The introduction and evolution of e-learning games have always made me wonder how easily e-learning can be made fun by using popular game concepts like Mario, Temple Run, Angry Birds or any other favorite game of yours which you can think of. E-learning games provide a complete immersive learning experience, that makes the learners wanting more of it.

Whenever we are designing such e-learning games I am always reminded of the old and traditional form of e-learning, which contained textual content and some basic graphics. The modules had no interactivity other than asking the learners to click the next button. From then on, e-learning modules have evolved continuously to better and efficient forms which are engaging and responsive. The present-day e-learning modules effectively use the emerging strategies like  e-learning games and microlearning in their organizational learning strategy to make the learning process more interesting and effective.

Hence in this blog, let us see the top 5 benefits of using e-learning games.

1. Facilitate and Augment The Learning Process

Games for learning are you serious?……
Some years back if you had suggested using games for your corporate learning requirement/s, I am sure you would have garnered a similar reaction from the L&D fraternity.The general impression about the games was that they could be used only for fun and entertainment and not for learning purpose.

Research suggests learners those who played learning games ended up with:

11% higher factual knowledge than those who used other learning methods.
14% higher skill-based knowledge than those who used other learning methods.
9% higher retention rate than those who used other learning methods.

So how do the e-learning games facilitate the learning process?

1. They stimulate the mind and aid in better decision making.

2.They provide immediate feedback to the learners, which helps them understand the mistakes if any.

3. The game play enables better retention and recall of the learning topics. For example, the use of game mechanics like challenges, milestones, and rewards motivate the learners to continue playing the game (rather than leaving it midway like in an e-learning module) and reach the desired completion levels, which creates positive reinforcements and increased memory retention. The inclusion of leaderboards further motivates the learner to score higher by revisiting (replaying) the e-learning game.

2.Easy To Build And Quick To Set Up

Yes, you heard it right…e-learning games are now easy and quick to set up.
A peek into some years back and you can find that developing e-learning games was not an easy task and only organizations who had the resources and capabilities for it. Moreover developing an e-learning game required highly skilled experts to work for days to build an e-learning game. The complexities of games design, lack of proper resources etc. posed challenges to the designers and developers.

But today the process of developing e-learning games have become less complex thanks to the rapid authoring tools introduced about 7-8 years back ,which have completely eased out the development process. These tools include ready templates and online libraries-characters with different poses, backgrounds, textures, talking heads etc that quickly help in creating e-learning games.

These tools also enable the output to be published in SCORM and HTML5 formats, which are compatible with most of the devices-desktops/laptops, mobiles, iPads, tabs etc and can be easily accessed through the existing LMS in the organization with practically no setup costs.

3. Competition And Collaboration

E-Learning games have the power to induce completion amongst the learners. One of the easiest ways to induce competition is the inclusion of leaderboards. Nowadays there are a variety of leaderboard plugins, which are easily available and can be customized to the preference of the organisation and can be easily added to the LMS or web servers.
E-learning games can also bring the element of social interaction which can lead to better collaboration among the learners.
For example, the e-learning games can allow the learners to share the scores, badges etc on the social media sites like Facebook etc. To bring better collaboration, organisation can create a private group for the learners on the social websites and encourage discussions on them.

4.Power to Engage

E-Learning games have the power to engage the learners like no other learning strategy can. Take a case in point where we recently developed an e-learning game with the theme of Snake and Ladder for the sales team of an Insurance company. The game was well appreciated by the audience as it could engage them and at the same time make them achieve the learning objectives.

The e-learning game included different elements like –

1. A scenario-based learning experience where the learners learn how to pitch the products to the customers.
2.The learners could win points and earn badges which could be shared on the social media.
3.The game displayed the leaderboard scores which helps in creating a healthy competition among the learners.

5. Increased ROI

Training the employees is always an investment that every organization makes with the expectation of getting better returns or results over time. The returns can be both quantitative and qualitative. By implementing e-learning games, the organizations can see an increased ROI in the following ways-

1. E-Learning games help in better retention of the learning topics which builds the confidence among the learners to apply and implement what they have learned on the job thus improving the employee performance and the organizational productivity.  According to a 2011 study by Tracy Sitzmann, e-learning games can enhance knowledge retention by almost 90 percent.

2. Reduced development and set up cost almost equivalent to classroom training

With the present workforce going to be replaced by the millennials very soon, and with the statistics pointing out to the decreasing attention span of the millennials, it becomes necessary for the organization to bring new learning strategies to engage the learners. Hence I feel that e-learning games can be one such active learning strategy to keep the millennials engaged. If you are looking to develop e-learning games for your corporate training requirements, feel free to contact us anytime for advice and suggestions.