InSync Training

Fun and Games in Training: Lessons from Dr. Stephen Slota

Posted by Katelind Hays on Aug 23, 2018 12:57:06 PM

70108610_sWhen was the last time you had fun during a mandated training event?

This loaded question plagues instructional designers and facilitators alike. Stakeholders know that training impacts overall organizational performance, making upskilling employees a high-stakes game. Without the proper instruction, teams may not achieve business-critical goals and, perhaps more detrimentally, become frustrated when they feel unprepared to handle the responsibilities of their roles.

As training professionals, we understand the risk of poorly designed or delivered learning events. But taking learning seriously doesn’t necessarily mean all training elements must feel serious. In fact, fun and games present a unique option to boost learner engagement and retention.

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Topics: Gamification, Game-Based Learning, Modern Learning on the Air

How Gamification Can Improve Corporate Learning

Posted by Jayla Beaumont on Jul 19, 2018 11:43:00 AM

Gamification is a term that is frequently thrown around in the training industry. It refers to the application of game elements and principles in learning sessions, and is a popular approach used in eLearning and company training sessions. In fact, the 2016-2021 Global Game-based Learning Market report stated that game-based learning products reached a global revenue of $2.6 billion in 2016.   

Gamification in training

It’s clear that corporations have acknowledged the effectiveness of gamification in learning programs. Its edge over other methods can be attributed to several factors: 

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Topics: Gamification, Game-Based Learning, Modern Classroom

Serious Learning Games 101

Posted by Katelind Hays on Jun 5, 2018 12:57:44 PM

41598042_sVirtually There Session recap

Have you heard? Modern learners love games. In fact, with the right design, these games have the power to increase learner engagement and boost retention.

Our organizations and stakeholders, though, often struggle to understand the value of games. “Having fun doesn’t equal skill building,” is a common refrain. How do we prove them wrong if they won’t buy in?

Take the first step by walking them through “Serious Games 101.” Andrew Hughes, President of Designing Digitally, graciously shared his serious game secrets with our Virtually There learners. This blog details the basics of serious games and game-based learning, allowing you to apply his model to your own corporate L&D.

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Topics: Virtually There, Modern Learning, Game-Based Learning

Gamification: It’s Not About the Competition

Posted by Katelind Hays on Mar 21, 2018 1:00:00 PM

62482228_s.jpgBadges, leaderboards, leveling up. These buzzwords sound like features in the latest video game, but, actually, they’re modern learning staples thanks to gamification and game-based learning.

Instructional designers know that gamification’s flexibility and adaptability make it useful for many programs, including new hire orientation, compliance training, and technical skill building.

As commonplace as gamification and game-based learning have become, the difference between the two categories can get muddied. Gain clarity with a helpful, quick video exploration thanks to Donna Designer Explores Gamification and Game-Based Learning.

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Topics: Gamification, Instructional Design, Game-Based Learning

Gamification and Game-Based Learning: The Engagement Game

Posted by Phylise Banner on Feb 8, 2018 1:25:18 PM
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Measuring the impact of gamification or game-based learning can seem challenging. How do we know if our learners are more engaged? How do we know if gamification motivated our team to learn more? How do we know if the game-based eLearning we created will affect productivity?

Before we can answer those questions, we need to look back at the alignment of our gamification and game-based learning strategies with our original learning objectives. If we set everything up correctly from the get-go, we should be generating data related to measurable results that we can report on.

As you’re recalling those objectives, consider measuring the impact of gamification and/or game-based learning through the lens of three core premises that drive our blended learning initiatives: transfer of knowledge, acquisition of skill, and change in behavior. 

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Topics: Gamification, Instructional Design, Game-Based Learning

What Does It Mean to "Play Together?"

Posted by Dr. Stephen Slota on Jan 25, 2018 1:00:00 PM

Understanding Social Interaction and Instructional Game Design

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Growing up in the Quiet Corner, much of my time was spent looking for ways to self-entertain. Technology access was fairly limited in the early-to-mid 1980s, but I did have two other valuable resources: people and the woods behind our house. I’d sometimes play outside with a neighbor or friend from school, but more often than not, I’d wander off to invent my own playful activities in the trees, snow, mud, or pond across the road. Once my younger sister was old enough to understand game mechanics and rules, I shifted from solo play (e.g., matching games, flashcards, Calvinball) to collaborative and competitive play (e.g., Candy Land, Operation, Mario Kart). My dad eventually taught us chess and soccer, and my mom, who wouldn’t think of herself as a “gamer,” encouraged us to play board and card games like Trouble and cribbage as part of our family time. We regularly visited the playground, and on special occasions we would visit playful venues like Discovery Zone. Every season and in any weather, we played everything from tag, house, and manhunt to Donkey Kong Country, Monopoly, and Dungeons & Dragons. More than a hobby, play was a mindset instilled in me by others and something I tried my best to spread.

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Topics: Gamification, Instructional Design, Game-Based Learning

The Power of Play

Posted by Phylise Banner on Jan 16, 2018 1:00:00 PM

InSync_0917_02_The_Power_of_Play_Thumbnail_1_Draft.pngWhen we talk about game-based learning and gamification, we’re always throwing in the notion of learner engagement. We’re immersing our learners through…what? Fun? Games?

Play. It’s all about the power of play, and how humans naturally learn in playful states.

Play takes on many shapes, sizes, and definitions. According to Jeff Everhart, Instructional Technology Trainer and English instructor, when defining play within a learning perspective we should focus on activities that contain, possess, or exhibit some or all of the following characteristics:

• An aspect of fun or novelty
• Immediate or timely feedback
• Unpredictable rewards (that are not necessarily tied to objectives)

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Topics: Gamification, Game-Based Learning

Get Your Head in the Game

Posted by Katelind Hays on Sep 7, 2017 2:51:41 PM

72222791_s.jpgWe know that bells and whistles don’t always improve training experiences. Throwing more EdTech into our learning environments without consideration for its relevance or effectiveness often has a counter-productive effect – learners focus more on the technology than on the content.

The same holds true for leveraging trending instructional design models. If we jump on every “hot new trend” bandwagon, we can easily miss the mark of constructive modern blended learning. Each approach we choose to incorporate into our blends must have a purpose – authentically addressing an individual learning objective.

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Topics: Gamification, Modern Blended Learning, Blended Learning Instructional Design, Game-Based Learning

Gamification in EveryDay Life

Posted by Vickie Hadge on Aug 31, 2017 1:21:32 PM

71862593_s.jpgSeptember’s Blended Learning Hub learning campaign focuses on gamification and game-based learning, both popular modern learning models.

I am smiling as I write this; the word ‘gamification’ immediately makes me think, “This is going to be fun!”

One example of gamification that I use every day is my FitBit. It gives me positive feedback when I reach certain levels. It physically celebrates when I meet my step goal! It vibrates and flashes and has a party right there on my wrist. When that happens I join the party! Whoop! Whoop! I did it! Hooray!

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Topics: Gamification, Blended Learning Hub, Game-Based Learning