Gamification in e-learning has become more popular nowadays, especially with an increasing demand for digital learning during the pandemic. Indeed, the benefits are apparent. Gamification creates engaging and interactive ways of learning and practicing a skill, which contribute to learner motivation. This study aims to examine the limits of gamification in e-learning. If we look closer at its mechanisms, gamified learning is still a challenging method for learners. Too many gamification elements in e-learning could lead to addictive behavior and other psychological issues. So, in attempt to understand and discuss the impacts and limits of those mechanisms in e-learning, we interrogated Duolingo users on their learning experience in the application and their thoughts of in-app gamification elements. The results showed that overall, most of the interviewees felt they had a relatively positive learning experience with Duolingo but showed alternating periods of strong engagement and total disengagement. The Duolingo gamification mechanisms that seem to be the most effective are the progress bar system, the quizzes and the streak system.
Jordan Bernardi, Thomas Jarillon, François D’araujo
Paris Diderot University – 07/18/2021
Technical communication follows the perpetual advances in technological trends. It leverages every tool at its disposal to efficiently develop and propose the most relevant technical content to reach its critical target audience. Videos constitute a highly effective medium for capturing and conveying a wide array of information to achieve this goal. The immediacy brought by videos as well as the comprehensive sensory experience they propose are tributes to their demonstrative strength. But if videos constitute such a powerful tool, why are they not used everywhere in technical communication? This research article examines the pertinence of videos in technical communication by exposing their potential limitations according to several criteria: People in charge, univocal set of best practices, narrative aspect, and comparison with written documentation. Reviewing generic existing literature on the subject of videos constituted the first step of this study. A survey and a heuristic evaluation were then conducted to analyze and assess the position of videos in the technical communication landscape while exploring the different limitations to video implementation in this specific framework. The results gathered through the heuristic evaluation and the survey effectively completed the bibliography by providing more recent data on this rapidly evolving medium. These served in identifying some of the current practices and limitations that we can observe in today’s technical communication environment. Although videos are recognized as a real added value to software documentation, they have limitations that all have a common denominator: Lack of time. While one of the biggest challenges of technical writing is to best reflect the products being described, written documentation still seems to be the only one to predominate due to its unmatched ability to be quickly updated.
Documentation and technical communication have gone beyond the stage of secondary support, to become a necessary product while creating a product that reflects its target users is now a common strategy. Then, could inclusive writing be relevant in technical communication to meet users’ expectations? By interviewing technical communication professionals on their products and experience, cross-checked with research, we are seeking to answer this question. From technical guides to marketplace interfaces, we were able to identify how inclusivity could be integrated into their products and learn when it added value. While businesses take every precaution to be seen as inclusive, we could imagine that it would show in the content they create. Inclusive writing is the ultimate lever to women and men’s equality in language. Yet, its cultural and political association added with the variety of its form can make any company think twice before incorporating it. Technical communicators are confronted with a brand-new way of writing content that can sometimes go against the sacred rules of Technical Communication1. At the same time, it implies great change management, not only for users but for collaborators as well. Even though technology might answer most of the drawbacks and complications, is inclusive writing worth the risk?
Structuring content is the cornerstone of great documentation. Structuration ensures not only coherence across content, but also better user experience. How does structuration occur? We conducted a survey searching for internal and external factors influencing structuration. The investigation revealed that internal factors including tools, languages, standards, and guidelines are the basis of well-structured documentation. External factors, such as user- feedback, and a UX team within the company, also prove to be equally important. Structuration also improves with updates from the right people and for the right reasons. In this research article, we discuss content structuration, restructuration, and how it is heavily influenced by various factors independent from content.