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Thursday, June 23 • 11:30 - 12:20
CON06.03 - The Design and Implementation of Game-Based Learning Systems in Higher Education and Health Professions Education

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Gamification is an umbrella definition for incorporating game oriented activities into a system that is not a full-fledged game, such as education or a course (Deterding, 2012). Over the past decade there has been an increasing adoption of game mechanics in non-game applications, such as learning, commerce, strategic simulation and medicine. Gamification and game-based learning increase motivation, permit rehearsal of professional behaviors and encourage self-directed and problem-based learning. It is an innovative method for teaching topics such as clinical decision-making, concept mapping, social media, game design, and multimedia. Our team has been using gamified systems to train health care university students (undergraduate education) and health care professionals (continuing education) to increase engagement and retention of course material.

In this workshop, participants will learn how educational game designers produce effective higher education and health professions training. This workshop will demonstrate how to convert learning objectives to game objectives, synchronize learning activities to simulation, design a narrative, create in-game challenges, utilize weighted random game elements and beta-test these learning systems. The workshop will provide participants with both theoretical and experiential components of gamification. Educators may choose “unplugged” or “plugged-in” gamification as well as multi-participant gaming. The comparative development costs across all platforms will be reviewed. Commonalities and differences between higher education and continuing education learners will be discussed. Barriers to implementation, such as conforming to external accreditation standards and evaluating performance in modified courses will also be addressed.

Gamification not only fosters intrinsic motivation, but also enables students to develop concept maps, algorithmic patient care decision path rehearsal and acquisition of didactic content. Gamification is at the leading edge of educational technology and does not require the use of digital media to be effective.

Deterding, S. (2012). Gamification: Designing for motivation. Interactions, 19, 14–17.


Rob Bajko

Rob Bajko, Ph.D., Lecturer, School of Professional Communication, Ryerson Dr. Bajko’s research interest involves the impact of mobile technologies such as laptops, tablet computers, smartphones, and cellular telephones on the cultural, business and social behaviour and attitudes... Read More →

Raquel Meyer

Raquel Meyer, PhD, RN is Manager of the Baycrest Centre for Learning, Research and Innovation in Long-Term Care. Dr. Meyer completed her doctoral studies and Nursing Early Career Research Award at the Lawrence S. Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing (Toronto).

Additional Authors

David Chandross

David Chandross M.Sc., M.Ed., Ph.D.: Game Designer, Ryerson University and Baycrest Dr. David Chandross is a curriculum design consultant specializing in gamification in both health professions education and higher education. He is currently the Program Coordinator for Ryerson University... Read More →

Deborah Fels

Deborah Fels, PhD is a Professor of Media Studies and School of Business at Ryerson University. Dr. Fels holds a BASc (Guelph), MHSc in Clinical Engineering, PhD in Industrial Engineering (Toronto), and a PEng.

Jennifer Reguindin

Jennifer Reguindin, BScN, MScN, GNC(C), RN is an interprofessional educator for the Baycrest Centre for Learning, Research and Innovation in Long-Term Care. Jennifer holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree (Ryerson) and a Master of Science in Nursing degree (York).

Lori Schindel Martin

Lori Schindel Martin, RN, PhD is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Nursing at Ryerson University. Dr. Schindel Martin earned a PhD in Health Sciences, Nursing from McMaster University.

Thursday June 23, 2016 11:30 - 12:20 EDT