Student perceptions of gamified audience response system interactions in large group lectures and via lecture capture technology Approaches to teaching and learning

Robin K. Pettit, Lise McCoy, Marjorie Kinney, Frederic N. Schwartz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

64 Scopus citations


Background: Higher education students have positive attitudes about the use of audience response systems (ARS), but even technology-enhanced lessons can become tiresome if the pedagogical approach is exactly the same with each implementation. Gamification is the notion that gaming mechanics can be applied to routine activities. In this study, TurningPoint (TP) ARS interactions were gamified and implemented in 22 large group medical microbiology lectures throughout an integrated year 1 osteopathic medical school curriculum. Methods: A 32-item questionnaire was used to measure students' perceptions of the gamified TP interactions at the end of their first year. The survey instrument generated both Likert scale and open-ended response data that addressed game design and variety, engagement and learning features, use of TP questions after class, and any value of lecture capture technology for reviewing these interactive presentations. The Chi Square Test was used to analyze grouped responses to Likert scale questions. Responses to open-ended prompts were categorized using open-coding. Results: Ninety-one students out of 106 (86 %) responded to the survey. A significant majority of the respondents agreed or strongly agreed that the games were engaging, and an effective learning tool. The questionnaire investigated the degree to which specific features of these interactions were engaging (nine items) and promoted learning (seven items). The most highly ranked engagement aspects were peer competition and focus on the activity (tied for highest ranking), and the most highly ranked learning aspect was applying theoretical knowledge to clinical scenarios. Another notable item was the variety of interactions, which ranked in the top three in both the engagement and learning categories. Open-ended comments shed light on how students use TP questions for exam preparation, and revealed engaging and non-engaging attributes of these interactive sessions for students who review them via lecture capture. Conclusions: Students clearly valued the engagement and learning aspects of gamified TP interactions. The overwhelming majority of students surveyed in this study were engaged by the variety of TP games, and gained an interest in microbiology. The methods described in this study may be useful for other educators wishing to expand the utility of ARS in their classrooms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number92
JournalBMC Medical Education
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 12 2015


  • Audience response system
  • Clicker
  • Game
  • Gamification
  • Medical microbiology
  • TurningPoint

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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