The Difference Between Gamification And Game Based Learning

There is a widespread confusion about the difference between gamification processes and game based learning. So widespread even, that some don’t even know there is a difference. Let me explain.


A definition for gamification could read like this: Gamification is the use of game design elements (mechanics & dynamics) in non-game environments. It is infusing playfulness into situations that are not playful to begin with.


A definition for game based learning could read like this: Game based learning is the use of games for teaching or developing skills.  Existing games are used to integrate knowledge and/or techniques in the student.


empire avenue
Now, the confusion isn’t all that strange, since the two techniques can be both present at the same time. Take for example Empire Avenue, which is a new kind of hybrid between a social network, an online marketing tool and some sort of a social stock-market game. If you are a marketeer using Empire Avenue, you are using a gamified marketing tool. If you are a teenager working your way up the leaderboard without any business goals, you are using Empire Avenue as a game which teaches you about how to use social networks in a professional setting, which would make it game based learning.
That’s it for now. Hopefully you find this helpful. Please, if you have any comments or questions, let me know!


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