Gamification Agile Software for Classroom Projects
Bhavyaka Kolli Manoj Deverapalli
Cyrus Azarbod Sarah L. Klammer Kruse
Minnesota State University, Mankato
Abstract Agile software development methodology is becoming more commonly taught in academic settings to help students learn to break down project tasks and work effectively in teams using the talents of individuals to collectively accomplish project goals. When gamification is incorporated into education, learning opportunities are expanded as students are “hooked by fun and then rewarded with knowledge and skills” (Arnold, 2014). Combined, they create a playing field for engagement, learning, and accountability. In this research project, a Gamification Agile Software (GAS) system was designed and developed for use with within the graduate classroom environment to incorporate Agile software development methodology, teams, and project-based learning while allowing the instructor to monitor sprint planning, identification of tasks for scrums leading to each sprint, estimation of task duration in comparison with actual task completion, and reward success or identify weaknesses within team or student performance. Accountability of task completion is much more transparent in an Agile environment and can also reveal when individuals are not performing well in comparison to others. One way “to incentivize everyone to strive for more” is by adopting an “in-process approach that rewards best performance and creates awareness of such achievements” (Sharma, Kaulgud, & Duraisamy, 2016). Gamification is one technique that has the potential to create in-process rewards while using an agile approach. A gamification strategy was incorporated into the GAS system’s design to increase student participation, engagement, evaluation, and completion of course projects. Within this strategy, the students earn coins as they complete their tasks and can spend the coins based on pre-defined rewards established by the instructor. Within the course, projects are assigned to teams. The instructor breaks the project down into series of components, and each component into series of modules. The instructor identifies sprints and assigns due dates for the various components and modules. Once assigned, student teams plan and complete the projects using Agile methodology. Students plan and select tasks that can be accomplished to meet the requirement(s) of each instructor-defined sprint. Tasks are limited to a 2-4 hour duration, requiring the students to break down each task into small, manageable pieces. Based on this planning, students set up a minimum of two scrums per week and track accomplishments within the software system. The software system is then used to track task completion. The software also provides a portal that enables each student to log in and access project components, keep track of tasks, compare actual hours worked on the task with estimated hours, and view coins received for successful aspects of their project. The software system is also valuable to the instructor because it clearly identifies what students have accomplished and areas where they are having difficulties. Reports are designed to identify tasks the students are struggling to accomplish, document the amount of time spent on planning, and indicate how well the team make up is working. Using this information, lecture and assignment instructions can be modified to expedite student learning and enable them to succeed.
Arnold, B. J. (2014). Gamification in education. ASBBS Proceedings, 21(1) 32-39. Retrieved from http://ezproxy.mnsu.edu/login?url=https://search.proquest.com/docview/1519057772?accountid=12259 (American Society of Business and Behavioral Sciences)
Sharma, V. S., Kaulgud, V., and Duraisamy, P. (2016). A gamification approach for distributed agile delivery. Proceedings of the 5th International Workshop on Games and Software Engineering (GAS '16). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 42-45. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1145/2896958.2896966
Recommended Citation: Kolli, B., Deverapalli, M., Azarbod, C., Klammer Kruse, S. L., (2017). Gamification Agile Software for Classroom Projects. Proceedings of the EDSIG Conference, (2017) n.4491, Austin, Texas