves to a higher sense of being. You enjoy a stimulating
environment and do best when you are challenged, mentally, and spiritually. You see life
as an adventure and enjoy conversing with others on the big philosophical questions of
life. Whether you are spending time in a bustling market, or meditating in a quiet
garden, you are nourished by a society that is devoted to serving others."
Student XXX: I did enjoy the quiz. Dubai is located on the southeast coast of the
Persian Gulf and is one of the seven emirates (state) that make up the country. From
what I seen of the emirate state it is nice. The result of the test includes some of the
things I like to do. I do like the finer things in life. I do love to surround myself with
beautiful things. I like fine cuisine and entertainment. The deeper side of me enjoys
Student XXX: The quiz was fun! I got France. Some of this is
true. You are a romantic who enjoys strolling through cobblestone
streets and markets. You are inspired by art and architecture, and
thrive being surrounded by other artists and intellectuals. You enjoy
the bustle of a city, but also love spending time in the warm
countryside, sitting at a cafe, and having a glass of wine or coffee.
Your soul is nourished by being in nature, and by having deep
meaningful conversation about love, art, and the meaning of life.
You are a romantic who enjoys strolling through cobblestone
streets and markets. You are inspired by art and architecture,
and thrive being surrounded by other artists and intellectuals.
You enjoy the bustle of a city, but also love spending time in
the warm countryside, sitting at a cafe, and having a glass of
wine or coffee. Your soul is nourished by being in nature, and
by having deep meaningful conversation about love, art, and
the meaning of life.
Student XXX: I really enjoyed this quiz. I thought the
explanation was spot on, even my wife agreed after I read it
to her. The country I wouldn't mind visiting either.
Student XXX: This was fun. I was surprised to see Brazil. I have never thought of
traveling to the giant of South America. I must say that the city of Rio de Janeiro
always looks appealing in pictures. The description was pretty spot on. “You are an
adventure enthusiast, who likes to party, and enjoy a wild night out. You appreciate a
culture with a vivacious lifestyle. You are drawn to warm climates, and love being near
the water. Sitting at home is not your style. You'd rather be doing something active or
walk around the city with friends. You are fed by good conversation and have a strong
personality. Your motto in life is, "Life is for living" and in Brazil you are surrounded by
others who share your passion.” This is pretty much me. For now the only Rio that I will
see is in the cartoon movie I watch all the time with my three year old daughter. She
loves it and the dancing. Maybe she is going to be a vivacious lifestyle lover like her
mommy. My mellow husband says we are two of a kind. Sounds like a great girls trip in
the years to come. It is also interesting that we all have different results.
Student XXX: I got New Zealand, a place I have always wanted to go, but haven't made
it too yet. I have always wanted to do a backpacking trip. My hope is to go Fall of 2015.
The quiz talked about my love of adventure and mountains which is very accurate, I
enjoy hiking whenever I can. I don't normally take these Facebook type quizzes ("Which
member of Full House are you most like") but I appreciated this one.
Student XXX: New Zealand makes perfect sense! I am obsessed with
Australia and this being it's neighbor, I won't complain! I always joke
about how I am going to move out there one day, the landscape and the
culture is so, chill, the people seem like they live much more day by day
than how it is in the US, a rush. I like this area also because it is rurally
developed, the people seem to still appreciate the land still and aren't
putting down pavement everywhere.
You are an adventurous individual who enjoys being outdoors and
spending time being active. You are a risk taker and have no problem
striking up a conversation with a total stranger. When you travel you love
to get to know the locals, and their customs, and are always up for a
challenge. You thrive in a culture where others share your deep
appreciation for land, and believe life is best lived outdoors. You love a
hard hike, but also love the water and are happy to spend a day beach
side. You thrive in a society with diversity and appreciate a simpler way
of living. You are keen on learning about cultures and customs that are
different than your own, and enjoy a deep conversation, whether it be
philosophical or spiritual. You are not a city dweller by any means, and
definitely believe that life is something to explore and experience
firsthand. This country gives you endless opportunities to live both an
active lifestyle and enjoy the company of new found friends.
Student XXX: This was a lot of fun! I was not surprised that the country I received is
Italy. I enjoy the simple things in life, love history, and wine! I hope one day to visit Italy
and sip some amazing wine. I also find the cuisine to be my favorite food. You cannot
go wrong with cheese and pasta!
Student XXX: I got New Zealand. This totally makes sense with my personality. I
prefer an environment where people and nature matter, not things. I enjoy reflecting on
life and appreciating the small things. I always thought my ideal place to live would be
Denmark, maybe I will have to rethink!
Dialect Map Of U.S. Shows How Americans Speak By Region (IMAGE)