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Designing a good balanced challenge is not easy. This type of design is called Game Design Thinking. This type of design takes in to consideration the mindset of the player/user. Users/players do not mind a challenge or puzzle. Studies show a well designed challenge can increase engagement and retention.

Gamification is a whole system. You don't want to just add on game-like features, you want design a whole system of input, output and feedback. A gamified framework works best if it is thought of as a system.

Public feedback such as a leaderboard provides motivation. A leaderboard is a public record of a student's achievements. Part of the efficacy of a leaderboard is that it is a public facing element. Done correctly, it can spur competition and motivation to be better.