Author: Jacob Guerra-Martinez

OLC Innovate Reflection

During the week of April 4th through April 8th, I was able to attend the OLC Innovate Conference, which took place in New Orleans, Louisiana. I was there to present alongside Dr. David Noffs for our presentation “Game On: The Practical Application of Game Elements in Online Graduate Courses.” Not only did we present our ideas on gamification, I also attended sessions that expanded my view of how gamification can be applied to different courses. Both focused on the narrative aspect of gamification, showing ways that story elements assist in course design. The first, “What’s Your Story? Creating Narrative in

The Benefits of Using Digital Badges in an Online Course

When it comes to online courses, faculty members are always on the hunt for new ways to keep their learners engaged. The use of Digital Badges is one form of engagement that has popped up over the past few years, yet many people are still unsure of how it can be applied to their online courses. What are Digital Badges? Badges are visual representations of skills that learners have acquired by mastering a certain skill or activity. Unlike certificates, badges are distributed and posted online and are used to validate settings that are formal and informal (Learning Tech, 2015). In

Feedback and Gamification: How They Can Be Applied to An Online Course

In my first post on gamification, I talked about the difference between gamification and game-based learning. In the second, I gave some tips on how you can get more familiar with the idea of gamification. Now I would like to talk about the different kinds of concepts involved in gamification, and how they can be applied to your online course, starting with feedback. Feedback One of the most important aspects of most games is that a system exists that gives instant feedback to let the player know how they did. This wonderful blog post from 2013 gives a great example

Three Things to Consider Before Gamifying Your Course

Gamification is one of those concepts that people hear about and want to try, but some are unsure of how to get started. Before diving right in, it is always best to take a step back and really understand what it means to gamify a course. In other words, the more you know how something works, the more effective you will be in using these concepts in your course. Here are three tips to help you get started on the path to gamification. Try Playing Some Games In my last post on gamification, I talked about the difference between gamification

Are Gamification and Game-Based Learning the Same Thing?

One teacher I remember well is my seventh grade Texas History teacher. One reason he stands out was his unique ranking system, which ranked his top ten students from all his courses based on their grades. The better you did, the higher you ranked. At the end of the year, if you were still in the top ten, you received a Texas-shaped plaque to commemorate your achievement. I recall working really hard that year so that my name would jump higher on the class rankings. While I did not recognize it at the time, my history teacher actually employed some