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Press Release

A Chat with Karl Kapp


Thu May 09 2013


Below is a chat with Karl Kapp author of, The Gamification of Learning and Instruction a Wiley title co-published with ASTD. Don’t miss Karl’s chat “Talk’n About Games, Gamification, and Interactivity for Learning” will be on Tuesday at 3pm. He will also sign copies of his book on Wednesday at 12pm.

A Chat with Karl Kapp-9fce9002a08bbdbe400110c084413b95821ed0304fd7eec1ac7a05584b9d4987

Please provide a brief summary of your chat:


I am going to talk about game-thinking and game elements for instructional design, I am going to answer questions, provide stories and give insights into what type of game elements can be used to enhance e-learning and classroom instruction and chat about examples I have seen that are effective. However, what I'd really like to do is answer questions and enter into a dialogue with chat attendees. I truly want this to be a discussion where questions, concerns and curiosities can be answered about the subject of games and gamification. Ask me about my favorite games, my son's favorite games or about how to beat Civilization V or about creating a game to teach corporate values, the topics will be driven by the chat attendees.

How is your perspective on this topic different from what else is out there?

My perspective on "gamification" specifically is different because I tend to lean toward the elements of stories, challenges, continual feedback, and freedom to fail as the elements of gamification that I think are most exciting. A number of gamification efforts focus only on points or rewards which aren't as intriguing or interesting as stories, challenges, and other more critical game elements. I also believe that intrinsic and extrinsic motivators live side-by-side in harmony. This is not a common view. I also think, “Games Teach!” which also is a somewhat controversial statement I have grown to learn.

What should readers of your book come away with?

Three things. One is that games do teach. I use a number of research studies to support the claim that games can and do teach. Two, even though games teach, we don't need to create an entire, huge and expensive game to get our message across, we can use game elements, game-thinking and game design when we create elearning and still get some pretty powerful results. So an organization that can't afford a hugely expensive game development effort can, indeed, afford to add game elements in the design process and still create an engaging experience for the learner. Three, the idea that "I can do this." If you have designed instruction, you can leverage that knowledge to create a gamification experience.


What should people know about you?

As a professor of instructional technology, I really enjoy sharing my knowledge and experiences with others. I try to constantly share my ideas in my Kapp Notes blog, articles and through presentations so I enjoy speaking with people about games and gamification. I get excited about the subject and I want others to get excited as well. Also, I really enjoy playing lots of different types of games.

 What do you like best about ICE?

The vibrant nature of the conference, the opportunity to meet new people and reconnect with old friends and former students. The ability to see all the relevant vendors in one location and great chance to sit down to lunch or bump into someone and have an informal, meaningful conversation. I learn something at every ICE conference I attend and it is most often from a great informal conversation with someone whom I've never met before.

Why did you choose to publish a book? If you published with ASTD why?


My book is co-published with ASTD and I couldn't be more excited. ASTD is such a vibrant group of learning and development professionals having ASTD co-publish provided a great opportunity to let as many people as possible know about the book and the idea of gamification as possible. The distribution channel is wonderful and the members are wonderful.

What is your favorite ASTD or business book? Why?

I really like Tom Peters, I have devoured many of his books and have shared them with my students, and I also really like Jesse Schell's The Art of Game Design. The favorite I have written is my "Gadgets, Games and Gizmos for Learning." The book is a little dated now but I had so much fun crafting that book. It was a joy to write. I'd love to have the chance to update that book someday with a second revision.

Join Karl’s chat Tuesday May 21st in the Bookstore and connect with him on Twitter @kkapp or LinkedIn.

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