July 25, 2023

Modern, motivating, and anything but boring – that is how e-learning should be designed. Gamification is a way to convey content in an inspiring and challenging way. This blog article explains how gamification works and why it is so important for e-learning.

E-learning has become an integral part of people development. Finding ways to motivate participants and support them in their development process is particularly important with digital formats. How can organizations improve the user experience and promote the joy of developing? One way to stimulate the motivation of participants and foster higher completion rates is through gamification.

What does gamification even mean?

The term gamification describes playful content that can be found in many aspects of everyday life and is intended to increase or maintain the motivation of users. This principle is not only used in the e-learning sector, other businesses also use elements such as bonus programs or progress bars to keep engagement high.

What theories support gamification?

One basis for gamification is the self-determination theory of Edward Deci and Richard Ryan. According to them, three basic psychological needs must be met for intrinsic motivation.


Effective and successful interaction


Freedom of choice and options for action


Belonging to a group

Gamification can ideally fulfill these needs and thus contribute to intrinsic motivation.

Csikszentmihalyi’s flow theory offers further insights into the effects of gamification. It deals with the flow state in which people are immersed in their tasks and experience joy in the process. This deepened flow state is influenced by the needs and abilities of the individual. It is important that there is neither a state of being overwhelmed or anxious, nor a state of boredom.


Gamification elements can promote the flow state because they provide participants with stimuli and make the development process more varied. On the other hand, content can be broken down and conveyed in manageable chunks, thus preventing overload.

Why is it important to choose e-learning with gamification?

Gamification offers numerous advantages and opportunities in the field of people development. The goal is to help employees remember the content long-term, without the feeling of having worked hard for it. Different interactions and tasks are designed to draw the attention of the users, which supports engagement and therefore the development of the employees. Gamification in the e-learning context ensures that participants can absorb offered content better, concentrate on it longer, and it improves their user experience compared to one-sided methods. A varied and playful development process can increase the motivation and engagement of users.

What are examples for gamification elements in e-learning?

Whether it is quizzes, learning nuggets, interactive videos, simulations, surveys, or achievements: there are many elements that can make personal development playful and immersive. Here you find a small selection that we use on our platform and in our learning programs.

A, B, C or D? – Quizzes

Quizzes allow you to test and deepen your knowledge in a targeted way and are also a lot of fun! Not without reason are quizzes popular with all age groups. With different media used, quizzes become a creative tool to lighten up content and make it more practical for users.


Keeping track – Progress bar

Having an overview and feeling like you are progressing: Progress bars make this possible. They give users the opportunity to transparently track their own development path and foster motivated anticipation of milestones. In addition, this visualization can contribute to the previously mentioned flow state.

Highlight successes – Visual gimmicks

Progress bars are not the only way to visualize milestones. On our learning platform, users can look forward to a very special surprise effect: confetti rain! With this element, users can celebrate their learning progress and at the same time receive encouragement for what they have achieved. In addition, these sequences provide a little break between the modules.


Small content with big impact – Challenges

Long sections can be exhausting for users in the long run. This can be remedied by challenges that stimulate the user’s own thought process and help them to put what they have learned into practice. Through hands-on exercises, participants can remember content better and apply it to their own practical situations.

If you want to learn more about our approach to implementing gamification in e-learning, take a look at our learning programs, or have an exchange with our L&D consultants. No obligations – you can simply create a free demo account or schedule a meeting.

Vanessa Chodak
Content Manager
Als Teil des Content Teams gestaltet Vanessa die Inhalte der troodi Lernprogramme. Dabei bringt sie ihre Kreativität sowohl bei redaktionellen als auch visuellen Inhalten ein und überlegt sich Gamification-Elemente. Als Grundlage dient ihr ein Master in Literatur- und Sprachwissenschaft sowie diverse Erfahrungen im Online-Redaktionsbereich.


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