As it exists today, gamification is highly regarded as an innovative practice and teaching methodology that can improve learning experiences and outcomes. By creating an environment of play, it increases the students’ ability to learn and relate to real-life situations. Additionally, it creates an opportunity to increase student’s retention of knowledge since it relates to their real-life experiences. However, while regarded as an innovative tool, it is not widely available to teachers across the country. Gamification requires a substantial amount of effort to develop what most would consider a “good game.” And while the whole-school design approach is promising, it is not currently scalable, and has received a very limited amount of research into its effectiveness. As they currently exist, there are not a lot of individualized, or mission-based, approaches to assisting a teacher with transitioning their lessons into something that could be gamified. As such, there is room to look at gamification as a tool for improving learning outcomes at a more micro level, rather than a school-wide approach.
Additionally, there is room for lowering the amount of bandwidth required to transition content into something that can be gamified. As COVID-19 forces educational practitioners to rethink the delivery of education, gamification can be a tool to help increase students' engagement in class, which has largely been depleted due to the uncertainty of education the past year. However, to do so requires a more in-depth understanding of the problem and the hesitancy to implement game-based principles into classroom instruction. As such, this leads to my research question: how can we leverage the use of gamification in classrooms, to improve student retention of knowledge, in a way that is scalable and personalized for students based on their individual needs?