Joey R Fanfarelli Author of Evaluating Organization Development

Joey R Fanfarelli

Assistant Professor
University of Central Florida

Joey Fanfarelli is Assistant Professor of games and Interactive Media in the Nicholson School of Communication and Media at the University of Central Florida. His work centers on games and gamification, with an emphasis on motivating users and improving the learning process in both educational and entertainment applications.

Subjects: Education, Gaming


Joey R. Fanfarelli is an assistant professor of Games and Interactive Media at the University of Central Florida. His research involves analyzing the design of games and gamification for educational and entertainment purposes. More specifically, his work has centered on improving motivation and learning through digital badging and video games.

Areas of Research / Professional Expertise

    Digital Badging, Educational Games, Motivation, Learning



Featured Title
 Featured Title - Designing Effective Digital Badges *Fanfarelli* - 1st Edition book cover


Entertainment computing

Adapting UX to the design of healthcare games and applications

Published: Dec 31, 2018 by Entertainment computing
Authors: Fanfarelli, J.R., McDaniel, R., & Crossley, C.

Games and simulations are used in healthcare for many purposes. However, there is often disconnect between content creators and the healthcare providers or patients who use their products. This can result in negative experiences and perceptions. This article investigates research in user experience (UX) to examine how games and applications designed for use in healthcare are impacted by considerations such as design practices and users’ attitudes.

Journal of Virtual Worlds Research

Designing digital badges to improve learning in virtual worlds

Published: Dec 31, 2018 by Journal of Virtual Worlds Research
Authors: Fanfarelli, J.R.

The present article examines how careful badge design can be used to facilitate pedagogy and learning in virtual worlds. It integrates educational and psychological theory to discuss several key uses and best practices of designing digital badges for virtual worlds, including assessing peer skill in multiuser worlds, fostering curiosity to drive exploration of the world, setting appropriate goals to structure learning about the world, and teaching users about the world through feedback.

Online Learning Journal

Exploring digital badges in university courses: Relationships between quantity, engagement, and performance

Published: Dec 31, 2017 by Online Learning Journal
Authors: Fanfarelli, J.R. & McDaniel, R.

The exploratory correlational study presented within this article addresses this gap by examining these relationships, relating number of badges earned in a pilot course to performance and engagement-related metrics. The results are further categorized by demographic groups to identify starting points for future research. Several relationships were identified, providing initial evidence of the importance of studying number of badges earned and how that number impacts effectiveness.

Simulation & Gaming

Building better digital badges: Pairing completion logic with psychological factors

Published: Dec 31, 2016 by Simulation & Gaming
Authors: McDaniel R. & Fanfarelli, J.R.

This article examines an existing model of completion logic for digital badges. This model is expanded upon by pairing these formal mechanics with relevant psychological theory, summarizing key principles that pertain to how people interact with badges. It then considers three dimensions of badges-in-use—social, cognitive, and affective. A design matrix and a series of design recommendations for badging are derived from the presented perspectives.

Journal of Educational Technology Systems

Individual differences in digital badging: Do learner characteristics matter?

Published: Dec 31, 2015 by Journal of Educational Technology Systems
Authors: Fanfarelli, J.R. & McDaniel, R.

This study exams a badging system through the lens of Long–Dziuban reactive behavior types and traits. Results revealed differences in badge effectiveness that were dependent upon students’ Long–Dziuban categorization. Student engagement, intrinsic motivation, reflective and integrative learning, and higher order learning were the constructs most dependent upon categorization.