Keep your arousal high

We often think of the responses of our body and our emotional state as linked to our performance. “My heart is racing. I am terribly nervous because I am no good at…..”. However, this is not necessarily a valid conclusion. ‘Nervous’ is a combination of a physical state (aroused) and an emotional one (anxious) which is attached to a moral judgement of your behaviour (no good). Seems logical. But the response of our body could have been attached to a different judgement, accompanied by a different emotion and it would seem just as logical. “My heart is racing. I am all pumped up and ready to go rock this….”. You still have an aroused physical state but with a positive emotion (excitement) and the moral judgement turns the other way (all good).

One of the factors determining the likelihood of you going emotionally one way or the other is your sense of self-efficacy. People with a high sense of self-efficacy tend to see arousal as some extra push by their body, a trigger to ACT. People with a low sense of self-efficacy interpret the same arousal as an obstacle. A sign to stop and sit down until the arousal goes away or even worse, they take it as a sign that their capabilities are insufficient and that they cannot possibly do this.

The advice we get to combat nervousness and plummeting self-esteem often targets our level of arousal: sit down and take a few breaths – in through your nose, down to your belly button and out your mouth. Sound familiar? You could also, perhaps more effectively, leave your arousal where it is and try to change your emotional state by focusing on what is going to make this a positive experience for you. Connect it to some core value you have, play with it and shape it in some way you would actually enjoy experiencing it.

Most importantly focus on that which YOU believe you can do – connect it to where your self-efficacy is highest and start shaping it from there. Keep your arousal high and let it work for you. Your higher heart rate makes you more alert and gives all your senses a boost to perform at their best. It is the same experience of an athlete, crouched down and ready to race.

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Does a game prompt make us excited? Small online experiment

Finally online at ResearchGate – my presentation during Berlin Playweek 2016 at the Researching Games Barcamp

The effect of a Game Prompt on Self-Efficacy concering problem solving challenges of living with Diabetes type II.


Initial results, would love to know your thoughts or comments on @ThePrisca

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Dopamine Jackpot! by Sapolsky

Sapolsky explaining why we respond so strongly to to ‘what if’ and ‘maybe’.
Part of the motivation power in gaming comes from the effect of ‘maybe’ on the dopamine system. Give chance a chance.

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Bartle’s Player Groups by Extra Creditz

Excellent explanation – not just on the taxonomy of player groups and its’ two dimensions but also on how and why the categorization came to be.

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Metacognition: Discussing a definition

‘Thinking about thinking’ had been cited by Flavell before the eighties as a “promising new area of investigation” coining the term metacognition. “Metacognition refers to one’s knowledge concerning one’s own cognitive processes and products or anything related to them. […] Metacognition refers, among other things, to the active monitoring and consequent regulation and orchestration of these processes in relation to the cognitive objects on which they bear, usually in the serve of some concrete goal or objective”. (Flavell, 1976, p. 232)

Still fuzziness continued in the fields of psychology and education around terms such as ‘strategic knowledge’. Great discrepancy existed in the definition of strategic knowledge, most apparent in the research area of problem solving, even though a debate on this issue had been in the literature for over a decade at that time.

“To some, strategies are general processes that operate across domains (e.g.,Gillingham, Garner, Guthrie, & Sawyer, 1988; Roth, 1985), whereas to others they are compilations or extensions of domain-specific knowledge  (e.g.,Chi, 1985; Rabinowitz & Chi, 1987). Furthermore, while some researchers investigate a singular strategy, such as mapping (Resnick,1982), others investigate complex, interrelated groups of strategies such as summarizing, predicting, and verifying (e.g.,Palincsar & Brown, 1984; Schoenfeld, 1985).” (Alexander & Judy, 1988, p. 381.)

After having discussed the concepts of strategic knowledge and metacognition for another two decades in the fields of cognitive research and learning theories, a need was clear for a higher level connection of concepts:

“Traditional developmental research in memory and reasoning, as well as current investigations in such disparate areas as theory of mind, epistemological understanding, knowledge acquisition, and problem solving, share the need to invoke a meta-level of cognition in explaining their respective phenomena.” (Kuhn, 2000, p. 178).

At that time there were several models and definitions of metacognition (which had replaced strategic knowledge as the umbrella term). These models and definitions are discussed, summarized and distilled in 2002 by Pintrich:

“Metacognitive knowledge includes knowledge of general strategies that might be used for different tasks, knowledge of the conditions under which these strategies might be used, knowledge of the extent to which the strategies are effective, and knowledge of self (Flavell, 1979; Pintrich et al., 2000; Schneider & Pressley, 1997).” (Pintrich, 2002).

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Workshop Spelenderwijs 6 oktober

6 oktober 2015, 10:00 – 16:30 uur, Amsterdam
Interesse in gamification? Staat u op het punt om spel serieus te gaan gebruiken? Tijdens deze workshop krijgt u een inleiding in de wereld van doelmatig spelen. U gaat naar huis met nieuwe kennis en inzichten en de juiste vragen om verder te kunnen.

De Psychologie van Game Based Learning en Gamification
Steeds vaker in educatie, HRM en productontwikkeling maakt men gebruik van spel of spelelementen. Door middel van game-based-learning, serious games, applied games, gameful design of gamification willen we allemaal gebruik maken van onze neiging to spelen.

Werkbare wetenschap
Tijdens deze intensieve dag krijgt u een beter begrip van van wat serious gaming en gamification is en wanneer het wel/niet werkt. Deze workshop biedt u een fundament in de wetenschappelijk kennis van de psychologische processen achter en onder spelstructuren.

U neemt uw eigen – abstracte of zeer specifieke – vraagstuk mee naar de workshop om mee aan de slag te gaan. Aan de hand van uw eigen vraagstuk doorlopen we gelijktijdig psychologische theorie, resultaten uit onderzoek en de mogelijkheden voor toepassing. Samen bespreken wij verschillende voorbeelden en onderzoeken we de toepassing voor uw eigen vraagstuk en de mogelijkheden voor andere deelnemers. Als deelnemer bent u tijdens de dag gestructureerd en open aan het brainstormen. U denkt mee, stelt vragen en wordt bevraagd.

De kracht van spelen in je vingers
U verkent de relevante achtergronden uit de sociale wetenschappen, krijgt kennis uit toegepaste psychologie samengevat en verrijkt uzelf met inzichten uit gaming-onderzoek.

We behandelen onder andere
– spelen, spel en spelelementen
– de leerkracht van spel
– extrinsiek vs. intrinsieke motivatie
– Self Determination Theory
– psychologisch welzijn
– Flow
– spelerstypen
– Fogg Behaviour Model
– narritiviteit
– verschillende vormen van feedback
– Points, Badges & Leaderboards.

Deelnemers en kosten
Deze workshop is gemaakt voor een volle dag voor maximaal 12 deelnemers. Kosten € 260,- per persoon (excl. btw). Inclusief catering, readers, dagverslag & follow-up. Mail naar priscillaharing[at] om u aan te melden & voor verdere vragen.

”De vraag hoe maak ik het leuk/hoe bouw ik spel-elementen in coaching en training komt regelmatig boven en daar pas ik delen van de theorie uit de workshop bij toe. Het is voor mij vooral een kader en een anker.”
Paul de Vries, StudiumGenerale – Hogeschool Utrecht.

“De workshop heeft mij inzicht gegeven in de markt en achtergronden van gamification. Het model van hoe dat te benaderen was heel inzichtelijk en handzaam.”
Henriëtte van Strijland, marketeer.

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