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What is Second Life? A Learning at Work Day Presentation
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What is Second Life? A Learning at Work Day Presentation

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A presentation for the Open University's recent Learning at Work Day, held by Human Resources Development. This particular presentation provides an overview of what Second Life is and a brief summary ...

A presentation for the Open University's recent Learning at Work Day, held by Human Resources Development. This particular presentation provides an overview of what Second Life is and a brief summary of how it is used at the OU.

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  • 1) General welcome, facilitators and participants introduce themselves
  • 1) “synchronous” = shared activities necessitate synchronous or real-time communication 2) “persistent” = indicates that a “virtual world cannot be paused” or does not shutdown when the user exits 3) “avatar” = “any digital representation (graphical or textual), beyond a simple label or name, that has agency (an ability to perform actions) and is controlled by a human agent in real time” (Bell, 2008, p. 1).

What is Second Life? A Learning at Work Day Presentation What is Second Life? A Learning at Work Day Presentation Presentation Transcript

  • Virtual Worlds and The Open University
    • Learning at Work Day
    • Thursday 20 th May
    • Chris Carter, Steph Broadribb and Anna Peachey
  • Which of these are you…?
    • According to Spence (2008), the HE community can be divided into four camps:
    • 1) Those who embrace virtual worlds
    • 2) Those who have ignored the evolving use of this technology
    • 3) Those who are aware of but have not yet explored the technology
    • 4) Those who are entirely unaware that virtual worlds exist!
  • What is a virtual world?
    • No single definition, but a broad one is:
    • “ A synchronous , persistent network of people, represented as avatars , facilitated by networked computers” (Bell, 2008).
    • As cited in Spence (2008)
    • Alternatively… :
    • “ Massive multi-user online environments where millions of people live out a collective fantasy existence”
    • Source: Castranova (2007)
  • The virtual world landscape… Around 300 at the moment – 800 projected by 2012. Source: http://www.kzero.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/universe-q2-09a.jpg
  • What is Second Life?
    • Virtual world developed by Linden Lab
    • Launched June 2003
    • Persistent – available online 24/7
    • Not a game! No predefined ‘objectives’
    • User-generated content
    • Large and highly diverse population (as of 19/5/10, approx. 17 million registered users, 1 million active resident log ins every month; approx 40-60k online at any one time)
    Sources: http:// www.crunchbase.com/company/secondlife And http://secondlife.com/statistics/economy-data.php?d =2010-05-19
  • Who uses Second Life?
    • Average SL user – 30s to 40s (average age 33 years – www.kzero.co.uk )
    • Real life (RL) business – global networking, marketing, recruitment, publishing and more
    • Virtual World (SL) business – totally virtual business, $L
    • - Almost 42 million L$ spent in throughout April 2010 (Approx $150,000 – exchange is roughly L$280 to $1)
    • Education – schools and universities worldwide
  • http://www.kzero.co.uk/ And so on….
  • How do The Open University use SL?
    • In-world tutorials
    • In-world presentations
    • In-world exhibitions
    • Student networking
    • Staff Development
    • Research
    • e-Conferences
    • Marketing
  • What does SL look like? [video clip]
  • So, why use Second Life?
    • engagement
    creativity community support learning enjoyment Skills practice innovation
  • Potential challenges
    • Attitudes: “it’s just a game …” vs. learning through play
    • Fear of technology
    • Hardware, firewalls and Internet connections
    • Knowing your way around (as the facilitator)
    • Cost of buying land:
    • E.g. Fit Island
    • $700 / £425 set-up fee (1/2 price for Ed.)
    • $1770 / £1075 maintenance fee (annual)
    • Total: $2470 / £1500
    • Creating your SL island
    • Approx £500 per day (we needed 4 days)
  • Any Questions?
  • Thank you
    • Steph Broadribb
    • [email_address]
    • (aka Lorelli Loire)
    Chris Carter [email_address] (aka Lavender Skytower) Anna Peachey [email_address] (aka Elsa Dickens)