The effects of gamified daily awards on digital vocabulary flashcard learning: A case study




Section: Regular Articles


  • Louis Lafleur Email ORCiD Kwansei Gakuin University, Japan


Gamification in second language acquisition research is a popular topic but there are few empirical comparative studies in the literature. This quasi-experimental mixed-approach study enrolled volunteer Japanese university EFL learners to enable a comparison between two digital vocabulary flashcard learning software conditions carefully designed by the author; (1) the gamified group’s software had daily awards (i.e., consecutive day awards, medals related to daily participation, and a bonus point counter in an effort to encourage spaced spaced learning principles and discourage cramming) and (0) the non-gamified group’s did not. The daily awards had a significant effect in encouraging the gamified group to spread out their study efforts throughout the 12-week study period more effectively than the control group as they completed a lower median number of tasks per active study day (non-gamified: 104.76, gamified: 82.11; p= .021, r(75)= -.264) but studied on more days to complete a similar total number of vocabulary tasks (non-gamified: 2313.00, gamified: 2228.50; p= .601). Moreover, the gamified group significantly outperformed the non-gamified group in terms of vocabulary knowledge score gains between the pretest and posttest; p= .03, r(50)= .300. These results show the numerous and significant positive pedagogical impacts of gamified daily awards.

Keywords: gamification, interleaved spaced repetition, vocabulary learning, case study

Suggested Citation:

Lafleur, L. (2024). The effects of gamified daily awards on digital vocabulary flashcard learning: A case study. Technology in Language Teaching & Learning, 6(2), 1–20.


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