Drexel LIS Students in SL

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Conference Presentation presented at "The Future is Now: Libraries and Museums in Virtual Worlds," March 2010, http://www.opal-online.org/finschedule.htm,

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Drexel LIS Students in SL

  1. 1. Introducing Second Life as a Multimedia Web Interface:Distance Ed LIS Students in Second Life<br />Vanessa Irvin Morris (SL: MarchenaRajal)<br />Assistant Teaching Professor<br />The iSchool at Drexel University<br />Introducing Second Life as a Multimedia Web Interface by Vanessa Irvin Morris is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 UnportedLicense. Based on a work at www.slideshare.net.<br />
  2. 2. Drexel University in SL<br />Drexel has an island on SL; “Drexel Island”<br />The iSchool has a small space on the island<br />Other departments are building on this island<br />Biochemistry<br />Physics<br />College of Arts and Sciences<br />Looking to expand the iSchool’s space for the purpose of teaching distance ed students<br />
  3. 3. Drexel University in SL<br /><ul><li>Vanessa Irvin Morris – my agency
  4. 4. Full time teaching faculty
  5. 5. Teach 4 sections per term, usually at full capacity
  6. 6. Terms are 10 weeks long
  7. 7. 25 students per class = 100 students
  8. 8. Usually teach 3 distance ed sections, 1 face-to-face
  9. 9. Coordinate/Teach INFO552, Introduction to Web Design for Information Organizations
  10. 10. Students learn html/css, principles of web design
  11. 11. Fall 2009 – Fall 2010:
  12. 12. Towards end of course, topic: intro multimedia (Week 8)
  13. 13. Offered Camtasia VOPP intro to SL as a multimedia platform
  14. 14. Intro as segue into introducing Part II of INFO552 (course still in development)
  15. 15. Winter term 2010 - onward
  16. 16. Offer in-world experience as extra credit</li></li></ul><li>Winter 2010 Class Experience in SL<br /><ul><li>Have 48 students in INFO552 across 2 sections
  17. 17. Offered SL experience incentivized as extra credit opportunity
  18. 18. Gave instructions on entering SL and creating av
  19. 19. Offered two (2) timeslots to meet and give tours
  20. 20. 12 noon SLT (3pm Eastern Time)
  21. 21. 3pm SLT (6pm Eastern Time)</li></li></ul><li>Immediate Result:<br />15 students out of 48 = 30.67% participation<br />
  22. 22. Winter 2010 Class Experience in SL<br /><ul><li>12 noon SLT slot
  23. 23. 10 students showed up
  24. 24. Met MarchenaRajal at the Community Virtual Library (CVL)
  25. 25. Students got to see a digital library in 3D platform
  26. 26. There were many questions
  27. 27. “What kinds of reference questions do you get?”
  28. 28. “What kinds of collections are here?”
  29. 29. “How do you access resources in the library?”
  30. 30. “How do librarians be librarians here?”
  31. 31. Gave student tutorial on SL interface
  32. 32. How to walk, fly, move around
  33. 33. They practiced while touring the CVL
  34. 34. Had them do “The Learning Curve” maze at CVL
  35. 35. Good news(kinda): It was too crowded on the parcel to give a tour
  36. 36. more avs = more “lag”</li></ul>However………….<br />
  37. 37. Something amazing happened:<br />Snow <br />Scarmon<br />Ander <br />Vlodovic<br />Lilia <br />Anthony<br />Chris<br />Zamarung<br />MarchenaRajal<br />Because of high volume of students, 4 librarians “rezzed in” to help out.<br />Librarianship’s strength in networking support is powerful in Second Life.<br />
  38. 38. Winter 2010 Class Experience in SL<br />3pm SLT slot<br />5 students showed up <br />Met Marchena Rajal at the Community Virtual Library<br />Students got to see a digital library in 3D platform<br />They had questions<br />Gave them tutorial on SL interface<br />How to walk, fly, move around<br />They practiced while touring the CVL<br />Had them do “The Learning Curve” maze at CVL<br />
  39. 39. Smaller Group, relaxing time<br />MarchenaRajal<br />
  40. 40. Capturing Student Response (data)<br />Recorded SL chat from tours<br />Post Discussion Board forums on Blackboard<br />
  41. 41. Results of Initiatory SL experience<br /><ul><li>15 students out of 48 = 30.67% participation
  42. 42. Responses:
  43. 43. Student#1:
  44. 44. “I found the experience changed my interaction with others because I could 'experience' a connection that the avatar figure unleashed as I interacted. …</li></ul> I first started online courses and felt the release from ordinary concerns about how my voice, visage, physical attributes, gender, age etc. would enter my mind as I tried to connect with others in a virtual class as opposed to a brick and mortar experience. There is a more lasting memory impression with an avatar connection. I 'saw' another human (avatar) react to my inquiries. I am remembering this 'connection different (sic) than an email or text.”<br />
  45. 45. Results of Initiatory SL experience<br /><ul><li>Responses:
  46. 46. Student#2:
  47. 47. “I was eager to try SL and had registered days ago. … So when I signed on today before 6:00 p.m., I was disappointed to find no one in the class in Info Island. … I was getting pretty frustrated and lonely and decided to play around with the controls. I did a search for Professor Morris’s avatar and sent her an invitation to transport to my location. She, thankfully, responded with an invitation for me to transport to her location, which I did. Whew! …
  48. 48. I arrived and was greeted by Professor (MarchenaRajal) and three classmates. We had a discussion about the possible uses of SL. Some that were mentioned: library design, lectures, book discussion. While exploring, Professor Rajal educated us on setting preferences, buying real estate, etc. All in all, it was a wondrous visit, and I can’t wait to go back to SL! ”</li></li></ul><li>Results of Initiatory SL experience<br /><ul><li>Responses:
  49. 49. Student#3:
  50. 50. “[I]t was great fun and good to virtually hang out with my class.”
  51. 51. Student#4:
  52. 52. “It gives you the feeling of actually speaking face to face.”
  53. 53. Student#5:
  54. 54. “It was very enlightening. … I had no idea that it offered all of those educational tools; I thought it was strictly a social networking outlet. There were tons of useful resources in there. ”</li></li></ul><li>Results of Initiatory SL experience<br /><ul><li>Responses:
  55. 55. Student#6:
  56. 56. “This would be a great, fun resource if I had a better idea of how to use it. … it is an interesting idea and could become very useful in a distance program.” 
  57. 57. Student#7:
  58. 58. “I found Second Life to be a powerful and interesting tool. … I understand why there is a call for an organized "library" presence, and it seems like a really neat way to virtually meet people. ”
  59. 59. Student#8:
  60. 60. “It's about time I met [one of] my professors!”</li></li></ul><li>Results of Initiatory SL experience<br />Students who didn’t make the tours, upon reading their student-colleagues’ discussion forum postings, wanted me to go in again, asking:<br />“Professor Morris, is there a second chance at Second Life?”<br />
  61. 61. Student Challenges<br />“The Usual”: LAG, CRASH, & CURVE<br />LAG – everyone <br />“My computer experienced massive lag, but that seemed to be happening with quite a few people. Not sure what was going on there.”<br />CRASH - many<br />“I gave second life a try on my laptop, but second life crashed. I will try again at the 6 o'clock one.”<br />“I succeeded in logging into sl after many failures!”<br />
  62. 62. Student Challenges<br />CURVE – fewer due to socialized initiation<br />While students initially said they felt a steep learning curve (they were very anxious about being able to move around), upon experiencing “The Learning Curve” maze at the CVL, they said the maze was:<br />“helpful”<br />“good”<br />“This was a lot less frustrating (mostly) than my first solo experience with this.”<br />
  63. 63. Implications and Possibilities<br /><ul><li>Get students in here!
  64. 64. Get them engaged in understanding the multimedia-ness and the deep social </li></ul> embedded-ness of the web<br /><ul><li>Open up space for students to think about how SL empowers web design competencies, via
  65. 65. Machinima
  66. 66. Building 3D objects
  67. 67. Creating apps that can transfer across platforms
  68. 68. Provide opportunities for students to explore,</li></ul> create and build in SL, and be able to transfer outcomes to the web via websites, and <br /> vice versa<br />
  69. 69. Thank you for listening<br />

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