Does gamification affect flow experience? A systematic literature review

Wilk Oliveira, Olena Pastushenko, Luiz Rodrigues, Armando M. Toda, Paula T. Palomino, Juho Hamari, Seiji Isotani

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review

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In recent years, studies in different areas have used gamification to improve users' flow experience. However, due to the high variety of the conducted studies and the lack of secondary studies (e.g., systematic literature reviews) in this field, it is difficult to get the state-of-the-art of this research domain. To address this problem, we conducted a systematic literature review to identify i) which gamification design methods have been used in the studies about gamification and Flow Theory, ii) which gamification elements have been used in these studies, Hi) which methods have been used to evaluate the users' flow experience in gamified settings, and iv) how gamification affects users' flow experience. The main results show that there is growing interest to this field, as the number of publications is increasing. The most significant interest is in the area of gamification in education. However, there is no unanimity regarding the preferred method of the study or the effects of gamification on users' experience. Our results highlight the importance of conducting new experimental studies investigating how gamification affects the users' flow experience in different gamified settings, applications and domains.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 5th International GamiFIN Conference Levi, Finland, April 7-9, 2021
EditorsMila Bujić, Jonna Koivisto, Juho Hamari
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Publication typeA4 Article in conference proceedings
Event5th International GamiFIN Conference, GamiFIN 2021 - Virtual, Levi, Finland
Duration: 7 Apr 20219 Apr 2021

Publication series

NameCEUR Workshop Proceedings
ISSN (Print)1613-0073


Conference5th International GamiFIN Conference, GamiFIN 2021
CityVirtual, Levi


  • Flow theory
  • Gamification
  • Gamified settings
  • Literature review
  • User experience

Publication forum classification

  • Publication forum level 1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science(all)


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