The Challenge

Adults in Britain read books on average for 4.6 hours every week – that’s 39 minutes a day, and we are all influenced by what our friends and colleagues are reading. However, not all adults find reading easy or enjoy it, and there are approximately 12 million people in the UK who find reading a struggle.

The aim of this project was to develop designs and test options for a highly engaging gaming framework that can be used to further support adult literacy skills, both in and out of the classroom.

Reading Agency

Our Approach

One in six UK adults struggles with reading and writing, yet millions play games every day that involve them in reading and could help them develop their literacy skills

Here at PlayGen we’ve been exploring ways in which the motivational power of digital games might be used to engage people who struggle with printed text and might never pick up a traditional book. We understand that tackling such issues requires far more than making a playful experience.

What we did

The Reading Challenge platform is a highly engaging gaming framework for encouraging and supporting adults with low literacy to develop and improve their reading skills.

It is an online and mobile app that turns the “Six Book Reading Challenge” diary into a social experience where players use physical or online books in order to participate. Challenges are personal or communal, encouraging the participation of a community of users by creating a sense of support and allowing the users to feel socially connected with each other.

Leaderboards and achievements also encourage players to read more and help them feel part of the Six Book Reading Challenge community.

The benefits

  • Utilises motivational drivers such as social relaionships, cognitive interest, and personal advancement, which are a key factor in influencing an adult audiences behaviour.
  • Provides platform for teachers and students to continue their lessons and/or book reading discussions outside of the classroom.
  • Allows users to see how friends/classmates are progressing which can inspire them to read more.
  • Encourages students to discuss, recommend, and rate reads, which in turn allows other users who are in the same situation to see what they might like, instigating them to read more.