A framework for utilizing unexplored game elements in designing learning systems

Sara Adel Elshorbagy, Nada Sherief, Walid Abdelmoez


Gamification is defined as the use of game elements and designs in non-gaming areas and applications such as education, marketing, and healthcare. That is to facilitate and develop the engagement of users with a product or service. Researchers have found that gamified learning has the ability to improve student success, interaction, and enjoyment of courses. Recently, researchers suggested that one way to achieve that is through the personalization of students’ experiences. However, research has been focusing on a narrow group of game elements which does not ensure equal consideration when designing for different personality types. In this paper, our aim is threefold that is: to identify the unexplored game elements in the learning domain to ensure equal experiences for different personality traits; to study the utilization of the identified unexplored elements and how they can be used in relation with different personality types and learning styles to make learning tasks more desirable and enjoyable; to inform and enrich the design of gamified e-learning systems. To achieve that aim, we analyzed the literature to identify the unexplored game elements, conducted a focus group study to examine the utilization of unexplored game elements along with other contextual aspects. Then to formalize the results reached from our study and provide more systematic means for software engineers to extract useful information that can inform their designs, an ontology was implemented for that purpose. Finally, an existing gamified e-learning framework was adapted to illustrate how the formed artifacts and models interrelate to realize the research aim.


Gamification, Learning Styles, Ontology, Personality Traits, Software Engineering

Full Text:



Akgün, Ö. E. and Topal, M. (2018). Adaptation of the Gamification User Types Hexad Scale into Turkish. International Journal of Assessment Tools in Education, 5(3), pp. 389-402.

Alsawaier, R. S. (2018). The effect of gamification on motivation and engagement. The International Journal of Information and Learning Technology, 35(1), pp. 56-79. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJILT-02-2017-0009.

Antonaci, A., Klemke, R. and Specht, M. (2019). The effects of gamification in online learning environments: A systematic literature review. Informatics, 6(3), p. 32. https://doi.org/10.3390/informatics6030032.

Bouzidi, R., De Nicola, A., Nader, F. and Chalal, R. (2019). OntoGamif: A modular ontology for integrated gamification. Applied Ontology, 14(3), pp. 215-249. https://doi.org/10.3233/AO-190212.

Buckley, J., DeWille, T., Exton, C., Exton, G. and Murray, L. (2018). A gamification–motivation design framework for educational software developers. Journal of Educational Technology Systems, 47(1), pp. 101-127. https://doi.org/10.1177/0047239518783153.

Buckley, P. and Doyle, E. (2017). Individualising gamification: An investigation of the impact of learning styles and personality traits on the efficacy of gamification using a prediction market. Computers & Education, 106, pp. 43-55.

Çakıroğlu, Ü., Başıbüyük, B., Güler, M., Atabay, M. and Yılmaz Memiş, B. (2017). Gamifying an ICT course: Influences on engagement and academic performance. Computers in Human Behavior, 69, pp. 98-107. https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2016.12.018.

Challco, G. C., Isotani, S. and Bittencourt, I. I. (2019). The effects of ontology-based gamification in scripted collaborative learning. IEEE 19th International Conference on Advanced Learning Technologies (ICALT), Brazil, IEEE. pp. 140-144.

Dal Sasso, T., Mocci, A., Lanza, M. and Mastrodicasa, E. (2017). How to gamify software engineering. International Conference on Software Analysis, Evolution and Reengineering, Klagenfurt, Austria, IEEE. pp. 261-271.

Day, E. (2017). Classcraft: Transforming the Classroom into a Cooperative Challenge. Available from: https://www.gettingsmart.com/2017/09/05/classcraft-transforming-classroom-cooperative-challenge/. [Accessed in: Oct, 2022].

Dicheva, D., Dichev, C., Agre, G. and Angelova, G. (2015). Gamification in education: A systematic mapping study. Journal of educational technology & society, 18(3), pp. 75-88.

El-Shorbagy, S. A., Sherief, N. and Abdelmoez, W. (2020). Unexplored Gamification Elements in Learning Environments. International Conference on Software and Information Engineering (ICSIE). pp. 102-107.

Felder, R. M. and Spurlin, J. (2005). Applications, reliability and validity of the index of learning styles. International journal of engineering education, 21(1), pp. 103-112.

García, F., Pedreira, O., Piattini, M., Cerdeira-Pena, A. and Penabad, M. (2017). A framework for gamification in software engineering. Journal of Systems and Software, 132, pp. 21-40. https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jss.2017.06.021.

Greenfield, M. (2017). Value of the education gamification market worldwide in 2016 and 2021 (in million U.S. dollars). Available from: https://www.statista.com/statistics/608824/gamification-market-value-worldwide/. [Accessed in: Oct, 2022].

Horridge, M., Knublauch, H., Rector, A., Stevens, R. and Wroe, C. (2011). A Practical Guide To Building OWL Ontologies Using The Prot'eg'e-4 and CO-ODE Tools, The University of Manchester.

Ibanez, M.-B., Di-Serio, A. and Delgado-Kloos, C. (2014). Gamification for engaging computer science students in learning activities: A case study. IEEE Transactions on learning technologies, 7(3), 291-301. https://doi.org/10.1109/TLT.2014.2329293.

Jia, Y., Xu, B., Karanam, Y. and Voida, S. (2016). Personality-targeted gamification: a survey study on personality traits and motivational affordances. Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems. pp. 2001-2013.

Khaleel, F. L., Tengku Wook, T. S. M. and Ismail, A. (2016). Gamification elements for learning applications. International Journal on Advanced Science, Engineering and Information Technology, 6(6), pp. 868-874.

Knutas, A., van Roy, R., Hynninen, T., Granato, M., Kasurinen, J. and Ikonen, J. (2019). A process for designing algorithm-based personalized gamification. Multimedia Tools and Applications, 78(10), pp. 13593-13612. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11042-018-6913-5.

Konert, J., Göbel, S. and Steinmetz, R. (2013). Modeling the player, learner and personality: Independency of the models of Bartle, Kolb and NEO-FFI (Big5) and the implications for game based learning. Proceedings of the 7th European Conference on Game Based Learning (ECGBL). pp. 329-335.

Laine, T. H. and Lindberg, R. S. (2020). Designing engaging games for education: A systematic literature review on game motivators and design principles. IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies, 13(4), pp. 804-821. https://doi.org/10.1109/TLT.2020.3018503.

Landers, R. N. (2019). Gamification misunderstood: How badly executed and rhetorical gamification obscures its transformative potential. Journal of Management inquiry, 28(2), pp. 137-140. https://doi.org/10.1177/1056492618790913.

Lang, F. R., John, D., Lüdtke, O., Schupp, J. and Wagner, G. G. (2011). Short assessment of the Big Five: robust across survey methods except telephone interviewing. Behavior Research Methods, 43(2), pp. 548-567. https://doi.org/10.3758/s13428-011-0066-z.

Lavoué, E., Monterrat, B., Desmarais, M. and George, S. (2018). Adaptive gamification for learning environments. IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies, 12(1), pp. 16-28. https://doi.org/10.1109/TLT.2018.2823710.

Lazar, J., Feng, J. H. and Hochheiser, H. (2017). Research methods in human-computer interaction, United States, Morgan Kaufmann.

Lune, H. and Berg, B. L. (2017). Qualitative research methods for the social sciences, London, Pearson. pp. 277-290.

Marczewski, A. (2015). Even Ninja Monkeys Like to Play: Gamification, Game Thinking & Motivational Design, London, Blurb Inc. pp. 165-177.

Morschheuser, B., Hamari, J. and Koivisto, J. (2016). Gamification in crowdsourcing: a review. 49th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS), USA, IEEE. pp. 4375-4384.

Nelson, P. (2015). Designing Branching Narrative. Available from: https://thestoryelement.wordpress.com/2015/02/11/designing-branching-narrative/. [Accessed in: Oct, 2022].

Ofosu-Ampong, K. and Boateng, R. (2018). Gamifying Sakai: Understanding Game Elements for Learning. Twenty-fourth Americas Conference on Information Systems, New Orleans. pp. 1-10.

Papamitsiou, Z., Pappas, I. O., Sharma, K. and Giannakos, M. N. (2020). Utilizing multimodal data through fsQCA to explain engagement in adaptive learning. IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies, 13(4), pp. 689-703.

Pornsakulvanich, V., Dumrongsiri, N., Sajampun, P., Sornsri, S., John, S. P., Sriyabhand, T., Nuntapanich, C., Chantarawandi, C., Wongweeranonchai, P. and Jiradilok, S. (2012). An analysis of personality traits and learning styles as predictors of academic performance. ABAC journal, 32(3), pp. 1-19.

Rahman, M., Noor, A. Z. and Salleh, N. S. (2018). Gamification elements and their impacts on teaching and learning–A review. The International Journal of Multimedia & Its Applications, 10(6), pp. 37-46. https://doi.org/10.5121/ijma.2018.10604.

Rapeepisarn, K., Wong, K. W., Fung, C. C. and Khine, M. S. (2008). The Relationship between Game Genres, Learning Techniques and Learning Styles in Educational Computer Games. In: Z. Pan, X. Zhang, A. El Rhalibi, W. Woo and Y. Li (eds.) Technologies for E-Learning and Digital Entertainment. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer. pp. 497-508.

Santos, A. C., Zambalde, A. L., Veroneze, R. B., Botelho, G. A. and Souza Bermejo, P. H. (2015). Open innovation and social participation: A case study in public security in Brazil. International conference on electronic government and the information systems perspective, Cham, Springer. pp. 163-176.

Shirsekar, S. S. (2019). Learning Through Gaming? In: A. Chakrabarti (ed.) Research into Design for a Connected World. Singapore: Springer. pp. 901-911.

Siddiquei, N. and Khalid, R. (2018). The relationship between personality traits, learning styles and academic performance of e-learners. Open Praxis, 10(3), pp. 249-263.

Subhash, S. and Cudney, E. A. (2018). Gamified learning in higher education: A systematic review of the literature. Computers in Human Behavior, 87, 192-206. https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2018.05.028.

Toda, A. M., Valle, P. H. D. and Isotani, S. (2018). The Dark Side of Gamification: An Overview of Negative Effects of Gamification in Education. In: A. I. Cristea, I. I. Bittencourt and F. Lima (eds.) Higher Education for All. From Challenges to Novel Technology-Enhanced Solutions. Cham: Springer International Publishing. pp. 143-156.

Tondello, G. F., Mora, A., Marczewski, A. and Nacke, L. E. (2019). Empirical validation of the gamification user types hexad scale in English and Spanish. International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, 127, pp. 95-111. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhcs.2018.10.002.

Tondello, G. F. and Nacke, L. E. (2018). Towards Customizing Gameful Systems by Gameful Design Elements, Canada, HCI Games Group, University of Waterloo. pp. 102-110.

Tondello, G. F., Wehbe, R. R., Diamond, L., Busch, M., Marczewski, A. and Nacke, L. E. (2016). The gamification user types hexad scale. Proceedings of the 2016 annual symposium on computer-human interaction in play, USA, ACM. pp. 229-243.

Vaismoradi, M. and Snelgrove, S. (2019). Theme in qualitative content analysis and thematic analysis. Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung/Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 20(3). https://doi.org/10.17169/fqs-20.3.3376.

Zahra, B., Fahimnia, F., Naghshineh, N. and Mirhosseini, F. (2019). Gamified e-learning in higher education: A systematic review of the literature. Journal of Technology Education 13(4), pp. 875 - 887.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21622/ACE.2022.02.2.096


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2022 Sara Elshorbagy, Nada Sherief, Walid Abdelmoez

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

Advances in Computing and Engineering
E-ISSN: 2735-5985
P-ISSN: 2735-5977

Published by:

Academy Publishing Center (APC)
Arab Academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport (AASTMT)
Alexandria, Egypt