Dr. Peter Leong, Education Professor, designed this course to provide students with the opportunity to explore the use of virtual worlds, primarily Second Life, for teaching and learning. Students identify and analyze emerging research, as well as tools, pedagogy, SL teaching environments, content resources, and available assessments for virtual world teaching. The course provides “hands-on” experiential learning with the objective of enabling graduate students to design, facilitate, and evaluate instruction in Second Life. As well as leveraging Second Life as a distance learning tool, the students and Dr. Leong research the various ways that Second Life can be leveraged for instructional purposes, such as exploring other educational SL builds ((virtual field trips) and assessing the design of those sims for educational purposes. The course also covers basic fundamentals of building in SL with a focus on building simple educational objects/tools (how to deliver content), e.g. materials dispenser (prim givers), media screen, slideshow, URL loader, book, etc. as well as on how to promote interactivity in SL. The ultimate goal is for the students to design, facilitate & evaluate instruction in SL that leverages SL. There are also asynchronous components of this completely online. UHs online learning tool Laulima (Sakai) provides a document repository, while weekly readings and online discussions are placed on a Ning social networking site where students can also post photos/videos, etc. Furthermore students are required to blog their SL learning experience using blogging tools of their choice. The final project is the creation of a class module by student teams, however there is a strong research component with students being required to research and compile a list of SL educational resources (both in-world & online) as well as develop an annotated bibliography of research on virtual world teaching.
Dr. Peter Leong
“ Ikaika Miles” in SL
Assistant Professor Educational Technology
University of Hawaii - Manoa
Introduction to: Teaching in Second Life
Why? You’re excited Your students could use some excitement
Why? Second Life is SPECIAL . Not just another web-based tool
What is Second Life? Multi-User Virtual Environment (MUVE) created by Linden Lab June 23, 2003
Critical Preparation #3 STUDENT Controlled Exploration Be specific Set goals
BEFORE YOUR CLASS STARTS in SL 12 Critical Orientations Summary
Equipment & connection
Create a notecard
Found a home
Explored many sims
Best Practices I need help! Where can I get that? Don’t assume anything
Best Practices Content not technology wonder why those avatars are all hunched over?
Best Practices Syllabus is complete wish I’d known I’d have to wear a stupid costume For this course, all students must demonstrate that they have the following required equipment: PC Computer Windows XP or Vista 1.5 ghz processor 1 GB RAM Graphics Cards: (at least one of these) --NVIDIA Graphics Card 6600+ -- ATI Graphics Card 1600-1900; 2600/2900; 3650/3850 High Speed DIRECT Internet Connection (wi-fi is unstable) *Approximately TWO WEEKS of class will be spent in required explorations before class begins. All students will be required to demonstrate that they have the basic skills needed to participate fully in a virtual class session.
Best Practices Try a unit of instruction - before a full semester Integrate Second Life slowly
Best Practices Safety Instructions Set Boundaries & Limitations Hey..how do we get outa this thing? I dunno
Best Practices Socialization – get students to join groups, attend social events Hey..how do we get outa this thing? Love to dance
Best Practices Watch out for Wi-Fi connections If possible, do a F2F orientation in lab