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IJIET 2023 Vol.13(4): 757-762
doi: 10.18178/ijiet.2023.13.4.1864

Addressing the Dilemma of Online Gamification with Subgame Perfect Equilibria

Darren Lim, Mageswaran Sanmugam*, and Wan Ahmad Jaafar Wan Yahaya

Abstract—Gamification, a concept originally derived from games, is defined as the extraction and inclusion of game mechanics within ordinary activities. Applying gamification to the educational context had surged over the past decade due to the recognition of the potential in motivating, promoting engagement, and enhancing student performance. The current study sought to overcome three dilemmas, including gamified depths, online gamification, and interaction, when gamifying the online learning environment through game theory, which investigates the arising conflict and collaboration among logical and intelligent decision-makers. This study used learning analytics based on the qualitative data collected from 57 undergraduates from the School of Educational Studies by exposing the students to gamified and non-gamified e-learning environments throughout eight weeks. By scrutinising the online gamification dilemma as a sequential game, the perfect equilibrium or Nash equilibrium at each subgame can be achieved using backward induction with synchronous online shallow gamification (4,6) and asynchronous online shallow gamification (3,5) as the optimal outcome. Hence, shallow gamification would allow players’ payoff maximization even when the asynchronous approach was selected, compared to asynchronous deep gamification.

Index Terms—Dilemma, education, gamification, game theory

The authors are with the Centre for Instructional Technology, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Gelugor, Malaysia.
*Correspondence: mageswaran@usm.my (M.S.)


Cite: Darren Lim, Mageswaran Sanmugam*, and Wan Ahmad Jaafar Wan Yahaya, "Addressing the Dilemma of Online Gamification with Subgame Perfect Equilibria," International Journal of Information and Education Technology vol. 13, no. 4, pp. 757-762, 2023.

Copyright © 2023 by the authors. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

General Information

  • ISSN: 2010-3689 (Online)
  • Abbreviated Title: Int. J. Inf. Educ. Technol.
  • Frequency: Monthly
  • DOI: 10.18178/IJIET
  • Editor-in-Chief: Prof. Dr. Steve Thatcher
  • Executive Editor: Ms. Nancy Y. Liu
  • Abstracting/ Indexing: Scopus (CiteScore 2022: 2.0), INSPEC (IET), UGC-CARE List (India), CNKI, EBSCO, Google Scholar
  • E-mail: ijiet@ejournal.net


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