Focus: learning experiences in 3D VWs/instructors using VWs to teach adult learners How do they use and implement this technology to design effective learning experiences? The focus is on the learning experience, not the tool. The tool facilitates the design of the learning experience. I want to learn how, and why, they turn to VWs to deliver instruction, what the challenges are, and what are the characteristics of successful VW implementations *not focused on VW platforms. Focused on their use to deliver learning experiences and teach adults Humanities: Duke, literature and history, foreign language training, ethics Social Sciences: psychology, sociology, Sciences: natural sciences like physics and space sciences (astronomy) Professions and applied sciences: education, business, hrd, Heathcare: nursing, pharmacy, medicine (dentistry, cardiology) PURPOSE: The purpose of this case study is to explore the educational application of 3D virtual worlds in a variety of academic discipline areas and to critically assess the strengths and limitations this virtual learning environment presents for teaching adult learners. Question guiding my inquiry is: What are faculty members ’ perceptions of the strengths and limitations of three-dimensional virtual worlds as learning spaces for teaching adult learners? RQ1: How do instructors implement educational experiences in 3D virtual worlds, for adult learners? RQ2: How do instructors facilitate adult learning in 3D virtual worlds, across disciplines? RQ3: What insights do instructors describe about the adult learners ’ needs in this virtual environment? RQ4: How do instructors describe and/or evaluate a successful immersive learning experience, implemented in a 3D virtual world? RQI: what instructional strategies are instructors using with adult learners, in virtual worlds? (role play, PPT presentation, discussion groups, problem-solving, case studies, reflection, [experiential learning: field trips, simulations, role-playing ie. Stepping into history VW] RQII: how do they facilitate learning, using these instructional strategies? How do they make learning happen, considering they are working with adult learners? How do instructors facilitate that learning?
Active Worlds (with over 2 million users) has its own “ Educational Universe ” (AWEDU), which includes over 80 educational worlds (Kelton, 2008) *Second Life is most popular virtual world in education (Villano, 2008) Campus Second Life is available for educators (Childress & Braswell, 2006; Kelton, 2007). Second Life , which began in June 2003, experienced phenomenal growth in 2006, and currently has more than 300 colleges and universities engaged in virtual-based education (Bell, Peters & Pope, 2007; Meall, 2007) As of 2008 the number of virtual citizens in Second Life reached 14 million, although not all of these citizens are using the platform for educational purposes (Kelton). The average “ citizen ” in Second Life is 35 years old, and 40% of its “ citizens ” are female (Watson, Grant, Bello & Hoch, 2008). Other virtual worlds include There.com , Central Grid , Kaneva , Twinity , CyberNet Worlds , The Palace , Furcadia , and Project DarkStar (Kelton). The Arts Metaverse (http://artsmetaverse.arts.ubc.ca/) developed by the University of British Columbia ’ s Arts Instructional Support and Information Technology unit and based on the open-source Croquet platform is an immersive 3D virtual learning environment that provides a collaborative learning space for scholars, teachers, and students.
This allows me to give background and leads to problem statement Focus: learning experiences in 3D VWs/instructors using VWs to teach adult learners How do they use and implement this technology to design effective learning experiences? The focus is on the learning experience, not the tool. The tool facilitates the design of the learning experience. I want to learn how, and why, they turn to VWs to deliver instruction, what the challenges are, and what are the characteristics of successful VW implementations *not focused on VW platforms. Focused on their use to deliver learning experiences and teach adults
University list in appendix of proposal, since then have located others (Dr. Rouskas, Dr. Sizemore)
--Many virtual worlds were not created strictly for educational purposes, but are being used for education, and this presents a problem for instructors applying the technology in their teaching (Boulos et al., 2007, Hayes, 2006). Instructors face a host of unforeseen issues and barriers SL is a good example of a VW that has other intended purposes, business, commerce, entertainment --The strengths and limitations these environments present for supporting adult learners, and how they learn best, have not been widely documented in the research (Hayes, 2006, Taylor and Chang, 2008) -- The skills and competencies instructors need to teach adult learners in these virtual spaces have not been fully examined and documented (Boulos et al., 2007). **Depth of research is in game-based learning, not virtual worlds for adult learners. Not all VWs are games, and focus here is not games, just recognition that VWs have their origins in gaming Increasing use in education and training Virtual meetings and collaboration HRD training Health and science labs Book clubs and collaborative meetings Social learning space (community building)
AHRD Innovative Session 1
Application of 3DVirtual Worlds toEducation 1
Faculty Perceptions of Three-Dimensional (3D) VirtualWorlds: Instructional Use,Implementation and Benefitsfor Adult Learners … explore the educational application of 3D virtual worlds in a variety of academic discipline areas and critically assess the strengths and limitations this virtual learning environment presents for teaching adult learners. 2
The design and implementation of learning experiences across a variety of disciplines: Education/HRD, Business, Health Sciences, Humanities, Natural SciencesHealthcareTraining 3
Virtual Worlds in HRD/Education Active Worlds Forterra There are over 300 Google Lively virtual worlds! Multiverse Open Croquet Project Wonderland Protosphere Qwak Second Life There 4
Stepping into History Meeting/Discussion GroupPresentation Astronomy Presentation
Virtual World Applications Art critique Book clubs Business innovation Classical literature immersion Counseling Healthcare (Nursing, pharmacy) Historical immersion Journalism Language immersion Law Team meetings/collaboration 7
Something to keep in mind….. Many VWs not created specifically for educational purposes but are adopted for educational use Potential benefits, but also barriers and challenges for organizations, instructors and learners New skills and competencies required We are just beginning to realize the potential virtual worlds hold for creating immersive learning experiences, for adult learners 8