Autonomous, Self-Paced Quest-Based Learning: Is it More Motivating than Traditional Course Instruction?
Abstract: Quest-based learning (QBL), which includes features of gamification like experience points, levels, and leaderboards, holds much potential for engaging 21st century students in their learning. If student motivation and learning can be increased by using external rewards, then QBL might offer a viable solution for reaching and retaining more college students. This research compared the effects of QBL and traditional class instruction on students’ motivation. Results did not indicate that a QBL was any more motivating than the traditional setting and only rewards that were associated with grades were considered important to the learning process. Findings suggest that it may be just as viable to design a course with the successful features of a QBL without including an elaborate reward system. However, it is promising that students are more motivated by self-paced instruction rather than by external rewards.