Gamification Panel

March 15, 2016 • 2:00pm–3:30pm • 3105 Tolman

Center on the Developing Adolescent

The next event for the Center on the Developing Adolescent will be a Gamification Panel: Melina Uncampher is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Neurology at Stanford University, Elizabeth Ozer is a Professor of Pediatrics at UCSF, Sandi McCoy is an Assistant Adjunct Professor of Epidemiology at UC Berkeley School of Public Health, and Raluca Buzdugan is a Research Scientist in the UC Berkeley School of Public Health.

Gamification Panel Description

Gamification, the use of game design elements in non-game contexts, maximizes adolescents’ desire for arousing experiences in social contexts. Gamification creatively modifies positive attitudes towards activities that individuals are unmotivated to undertake by embedding them in game-like environments. Many components of gamification draw upon developmentally informed behavior change strategies. Specifically, gamified interventions leverage adolescents’ sensitivity to social context by involving collaboration and/or competition among players and their enhanced reward processing by awarding points, prizes or other rewards for targeted outcomes. Games also provide a virtual context for novel learning so adolescents have the opportunity to test out some decision making trajectories and learn from experiencing positive or negative outcomes. Drawing on self-determination theory, external rewards used in gamification (i.e., points, badges, leaderboard position) become internalized and motivate people by leveraging their basic needs for autonomy, cooperation, competition. Gamification has been used to address a range of adolescent health topics including sexual health, classroom behavior, substance use and violence prevention, and depression. In partnership with an exciting team of panelists, Ron Dahl will discuss the unique opportunities for applying gamification principles in interventions and programs for adolescents.

Panelists

Raluca Buzdugan is a Research Scientist in the UC Berkeley School of Public Health. She as a growing interest in applications of innovative behavior change strategies — such as gamification — to health interventions, with a focus on HIV prevention and reproductive and maternal health. She is currently applying gamification principles in low-resource settings, including Mexico and Zimbabwe.

Sandi McCoy is an Assistant Adjunct Professor of Epidemiology at UC Berkeley School of Public Health. Her research focuses on HIV and STIs with a specific emphasis on food insecurity, health disparities, economic empowerment and impact evaluation. She has become interest in how gamification principles can be integrated into interventions.

Elizabeth Ozer is a Professor of Pediatrics, the Co-Director of the Fellows Research Training in the Division of Adolescent Medicine, and the Director of Research & Evaluation for the Office of Diversity and Outreach at UCSF. She is interested in using interactive technology and gamification in preventive interventions to promote competence and healthy behavior in adolescents.

Melina Uncampher is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Neurology at Stanford University. She investigates whether technology and media are associated with cognitive and neural differences and using fMRI and behavioral assessment of media use and cognitive functioning.