Crowdsourcing data collection through mobile gamification : leveraging the freemium model
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Classic ways of gathering data on human behavior, such as laboratory based user studies, can be time-consuming, costly and are subject to limited participant pools. Crowdsourcing offers a reduction in operating costs and access to a diverse and large participant pool, however issues arise concerning low worker pay and questions about data quality. Gamification provides a motivation to participate, but also requires the development of specialized, research-question specific games that can be costly to produce. We provide another alternative that combines gamification and crowdsourcing in a smartphone-based system that emulates the popular Freemium model of micro-transactions to motivate voluntary participation through in-game rewards, using a robust framework to study multiple unrelated research questions within the same system. We deployed our prototype framework on the Android market and gathered data over a period of 5 weeks. We compared this data to that gathered from a gamified laboratory version and a non-gamified laboratory version, and found that players who use the in-game rewards were motivated to do experimental tasks. The data showed that there was no difference between the groups for performance on a motor task; however, performance on a cognitive task was worse for the crowdsourced Android group. We discuss the possible reasons for this and provide options for improving data collection and performance on tasks.
DegreeMaster of Science (M.Sc.)
CommitteeStanley, Kevin; Bell, Scott; Neufeld, Eric
Copyright DateJuly 2015