Health Care Collaboration & Community in Virtual Worlds & Second Life


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Second only to the general concept of Web 2.0, virtual worlds are the source of more articles in PubMed than any other emerging social technology. Of the many virtual worlds, Second Life (a free, open source 3d virtual world platform) is the one with the strongest presence in health care communities, from patient groups and medical education to research and professional meetings. Second Life can enable health systems to create either public or secure private spaces for functions from patient education, outreach, staff training, remote meetings, or more. As with any social technology, understanding the context and norms of the online space are essential to making institutional engagement a success. In this session, we will look at case studies illustrating how some organizations have used Second Life for communication, collaboration and community engagement.

Published in: Health & Medicine, Technology

Health Care Collaboration & Community in Virtual Worlds & Second Life

  1. 1. Health Care Collaboration & Community in Virtual Worlds & Second Life Patricia F. Anderson, (a.k.a. Perplexity Peccable) © 2009 Regents of the University of Michigan. This work is subject to a Creative Commons license.
  2. 2. First, Why Virtual Worlds? <ul><li>ROI </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Economics </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Skills building / modeling </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Transferability </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Access / Audience </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Global / International </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Asynchronous </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Synchronous </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Research Focus (Pubmed) </li></ul>
  3. 3. Why Virtual Worlds <ul><li>IBM GIO Report: </li></ul>
  4. 4. Social Media in PubMed <ul><li>n = 426 </li></ul><ul><li>Largest concepts: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Web 2.0 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Virtual worlds </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Wikis/Wikipedia </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Facebook/Myspace </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Youtube </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Trends and New Audiences <ul><li> </li></ul>
  6. 6. Trends & Young Audiences
  7. 7. Trends & Older Audiences <ul><li>“ Overall age demographics continue much as expected. 73% of the population for September were 25 years and older. The older you are, the more time you spend in Second Life: over-45's spent an average of 64.13 hours in September, 35-44 spent 57.06 hours, 25-34 spent 45.06 hours, and the 18-24's spent less than 30 hours. </li></ul><ul><li>Females spent nearly twice as long online in Second Life in September as the boys. </li></ul><ul><li>Face it, your Aunt Tilley is more likely to be spending more of her time in Second Life than that early-adopting, tech-savvy young fellow.” </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. New developments <ul><li>Xbox: Project NATAL – controller free gaming: </li></ul>
  9. 9. New developments <ul><li>Emortal, the next generation playground: OR </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li> </li></ul>Trends – Mobile
  11. 11. Important Virtual Worlds Trends <ul><li>MediaGrid </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Second Life </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>World of Warcraft </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Wonderland </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Croquet </li></ul></ul><ul><li>OpenSim </li></ul><ul><li>Interoperability </li></ul><ul><li>Portability </li></ul><ul><li>Content Sharing </li></ul><ul><li>Security </li></ul><ul><li>Control </li></ul>
  12. 12. So You’ve Heard About Second Life <ul><li>Screenshot of SecondLife website </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  13. 13. Second Life is Growing … <ul><li>From ~2002 to ~2007 … </li></ul>
  14. 14. Second Life is Growing … <ul><li>From ~2007 to ~2008 … </li></ul>From ~2007 to ~2008 …
  15. 15. Who’s There? <ul><li>Social Research Foundation: </li></ul>
  16. 16. Who’s There? Corporate <ul><li>Adidas </li></ul><ul><li>Apple Inc. </li></ul><ul><li>Best Buy </li></ul><ul><li>BMW </li></ul><ul><li>Cisco Systems </li></ul><ul><li>Coca Cola </li></ul><ul><li>Comcast </li></ul><ul><li>Dell </li></ul><ul><li>H&R Block </li></ul><ul><li>IBM </li></ul><ul><li>NBA (basketball, really) </li></ul><ul><li>NBC </li></ul><ul><li>Nissan </li></ul><ul><li>Pontiac </li></ul><ul><li>Reuters </li></ul><ul><li>Sun Microsystems </li></ul><ul><li>Toyota </li></ul><ul><li>The Weather Channel </li></ul><ul><li>Warner Brothers </li></ul><ul><li>… and many more … </li></ul>
  17. 17. Who’s There? Schools <ul><li>Bowling Green State University </li></ul><ul><li>Columbia University </li></ul><ul><li>Duke University </li></ul><ul><li>Drexel University </li></ul><ul><li>Harvard University </li></ul><ul><li>New York University </li></ul><ul><li>Ohio State University </li></ul><ul><li>Pennsylvania State University </li></ul><ul><li>Princeton </li></ul><ul><li>Stanford University </li></ul><ul><li>SUNY </li></ul><ul><li>Temple University </li></ul><ul><li>UCLA & UC - Berkeley </li></ul><ul><li>University of Cincinnatti </li></ul><ul><li>University of Colorado at Denver Medical Center </li></ul><ul><li>University of Kansas Medical Center </li></ul><ul><li>University of Texas Medical Branch </li></ul><ul><li>University of Tennessee College of Medicine </li></ul><ul><li>University of Michigan </li></ul><ul><li>Vassar College </li></ul><ul><li>Virginia Tech </li></ul>… and over 100 more. Source: SimTeach:
  18. 18. More Practically … <ul><li>Professional Engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Economics </li></ul><ul><li>Discovery </li></ul><ul><li>Education </li></ul><ul><li>Productivity </li></ul><ul><li>Collaboration </li></ul><ul><li>International / Global </li></ul><ul><li>Qualitative Reasons </li></ul>
  19. 19. Second Life Now or Later? <ul><li>“ Imagine it’s 1949 and you’re a big brand. Do you NOT participate in TV? Or, it’s 1925. Do you NOT participate in radio?” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Tuple vs. Kipple. Value of Measuring Engagement. June 7, 2007. </li></ul></ul>
  20. 20. What’s There? Nanotechnology Island
  21. 21. What’s There? Interacting with Cells
  22. 22. What’s There? Clinical Training
  23. 23. What’s There? Disaster Response Simulations
  24. 24. What’s There? Health & Medical Libraries
  25. 25. What’s There? Fundraising for the Social Good <ul><li>World Aids Day </li></ul><ul><li>Relay for Life </li></ul><ul><li>PeaceFest </li></ul><ul><li>Autism Society of America </li></ul>
  26. 26. What’s There? Advocacy & Activism <ul><li>Assistive technologies for gaming </li></ul><ul><li>National healthcare reform community meetings </li></ul><ul><li>Autistic Liberation front </li></ul>
  27. 27. What’s There? Support Groups & Communities <ul><li>ASA Saturday night meetings </li></ul><ul><li>GimpGirl </li></ul>
  28. 28. SLHealthy
  29. 29. SLHealthy <ul><li>Groups (261) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Autism/Aspergers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Depression/Bipolar </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Alcoholism & substance abuse </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Brain injury / rehabilitation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Disabilities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cancers </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Sims/Locations (76) </li></ul><ul><li>Event Calendar </li></ul><ul><li>URL: </li></ul>
  30. 30. What’s There? Real Life Organizations <ul><li>American Chemical Society </li></ul><ul><li>AAUW </li></ul><ul><li>MacArthur Foundation </li></ul>
  31. 31. What’s There? Real Life Organizations <ul><li>IEEE </li></ul><ul><li>Nature Publishing Group / Elsevier </li></ul><ul><li>National Library of Medicine / ToxTown </li></ul><ul><li>Centers for Disease Control </li></ul>
  32. 32. What’s There? Real Life Organizations <ul><li>International Society for Technology in Education </li></ul><ul><ul><li>4783 members </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>3775 Traffic </li></ul></ul><ul><li>American Cancer Society </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Last year, the 2007 RFLofSL raised more than $118,000 and attracted more than 1,700 avatar participants to the walkathon event!” </li></ul></ul>
  33. 33. Examples: Imperial College (London)
  34. 34. Examples: West Palomar Hospital
  35. 35. Examples: NHS Polyclinic
  36. 36. Examples: Ann Myers Medical Center
  37. 37. Ideas <ul><li>Communication skills </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Patient history taking </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Problem solving </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cultural competencies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ethics & role-playing </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Productivity </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Meetings </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Distance learning </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>International teaching </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Clinical space design & modeling </li></ul><ul><li>Awareness </li></ul>
  38. 38. What You Need To Know Beforehand <ul><li>Tech </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Bandwidth </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hardware </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Screen resolution / Video cards </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Frequent Downloads / Software Updates </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Firewalls </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Social & Planning </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Check the calendar for planned outages </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Small Groups </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>SLURLS </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Money in SL </li></ul></ul>
  39. 39. If We Build It They Will Come <ul><li>Not!!!!! </li></ul>
  40. 40. What do ISTE & ACS do different? <ul><li>Meetings </li></ul><ul><li>Special events </li></ul><ul><li>Speaker series </li></ul><ul><li>Resources </li></ul><ul><li>Contacts </li></ul><ul><li>Support </li></ul>
  41. 41. Best Practices <ul><li>Remember, this is a SOCIAL technology. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Get to know your neighbors </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Collaborate & communicate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Join groups </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Go to meetings & events </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Take classes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Make friends </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Share, give back to the community </li></ul></ul>
  42. 42. Best Practices <ul><li>Take your time to build community first, spaces second. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>This means both in Second Life and within your institution. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Think about how this fits in with the overall social media plan. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use technologies to integrate SL with other social media </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Develop a maintenance and troubleshooting plan </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Get to know a variety of Second Life groups and communities before you make design or community decisions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Consider the culture and norms of the environment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Don’t necessarily impose real life on Second Life </li></ul></ul>
  43. 43. Best Practices <ul><li>Design for a diverse audience of varying abilities </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use the “Marco Polo” tools for accessibility </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Work with people from Virtual Abilities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Do usability and accessibility testing </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Rule of thumb: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use BOTH accessibility guidelines for real world architecture & web design </li></ul></ul>
  44. 44. Questions to Ask <ul><li>What names do you want (can’t be changed later)? </li></ul><ul><li>Do you want to build a model of real life or a new conceptual space? Why? </li></ul><ul><li>Do you have a content plan? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>WHY it is going there </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>WHERE it is coming from </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>WHEN and how often new items should appear </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>WHO is the target audience </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>WHO is responsible for content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>HOW is the content getting there </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Do you need to update your social media plan? </li></ul>
  45. 45. Training and Orientations <ul><li>Virtual Abilities : Orientation: </li></ul>
  46. 46. Starter Resources for SL Health & Healthcare <ul><li>SLHealthy: <> </li></ul><ul><li>Healthcare Support and Education <> </li></ul><ul><li>Groups in Second Life: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Healthcare Education </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>SL Medical Association </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Health Support Coalition </li></ul></ul>
  47. 47. Starter Resources for SL Science & Research <ul><li>McConaghy, T. Troy. Overview of Science-Related Stuff in Second Life. Nature Network: </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Second Life Research: </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Science & Technology in Second Life: </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Second Life Researcher Resources: </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul>
  48. 48. Videos <ul><li>Second Life Cable Network: </li></ul><ul><li>Vavoom, JS. Virtual Nursing Education in Second Life, part 1 of 5. </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Pennell, DrDoug. Testis Tour on OSU Medicine. </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Heron, Gentle. A Second Life on Second Life. </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Virtual Ability </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Depres, Draxtor. Obama healthcare team close to the ground in Second Life </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Qunhua, Kaiya. Second Life Public Health. </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Peccable, Perplexity. Second Life Virtual Health. </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Peccable, Perplexity. Science Learning Opportunities in Second Life. </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul>
  49. 49. <ul><li>These slides will be available at: </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul>