Video: "Science of Motivation: How Gamification Drives Psychology


(Bo McGuffee) #1

Neuroscience. This is the stuff that gets my attention these days, and this is what I want to know more about. How are chemical interactions in the brain related to how we process information and respond to situations?

I stumbled upon this thirteen-minute vid and wanted to share it. I really like the way Andrea Kuszewskie explains why gamification works (or doesn’t). While I won’t be able to make it to NY, I figure maybe I can contribute to the “tactical psychology” endeavor by sharing here.


(Sarah Hawk) #2

Excellent video, I agree.

I love the term ‘badgification’. I totally agree with her on that (putting badges on something doesn’t make it gamification).

My takeout: Everyone is motivated by something. Our job is to figure out what that is for our audience


(Bo McGuffee) #3

Yeah, I chuckled at “badgification”. So true.

When I work with clients for dog training, I tell them there is a difference between what they see as a “reward” for a behavior and what acts as a “reinforcer” for the dog’s behavior. By definition, a “reinforcer” is anything that causes a behavior to increase. The goal is to identify desired behaviors, and then to reinforce them. If a “reward” is given for a desired behavior and it doesn’t increase, then the “reward” isn’t really a “reinforcer”.


(Sarah Hawk) #4

Is that because what the trainer and the dog see as a reward are different things, or because there are genuine rewards that don’t act as reinforcers?


Gamification strategies and framework
(Bo McGuffee) #5

Simple answer: mainly the former. I use language that differentiates the two during training, because I want clients to start thinking through their canine companion’s perspective. It’s not about whether they are giving something to their dog for behavior; it’s whether the dog desires it enough to motivate future behavior. By using language that distinguishes the two, I’m influencing the way they process information during training, which affects their meaning-making systems. People do what is meaningful, and they avoid what is meaningless. Utilizing reinforces becomes meaningful, and giving rewards becomes (potentially) meaningless (and at the very least less meaningful). When it comes to the dynamics of meaning, change the language and you change the game.

Complex answer: sort of both. They are two different functional descriptions and I prefer to keep them separate to emphasize the contextual dynamics. If I give a dog a food treat as a “thank you” for behavior, then it is a reward. It doesn’t have to increase future behavior. If I am able to use it to increase future behavior, then it is an identifiable reinforcer. It only remains a reinforcer as long as it remains desirable. If I keep feeding a dog food because it has been a proven reinforcer, but the dog becomes full and doesn’t want any more, then getting the dog to take the tidbit when s/he doesn’t want it, then the reward can actually become aversive (which moves into punishment, which decreases future behavior). So, the reward that was an identifiable reinforcer can become a punisher if used incorrectly.


(Nick Emmett) #6

This is great Bo @irreverance , thanks for sharing - Just getting through it now.