Gamification often takes and claims inspiration from game design. One of my side hobbies is making the occasional game, as well as spending the last seven years reviewing games for my site yars.co.uk. I thought I would just put a few gamification ideas into context based around my personal knowledge of games and game design. I am y no means an expert, but I hope you will find it interesting.
First up, points. I have made games with point systems and I have made games without. Generally I use the points as a way to represent progression and skill – ie, the higher the score, the further your skills have progressed. This is intrinsic on its own, it is a way for the individual player to see how they are doing and if they are improving. This only works if the points reset each time, that way the player can easily see that if they score higher next time – they have improved. Cumulative points don’t allow you to do this, they just show how many points you have collected over time, which is a little less useful. You could consider a personal leaderboard, that just shows the player their scores over time for an exercise- thus easily showing them their improvement.