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The Role of Gamification in a Software Development Lifecycle

Gordon, Neil; Brayshaw, Mike; Dixon, John; Grey, Simon; Parker, David


Mike Brayshaw


Teaching Software Engineering students raises a number of challenges; in particular that student developers typically demonstrate behaviours that run counter to good software development. These include failing to plan properly, failing to develop their software in a structured manner, and failing to meet specified deadlines (so called "student syndrome"). Consequentially, students exhibiting these behaviours are more likely to disengage from their studies. Even where submissions are made, they tend to be lower in quality, and may not demonstrate the true capabilities of the individual. Such alienation and disengagement is amplified by the current context of learning in a pandemic, with a wall of digital communication technology coming between teachers and learners. In this paper, the authors will identify how gamification approaches can be applied to software development education, and how they can help to better motivate and educate future software developers through computer managed delivery and assessment. As motivation is a key factor, motivational properties known in computer gaming are applied within the new context of a software engineering lifecycle. The role of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation for developers is considere. The gamified techniques identified are further enhanced with an Agile type approach. This has been particularly critical during 2020/21 where the shift to fully online learning for previously face to face taught students has placed new pressures on students and staff. A


Gordon, N., Brayshaw, M., Dixon, J., Grey, S., & Parker, D. (2021). The Role of Gamification in a Software Development Lifecycle. In INSPIRE XXVI . Delivering Global Education and Impact in Emergencies Using E-Learning (81-94)

Conference Name INSPIRE XXVI International e-conference
Conference Location Online
Start Date Jun 21, 2021
End Date Jun 23, 2021
Acceptance Date May 27, 2021
Publication Date 2021
Deposit Date May 28, 2021
Publicly Available Date Jun 15, 2022
Pages 81-94
Book Title INSPIRE XXVI . Delivering Global Education and Impact in Emergencies Using E-Learning
ISBN 978-1-9996549-5-5
Keywords Gamification, student syndrome, computing education
Public URL
Publisher URL


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