Gamification in Education Ontology

In this case study, while I mainly assumed the role of lead researcher and designer in our academic research team, we went into the realm of gamification in education, aiming to enhance student motivation and learning performance. Traditional approaches utilize classifications of behavioral profiles, such as “gamer” or “user types,” to personalize students’ experiences. However, a more comprehensive examination of these profiles is required to develop instructional designs that resonate with learners’ intrinsic drivers and motivations. In response to this need, we developed a novel application ontology that captures the relationships between Jung’s archetypes (e.g., the Hero, the Outlaw) adapted for educational purposes, along with a taxonomy of game elements specific to education, and Bloom’s revised taxonomy to classify learning activity types. This ontology paves the way for personalized instructional designs directly relating to students’ learning activities.

In the ontology design phase, we followed the Simple Knowledge-Engineering Methodology to connect the Gamification Journey user-type approach for educational systems based on Jung’s 12 Archetypes (Palomino et al., 2019), the Taxonomy of Game Elements in Educational Environments (TGEEE) (Toda et al., 2019), and Bloom’s Taxonomy for Learning Objectives (Krathwohl, 2002). By addressing key competency questions, we established semantic relationships between archetype characteristics, game element dimensions, learning objectives, and learning activity types, which can be used to personalize educational contexts and activities.

In the ontology evaluation phase, we employed the FOCA methodology (Bandeira, 2015) to assess the quality and reusability of the ontology. This method enabled us to validate the ontology against specific quality criteria, ensuring its accessibility to domain experts who may not have extensive knowledge of ontologies. By carefully designing and evaluating the proposed ontology, we demonstrate its potential to create more effective gamification designs for supporting learning, both in unplugged gamification strategies and personalized gamified educational systems.


Academic Researcher | Graphic and Instructional Designer


Research, sketching, drawing, conceptual design


Research and Design


From July 2019 to June 2020

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