My academic research is situated in the field of Human-Computer Interaction and focuses on user experience, gamification, and gameful design.
Please check my complete list of Publications as well.
Personalized Gameful Design
I am developing and validating methods to design personalized gameful systems and experiences. Being personalized means that each user will have a different experience according to their preferences, which can lead to better engagement and performance. Examples of topics included in this research are how can designers select gameful design elements that are appealing to different users and how can the elements of a system be dynamically adapted to each user.
- Validation of User Preferences and Effects of Personalized Gamification on Task Performance. In: Frontiers in Computer Science, vol. 2, pp. 29, 2020.
- Dynamic Personalization of Gameful Interactive Systems. University of Waterloo, 2019.
- Elements of Gameful Design Emerging from User Preferences. In: Proceedings of the 2017 Annual Symposium on Computer-Human Interaction in Play, ACM, Amsterdam, Netherlands, 2017.
- Recommender Systems for Personalized Gamification. In: Proceedings of UMAP’17 Adjunct, ACM, Bratislava, Slovakia, 2017, ISBN: 9781450350679.
Gamification Within UX Research and Design
I am currently working on creating processes to integrate gamification research, design, and evaluation within the usual user experience (UX) design and research practices. Much of the gamification literature currently teaches how to design gamification solutions by themselves. But the reality is that the gameful elements and experiences must be part of the overall user experience. Therefore, the gameful design processes must be integrated with all the UX design processes.
Gameful Design Heuristics
The Gameful Design Heuristics is a tool for rapid (heuristic) evaluation of the motivational potential of an application or experience. It can help the project team quickly identify design gaps related with motivation and engagement in their product.
- Gameful Design Heuristics: A Gamification Inspection Tool. In: Human-Computer Interaction. Perspectives on Design. Proceedings of HCI International 2019. LNCS 11566, Springer, 2019.
- Heuristic Evaluation for Gameful Design. In: The ACM SIGCHI Annual Symposium on Computer-Human Interaction in Play (CHI PLAY 2016), ACM, Austin, TX, USA, 2016.
The Gamification User Types Hexad Scale
This research resulted in a validated 24-item scale (questionnaire) that can be used to accurately score individual preferences among the six Hexad user types. Additionally, we have collected some data regarding average user type scores in the population, as well as the relationship of the user types scores with other indicators such as the Big-5 personality traits.
- Empirical Validation of the Gamification User Types Hexad Scale in English and Spanish. In: International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, vol. 127, pp. 95-111, 2019.
- The Gamification User Types Hexad Scale. In: The ACM SIGCHI Annual Symposium on Computer-Human Interaction in Play (CHI PLAY 2016), ACM, Austin, TX, USA, 2016.
The Five Player Traits
This research seeks to understand different player preferences and styles in games. It resulted in the creation of a traits model that classifies playing styles in five categories, as well as taxonomies of game elements and playing styles according to player preferences.
- Player Characteristics and Video Game Preferences. In: Proceedings of the 2019 Annual Symposium on Computer-Human Interaction in Play – CHI PLAY ’19, ACM, Barcelona, Spain, 2019.
- “I don’t fit into a single type”: A Trait Model and Scale of Game Playing Preferences. In: Proceedings of INTERACT 2019, LNCS 11747, Springer, 2019.
- Towards a Trait Model of Video Game Preferences. In: International Journal of Human–Computer Interaction, vol. 34, no. 8, pp. 732-748, 2018.
- A Framework and Taxonomy of Videogame Playing Preferences. In: Proceedings of the 2017 Annual Symposium on Computer-Human Interaction in Play, ACM, Amsterdam, Netherlands, 2017.