Mixing decades of corporate training know-how and lots of video game playing fun, Gamelearn develops online game-based learning products for soft skills training. Our game-based learning solutions improve life’s highly valued skills. Negotiation and time management are soft skills, as opposed to technical or occupational skills. Such skills are increasingly demanded by employers, and desired by employees. In fact, these skills may be more important over the longer term than technical or occupational skills. We believe this to be globally true. Because of their nature, improving these soft skills is incredible difficult and requires us to build sophisticated, complex game-based simulations.
For companies and individuals seeking skills improvement, we offer a unique solution that delivers learning quality comparable to effective classroom learning but online so the solution is scalable and cost-effective. Each of our solutions draws on the highest quality pedagogical underpinning presented in an innovative game-based format so learning and user completion are propelled by gamification elements.
We began creating our solutions before game-based learning and gamification were common terms, as they have become. In this regard, we are proud to say we realize the promise of game-based learning and lead the market in providing soft skills training products through interactive adventure video games.
Gamelearn is a leading developer of off-the-shelf serious games played to improve soft skills. The term serious games refers to the use of videogame for purposes other than entertainment, such as corporate training and employee learning and development. We refer to the methodology used in Gamelearn’s serious games as g-learning or game-learning. G-learning refers to the combination of four key elements: Gamification, game-based learning, simulation and theoretical contents.
Gamelearn’s serious games are based on solid, state-of-the art theoretical content, which is learned through game play as the user practices and applies what is being taught. This happens because Gamelearn’s video games incorporate a sophisticated simulator enabling students to learn from their own experience, mistakes and successes.
Gamelearn’s serious games focus on soft skills training. In order to be improved, soft skills require practice and development and the use of serious games provides an especially successful way of improving soft skills. Because of the incorporation of a complex simulator, students receive constant feedback so they can learn from their decisions, successes and mistakes.
Game-based learning refers to the use of game elements in training. Gamelearn uses game-based learning methodology on its educational or learning video games, Merchants and Triskelion. In both courses, players are immersed in a thrilling learning adventure that teaches through an engaging story. Students learn applicable theory in a fun and safe video game environment.
Game based learning combines gamification elements that enhance motivation and knowledge retention. Another key element in Gamelearn’s game-based learning products is a complex simulator, which allows students to interact with the game, and practice life-like interactions in a safe environment.
Gamification is a popular buzz word now, including in training and development departments. Gamification refers to the use of game elements in order to create more dynamic and effective environments. Gamification is a key element in Gamelearn’s game-based learning solutions. Through the use of gamification elements, such as badges, trophies and leaderboards, Gamelearn’s game-based video games are dynamic and engaging. Other gamification features include the use of scores tracking student progression; different levels, puzzles or challenges that need to be overcome; and rankings showing where students are in the course and relative to their colleagues. These gamification elements enhance competition, engagement and commitment, resulting in very high course completion rates.
The simulator is the core of Gamelearn’s serious games. The simulator enables the interaction between the student and the video game and, accordingly, facilitates skills development. In essence, the simulator acts as a virtual instructor, and ensures that learning improvement occurs.
Game-based training refers to learning experienced by playing a game, including a video game.
In the context of a video game, game based training integrates course content propelled by an engaging narrative within an attractive video game in order to motivate the learner to complete the course.
Game-based training is distinguished because:
1. Learning takes place through player involvement in engaging and immersive scenarios
2. Learning happens as the player overcomes different challenges
3. Learning is a positive and interesting experience, positively reinforced by game-like features such as prizes and scoreboards.
Consequently, game-based training products result in higher student completion rates.
In order to deliver effective, experiential learning, Gamelearn game-based training products are built using a complex simulator, which creates an interactive environment allowing students to put skills into practice. This experiential learning, in turn, increases retention of the subject matter being learned since the student is able to apply what is being taught.
Game based training incorporates gamification elements. Gamification elements, by themselves however, are not the same as game-based training. Gamification refers to the different elements that gamify the course, like badges, scores, levels, competition, and prizes; while game-based learning refers to the complete experience, including the game itself and its narrative features.
Well done game-based learning can address a variable of subjects, including soft skills training. Because of their complex nature, soft skills are best learned by doing and not based on theory alone. Before the existence of game-base training products addressing soft skills learning, soft skills were traditionally acquired through in-class room training where instructors conducted participant role plays. Trough role play, instructors provided personalized feedback to participations so as to ensure the soft skill was practiced and learnt.
Through the use of an online video game, a complex simulator allows the player to engage in the learned skill and get instantaneous and personalized feedback, in much the same way that a class instructor would. The advantage, however, is the simulator interacts only with one player and therefore the feedback happens more directly and often.
Additionally, because there are no physical classroom limitations, game based video training allows for an efficient scalable learning solution. Competing strongly with the learning quality of in-class room training, but at a fraction of the cost.
Game-based learning in corporate training
Corporate training is facing major challenges. Employees are no longer engaging with traditional forms of training including e-learning, finding the whole experience unexciting and boring. Compounding this situation is the growing numbers of ‘millennials’ entering the workforce.
The workforce is changing
The X generation, close to its retirement is being replaced for a new workforce generation called the ""Millennials"". They have new common traits that define the way they face their job and processes. Millennials are those individuals born between the early 1980s to the early 2000s. They have grown up in a time where information has become available instantly. Millennials are creating a change in how work gets done, as they work more in teams and use more technology. Millennials are well educated, skilled in technology, very self-confident, able to multi-task, and have plenty of energy. They have high expectations for themselves, and prefer to work in teams, rather than as individuals. Millennials grown up in the video game era, an era with constant stimuli and dynamism. Some facts about the use of videogames are the following:
- 58% of the population play video games
- Average age of players is 30 years old
- By age of 18, 90% of population have played video games (an average of 10 000 hours
- Millennials are 30 % of the today's workforce and in 10 years they will be the 75%.
GBL - Game-based learning
GBL is a new training methodology in which contents are presented in a videogame format. GBL is challenging, interesting and engaging. The learning process is more effective, games improve knowledge acquisition and retention. With games, students are able to put into practice the theory, so they learn by doing, in a zero risk environment.
GBL improves problem-solving, creativity, risk assessment, and risk taking. GBL ensures learning, Students have to learn the theory in order to progress in the game. So when they finish the course they are ready to put the sklills into practice in a real situation.
While e-learning traditional courses are boring and not engaging, GBL is a dynamic, interactive and efficient way that responds to the needs of a new workforce, the Milennials.
Gamification for corporate training
Gamification, which has become a favored buzz word, is being introduced in different areas and ways by companies. In marketing for example gamification has being used in loyalty programs with different client cards depending the points gathered flying with a particular airline.
Gamification has become also an important element in corporate training as a way deployed by instructors to increase participant motivation during the learning process.
In online training formats, the use of gamification elements is getting increasingly common place. By incorporating gamification (or game-like) elements in a virtual learning environment, content designers seek to ensure participants will progress through the learning experience or course.
Gamification, in brief, makes the learning process more motivating and engaging. By itself, however, the use of gamification has nothing to do with the appearance and structure of the course. If the course is built around poor learning content, such as the use of non-interactive PowerPoint formats, then the benefits of gamification elements are wasted and have little impact on the ability to of students to learn.
In order to optimize the benefits of gamification, companies have integrated these elements in video game formats or courses. In this video game medium, the impact of gamification elements and, accordingly, the positive attitude created in students to complete a course is put to full use. Along with gamification elements, video games used for learning purposes include a story that engages students so they learn the subject matter content and also have an opportunity to interact with the game and practice what is being learned.
In a new era of corporate training, frequently concepts like gamification and game-based learning are used as synonyms. While both enhance motivation and engagement, only the game-based learning aspect is linked to the cognitive-improvement area of the course where the learning and development happens; gamification simply refers to the techniques used to increase motivation, make training fun, engage students and improve completion rates. In brief, the quality of game-based learning courses depends on it the quality of the course content and on the level of interaction that allow students to practice and learn.
Game-based learning for soft skills
Soft skills are personal attributes which enable effective individual interactions and, accordingly, enhance career prospects and job performance. Game-based learning products are especially suited to soft skills training because of the way soft skills are developed. Specifically, soft skills have to be practiced in order to be learned. In traditional instructor-led training, the instructor would have participants engage in role play and other activities so as to practice and learn soft skills.
With the advent of online game-based learning, students are able to do the same in a virtual world unharnessed by physical limitations like a classroom.
In the context of a video game, game based learning refers to the combination of a video game, a story line and a simulator. The video game and the storyline make the course more engaging, and the simulator facilitates the interaction between the course and the student.
Game-based learning ensures skills learning because students are able to put skills into practice and leaning from their own situations, decisions, and mistakes. Improving soft skills, like communicating skills is really hard to do by, or example, just reading a manual. Readers learn the techniques do not actually acquire the skill itself. In a game-based learning format students overcome different game levels and, through this process, the game ensures each level of delivered educational content is actually learned. In short, the student learns the skill by practicing and improving, so at the end of the course he will be able to put the skill into practice in a real situation.
Game based learning ensures not only skills learning but also build self confidence. During the game, which by its one-to-one nature is “safe”, a player understand how to use the skills and how to apply them in the different situations created by the simulator.
By creating their own responses to the game, students acquire new knowledge in the same way that they would do in real world but in a safe and zero risk environment.
Serious games for corporate training
Serious games or educational games, are games designed for a primary purpose other than pure entertainment. Originally serious games were designed for technical skills development, in sectors like medicine, military or aviation. The use of serious games in corporate training is relatively recent, however it is forecasted to be one of the fastest growing sectors of the training industry.
Well-designed serious (educational) games make learning fun, challenging and rewarding. Learners
don’t realize they are learning when engaged in a game. Serious games are used to train adults in a variety of subjects. Despite the fact that it is a relatively new term in the training industry, the results have already been very positive. Serious games enhance knowledge acquisition and skills development by introducing the learner to different situations, challenges and problems and therefore makes it possible to learning to occur.
In the context of a video game, serious games are the result of the use of a game-based methodology in a video game format. Serious games through video games create real situations in a virtual world so skills can be trained in a zero risk and secure environment.
The use of serious games in corporate training is increasingly focused on soft skills training. Soft skills have to be practiced in order to improve or be developed; there is no way of learning soft skills if they are not practiced.
In corporate training, soft skills development are an especially important and complex area. Before the development of serious games, classroom training was the only way to develop soft skills since traditional e-learning and its reliance on one way slide shows and videos was too theoretical, lacked the necessary interaction to train employees in skills like communication, leadership, negotiation, which require require practice to develop.