M. Arruebo, V. Sebastian

University of Zaragoza (SPAIN)
Nanomedinicine is a scientific discipline situated at the interface between physics, chemistry, biochemistry, biotechnology, materials science, medicine, microelectronics and computer science. This emerging field has the potential to revolutionize individual and population-based health in the 21st century.[1] Although nanomedicine is not yet a “fully mature” and widely established discipline, it would be recommended to include it in the educational curriculum of Medical Schools.[2] Learning this discipline requires an academic and multidisciplinary scientific education. In general, the students used to have difficulties to understand the underlying scientific principles that lead to the unique properties that materials show at the nanoscale.[3] This results in a lack of motivation and engagement to continue with the learning process.[4] To avoid the loss of motivation and interest in the Nanomedical field, difficult concepts need to be taught in new, more engaging and interactive ways, where students take an active role in the learning process as engaged learners.
Gamification introduces game mechanics into non-gaming contexts, combining intrinsic with extrinsic motivation in order to boost motivation and engagement among users. Hence, due to the remarkable potential of gamification, this work intends to use this powerful tool to increase the engagement of students by interacting and competing with each other.

The gamification learning material selected is based in Kahoot!, a game-based student response system (GSRS) launched by the teacher in a web-browser on a computer connected to a large screen. The result was to develop a game concept where the classroom temporarily is changed to a game show related with Nanomedicine concepts, where the teacher is the game host and the students are the competitors. The challenge is to answer questions as fast as possible and compete against other classmates. The GSRS was launched for 8 minutes at the end of the class to better assimilate the concepts delivered during today´s lesson or at the beginning of the next class to consolidate the concepts described in the previous class. The students get individual feedback on their questions and the correct answer if wrong answer is given.

The analysis from the results obtained highlights that gaming resolves the lack of interactivity within lessons and students demand the presence of hands-on activities within lessons. In addition, difficult concepts were more approachable and gently introduced, improving the final scores of the students.

The authors wish to express their gratitude to the University of Zaragoza for the project conceded (PIIDUZ_16_235).

[1] Pautler M, Brenner S. Nanomedicine: promises and challenges for the future of public health. Int J Nanomedicine. 2010;5:803–809
[2] Aldrin E Sweeney. Nanomedicine concepts in the general medical curriculum: initiating a discussion Int J Nanomedicine. 2015;10:7319 –7331
[3] Muniz M.N. and Oliver-Hoyo M.T.. On the use of analogy to connect core physical and chemical concepts to those at the nanoscale. Chem Edu Res Practice. 2014; 15:807-823
[4] Sebastian V and Gimenez M. Teaching Nanoscience and thinking nano at the macroscale:
Nanocapsules of wisdom. Procedia - Soc Behavior Sci; 2016; 228:489 – 495