How to Gamify Your eStudent Services

How to Gamify Your eStudent Services

NOTE:  I conducted this presentation yesterday at Educause.  I’m not (of course) going to reorder and finesse bits of it.  So stay tuned (I’ll be updating the blueprint accordingly.)

As I mentioned yesterday, feel free to use this presentation in its entirety.  Please give me a nod as the original creator – I have that millenial/gen X ingrained need for accolades.

In this session, you’ll embark on a collaborative journey from the basics of game mechanics through a make-and-take plan for implementing gamified experiences for your students. We will identify opportunities, brainstorm solutions, and explore examples from institutions that have implemented all or parts of a gamified solution.  Click on the blueprint below to access and download a Google Doc version of the accompanying How to Gamify Your eStudent Services Blueprint.

Access this page at:


**Each time you see this icon in our presentation, you’ll be referring back to the blueprint to plan for the implementation in your institution.**  

The objectives for our session include:

  • Describe how game mechanics can be leveraged to motivate specific student behaviors.
  • Explain how cultural and institutional factors interact with agile committee design and development.
  • Create an interactive blueprint for gamifying e-student services.

Extra Credits:  Gamifying Education

What the Experts Say about Game Mechanics

Gamification InfographicCreated by Knewton and Column Five Media


Go to your Make-and-Take Blueprint.  Brainstorm and take notes for the PREPARATION section.

EX:  The Academic Game Plan Challenge at Tri-C

  • Students don’t have clear pathways for progressing towards their degree.
  • Student often self-advise, take extra courses that they don’t need, and don’t take courses that they do need.


  • Create a gamified mechanism for students to have, check, and use an academic plan

Behaviors we want to motivate and reinforce in our students:

Behaviors relating to having and using an academic plan:

  • Having an academic plan
  • Checking an academic plan
  • Making regular progress
  • Making real-time adjustments as needed
  • Having an “end date” for graduation

Behaviors relating to student success:

  • Participating in New Student Orientation & eLearning Orientation
  • Registering early
  • Attendance (virtual or F2F)
  • Tutoring
  • Advising
  • Mentoring

Storyboard for Academic Game Plan

Vendor Storyboards and Game Mapping


Go to your Make-and-Take Blueprint.  Brainstorm and take notes for the GOAL ORIENTATION section.

Gamification of Student Services and Experiences

RIT’s Just Press Play

RIT Just Press Play

So what is Just Press Play?

  • Component of the student experience
  • Incentivizes college interaction and engagement
  • Multiple ways to track participation
  • Multiple ways to participate
  • Student’s assemble their own “quests”
  • Funded through Microsoft Research Connections
  • Will release open source code shortly for other institutions

eStudent Services at Tri-C through Title III Grant

  • eMentoring
  • eAdvising
  • eTutoring
  • eLearning Orientation Online
  • New Student Orientation Online


Go to your Make-and-Take Blueprint.  Brainstorm and take notes for the eSTUDENT SERVICES PLANNING section.


High Tech Options

  • Integrated technology like Just Press Play
  • Virtual Badges through Mozilla Open Badges
  • QR codes

Low Tech Options

  • Virtual Scavenger Hunts
  • Adaptive release in LMSs
  • QR codes
  • Manual, paper-based playcards

Working in Context:  Cultural Factors


Go to your Make-and-Take Blueprint.  Brainstorm and take notes for the PROBLEM SOLVING section.


May the odds be ever in your favor.

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