Sunday, November 16, 2014

"Gamifying Your Classroom" by Fady Morcos

 By Karim Abdel Kodos and Nada El Nakoury

Cairo, Egypt - The Center for Learning and Teaching (CLT), organized a  faculty workshop under the name of  “Gamifying Your Classroom”, by the facilitator Fady Morcos, on Tuesday,  Nov. 4, about using games as a tool, not only to solve problems around student motivation and engagement, but also to enhance their experience.
In an effort to reach more students, the CLT at The American University in Cairo introduced a new teaching technique under the name “Gamifying your Classroom.”

According to the event description, “Gamifying Your Classroom” will integrate game-thinking technique in classrooms that could promote active learning, and enhance student interest and engagement.

Integration of game-thinking techniques Adding a “game layer” to a syllabus, course policies, workload, grading system, and learning material can generate products that are very engaging and influential to both the player (student) and the developer of the gamified experience.

According to Maha Bali, associate professor of practice at CLT, the workshop, which was held at AUC New Campus Library, was their most attended workshop.

She also talked about the role of the (CLT) in always updating professors with new techniques, and how they can facilitate workshops according to certain departments and their needs.

The presentation was mainly about boosting the motivation and engagement of the students.

“I’m in the process of gamifying the whole thing for my classes, but at this point, I’m trying to use different tools to test different things to know how they work,” said Morcos.

On the other hand, when Morcos was asked to what extent does he think such applications are effective, he said that it’s important but it’s not the only answer.
“It’s a tool, if you look at the goals that you want to achieve in education, you will see that games have been successful in achieving all those goals, so it’s just a different domain,” Morcos added.
Some professors realized they have already been doing this in their classes. They enjoyed the workshop because they knew how exactly it should be applied.
“I found it very useful and refreshing, but I would’ve liked to have more sessions even one to one because it went really fast."  
About the capability of AUC professors to apply such techniques, he said that it’s like any other application and it needs training.
“It requires a little bit of work in the beginning when you start teaching it at class, but then, I think it pays off dramatically,” said Morcos.

Although it needs some time for the professors to get used to such technique, Morcos thinks that gamifying the classrooms will have a great impact on the motivation and engagement of students.

1 comment:

  1. Well done Amina! I think Putting effort and trying to schedule an appointment with the professor shows that you really care about the course and it also show that you're willing to put effort towards your interests.