AccessAlly offers a Built-in LMS Gamification Plugin for WordPress
Gamification is turning boring online training programs into courses that deliver results.
What is gamification?
Gamification is a set of techniques that borrow the best aspects of playing games to make learning more fun and engaging. Some of the core concepts of gamification include point scoring, social motivations, and storytelling.
You’ve likely experienced gamification first-hand on many websites that you’ve visited. Some examples include sites that show a progress bar, that reward you with points when you complete onboarding tasks, or that surprise you with fun new things as part of a greater narrative.
Social media websites are some of the most gamified properties on the web because they prize engagement and are constantly coming up with ways to keep users coming back for more.
E-learning through a learning management system or membership site also benefit greatly from healthy competition and game mechanics.
Why gamification matters for engagement and better learning outcomes
When it comes to online training, we’ve all come to expect multimedia content where we can absorb information through audio-visual means.
IThese days, where distractions are high and we have a lot of outlets competing for our attention and it’s not enough to just give people a bunch of videos to watch. You have to keep them engaged with your training programs, and coming back for more with gamified learning.
It’s important to design a learning journey that takes students from point A to Z, with milestones and rewards along the way so they feel a sense of accomplishment that comes with their hard work.
By giving students an indication that they’re doing great and making progress, we can take the best aspects of game design and apply them to online learning.
To mimic the experience of playing a video game, you can use a combination of rewards, competition, and narrative.
With a gamified online course, you can reward your students with a “quick win” right after their first login to your site. This can go a long way in reversing buyers remorse, and also motivate students to keep going to see what else they can unlock or receive when they complete each lesson or module.
There’s also a highly social aspect to games, and being able to tap into other people who are also going through a course is very effective to increase engagement and online learning.
The bottom line is this: people who invest their time going through your courses should feel good about the experience, and want to come back for more.
By adding gamification touch points, you’re reinforcing the value of your offerings and making it easier to retain students so they get the outcomes they are after.
How LMS Gamification Works
Unfortunately, with a broad concept like gamification it’s not just something you can “turn on” and poof, you’ve got a gamified online course.
You need to design your gamification strategy based on your students and course content and have the tools to help you implement your ideas.
One way to add game design elements to your e-courses is to start by fleshing out the flow of a student’s journey on paper.
Start thinking about the different milestones or levels that students will reach, and how you plan to reward them along the way.
You can use any number of the following gamification elements, as long as your Learning Management System has a way of implementing your ideas.
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6 Type of LMS Gamification examples to Increase Member Retention
Design different graphical badges that your members or students can earn as they progress through courses or online experiences. You might have a new member badge, a quick learner badge, or an expert badge.
Points & Credits Systems
Students can earn points every time they login, complete a lesson or module, pass a quiz, or submit their homework. Points can be a reward on their own, or they can be tied to real monetary value.
Tap into people’s natural competitiveness to help motivate students, by ranking everyone based on their points or course results. Make it easy for students to connect with each other and compete for the top spot.
Choose Your Own Adventure
Make learning fun by wrapping your teachings into a meaningful narrative. Allow students to choose their own path through your content. Different pathways can be unlocked based on a user’s previous choices and mastery of the material.
Surprises & Prizes
A great LMS gamification example is designing a point system where students can use their points to redeem real world prizes. You can even set up bonus content to appear after a specific lesson is complete. Either way, the novelty makes it more fun!
What you measure improves, and by giving students a way to track their own progress and see how far they’ve come, they’re more likely to keep going. This is the power of progress tracking and benchmarking.
Keep Members Engaged with Built-In Gamification on Top of AccessAlly's Membership & LMS
Everything you need to gamify your online courses
AccessAlly’s built-in gamification features are tightly integrated with your memberships, online courses, and third-party CRM and email software. Everything you need to create a gamified learning experience is included in AccessAlly.
There are no additional LMS or gamification plugins required to increase learner engagement. Just connect your email marketing platform to WordPress, install AccessAlly, and all of these gamification features are at your fingertips!
Create LMS Points or Credit Systems Using Custom Fields
Think of a points tally or a credit system as a bank account, where a member can earn an amount of points or withdraw points based on their actions.
With AccessAlly, this point balance is saved in a Custom Field in your email marketing and CRM software, which means you can use this information when setting up your retention and marketing automation.
Points can be earned by:
- Logging into the members’ area
- Visiting a specific page
- Completing a lesson, module, or course
- Passing or completing a quiz
- Submitting homework
- Purchasing them outright (you set the value and price)
- Maintaining their membership
Your credit system can be designed to fit into the theme of your members’ area and use storytelling to gamify it. For example, you might reward students with stars, hearts, miles, carrots, or anything else you can think of!
This is one of the most popular ways AccessAlly makes it possible to create a gamified LMS experience for your members. You can motivate learners with points badges and reward them for completing learning activities.
Design Customizable Leaderboards Using Member Directories
Everyone can benefit from healthy competition, and with a points badges leaderboard, you can motivate learners to catch up or surpass their peers.
Any learning program can benefit from well thought out game mechanics.
You don’t need another WordPress member directory plugin to accomplish this: simply use AccessAlly’s learning platform member directory set up and set the display to rank your students by points.
You can set your member directory to display points and badges on each member’s profile, giving everyone something to aspire to.
These leaderboard directories are super flexible and can even include students’ quiz results or website links, for example.
Maximize The Benefits by Letting Students Redeem Points for Prizes
Gamification points can be effective on their own, but if you pair them with prizes or other valuable offers that people can redeem them for, it elevates the experience.
For example, if you offer a group coaching program where people earn points for participation and completing lessons, you could offer a short one-on-one session as something people can “unlock with points”.
Or you might have other bonus online training content, downloads, or goodies that can only be accessed based on points. It all happens with one click of a Custom Operation button in AccessAlly, and their points are debited from their balance and the prize is unlocked.
You can even have members purchase points outright, if they want to gain access to bonuses but didn’t have time to complete everything.
Applying game theory to improve employee engagement is just as effective, too.
Keep Students Engaged by Instantly Unlocking Surprise Bonus Content
Let’s say you want to add gamification to your online training courses, but you don’t want to get into awarding and managing points. No problem, you can still show surprise bonus content and award prizes when students complete lessons and quizzes.
Using the “Objective Completion” functionality in AccessAlly, you can instantly display anything from:
- Download buttons for bonuses
- Images and videos
- Links to other materials
- Motivational prompts to keep students going
These little touch points lend themselves to add in storylines and help nudge students along their learning journey. Your learning management system should support the game mechanics you have in mind, and AccessAlly’s gamified LMS does it well!
Interact & Engage with private notes
One of AccessAlly’s most versatile game based features is private notes.
Beyond using private notes for note-taking throughout a course, you can leverage this feature to help gamify the user engagement experience.
Engage with your students using private notes to share audio or video recordings from 1:1 coaching sessions, as a Q&A between the course creator and course participant, or as a way to submit homework or assignments for review.
Admins or team leaders can approve submissions and unlock additional content, award points for completion, provide direct feedback to individual students, and so much more.
Give Out Badges Based on Progress and Tags
AccessAlly offers a very flexible way of awarding game based inspired badges, which relies on your CRM’s tags. Whenever someone achieves another milestone, by completing an action on your site such as a quiz or course, you can apply a tag.
Based on which tags people have, you can display their badges and add them to a number of different places within the member’s area.
For example, you might display achievement badges on the student’s own profile page, as well as in a leaderboard or member directory.
You can even show which badges are left, and how to unlock them by creating a page that explains all of the achievements you’ve got in store as people progress through your courses.
Your online training will stand out from other learning management system options that don’t use game mechanics, because of the healthy competition.
Motivate Students with Progress Tracking Visuals
By tapping into the feeling of ownership over their learning outcomes, you can use the endowment effect to help students learn better.
Show students the objectives they’re trying to achieve as well as the progress they’ve made so far.
With AccessAlly’s learning management system progress tracking checklists and visual progress bars, pie charts, or percentages you’re in control of the look and feel.
These might seem like simple LMS features, but being able to show a student how far they’ve come is a way to apply gamification design into a learning environment.