Changing the way science is taught through gamified laboratories

Mads Bonde, G. Makransky, J. Wandall, Mette Voldby Larsen, M. Morsing, Hanne Østergaard Jarmer, A. Lopez-Cordoba, Morten Otto Alexander Sommer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review


A large proportion of high school and college students indicate that they have little interest in science, and many graduate with marginal science competencies. However, laboratory exercises, usually the most engaging part of science courses, tend to be expensive, time consuming and occasionally constrained by safety concerns. Combining gamification elements with simulations may provide an opportunity for great gains in learning effectiveness and motivation of biotech students. An advanced laboratory simulation platform based on mathematical algorithms supporting open-ended investigations was developed and combined with gamification elements such as an immersive 3D universe, storytelling, conversations with fictional characters and a scoring system. Two gamified laboratory simulations were tested: a crime-scene lab and a genetic engineering lab ( A study testing the crime-scene case in an introductory, college-level, life science course was conducted revealed that a gamified laboratory simulation can significantly increase both learning outcomes and motivation levels when compared with, and particularly when combined with, traditional teaching.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEDULEARN15 Proceedings
Number of pages7
Publication date2015
ISBN (Print)978-84-606-8243-1
Publication statusPublished - 2015
EventThe 7th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies - Barcelona, Spain
Duration: 6 Jul 20158 Jul 2015


ConferenceThe 7th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies


  • Virtual laboratories
  • Gamification
  • Biotechnology
  • Science


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