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Gamification with Blackboard (Part 1)

Gamification is becoming a popular topic in education and for those that don’t know Gamification according to badgeville.com “is the concept of applying game mechanics and game design techniques to engage and motivate people to achieve their goals.” Although there are several different approaches to gamification in the classroom Blackboard provides a few ways to apply this concept to the LMS.

Quests: Adaptive Release

In most cases, there are several tasks that need to be completed in a particular order before a quest is marked as complete. Adaptive Release can be used to facilitate the availability status of the next task. When using adaptive release the next task can be triggered based on a date, grade/attempt, membership or review status.

  • Date: Use if your tasks are released on a certain date.
  • Grade/Attempt: This option should be used if you want to release an item based on an activity’s score or a student’s XP total. An option is available to release the item if the score falls between x and y or if the score is greater than, less than or equal to a value you specify.
  • Membership: This allows you to manually select individual students and/or groups to view content.
  • Review Status: This option requires the student to click the “Mark as Reviewed” button when they complete a task.

NOTE: It is possible for any item to have multiple adaptive release rules.

Teams: Groups

Another aspect of gamification is working together to accomplish a task. With group sets, each team can be setup as a group where students will have the option to pick their own team (Self-Enroll) or be randomly placed into a team (Random Enroll). The group feature allows students to work collaboratively and submit activities as a group. Groups also provide teams with a “Communication Hub” with access to File Exchange, Blogs, Discussion Boards, Journals, Email, Wikis, and more.

In Grade Center, Smart Views can be used to easily view a group’s members and individual points.

Stay tuned for Part 2 on using Achievements and Grade Center.

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Eric Silva

Eric is a Systems Analyst and Blackboard Administrator at The University of Texas at San Antonio, and a graduate from Boise State University. Learn more about me.


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