Exploring the virtual classroom

Online education and the metaverse

General Resources

Boellstorff, T. (2008). Coming of age in Second Life: An anthropologist explores the virtually human. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Scholarly but accessible guide to Second Life society and culture. A must-read for the beginner.

Dalgarno, B., & Lee, M. J. W. (2010). What are the learning affordances of 3-D virtual environments? British Journal of Educational Technology, 41(1), 10-32. link

Dalgarno, B., Lee, M. J. W., Carlson, L., Gregory, S., & Tynan, B. (2011). An Australian and New Zealand scoping study on the use of 3D immersive virtual worlds in higher education. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology, 27(1), 1-15. link

Dalgarno, B., Lee, M. J. W., Carlson, L., Gregory, S., & Tynan, B. (2011). Institutional support for and barriers to the use of 3D immersive virtual worlds in higher education. In G. Williams, N. Brown, M. Pittard, & B. Cleland (Eds.), Changing demands, changing directions. Proceedings of the 28th ASCILITE Conference (pp. 316-330). Hobart, Australia: University of Tasmania. link

Dalgarno, B., Gregory, S., Carlson, L., Lee, M. J. W., & Tynan, B. (2013). A systematic review and environmental analysis of the use of 3D immersive virtual worlds in Australian and New Zealand higher education institutions (Final project report). Armidale, Australia: DEHub. link

Foster, A. (2008). Professor Avatar. Education Digest, Vol. 73 Issue 5, p12.
Focuses on the use of  Second Life in education; an online community which allows users to personify themselves in an avatar and participate in discussions through the community. It is used as a teaching tool by colleges and universities in the U.S. and other countries. The article discusses a curriculum at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois which uses the virtual community program, and mentions that it has been used as a distance learning tool and as a venue for recreating the ceiling painting of the Sistine Chapel as well as fictional locations from literature. The sexual aspects of the program are also discussed

Gregory, S., Gregory, B., Reiners, T., Fardinpour, A., Hillier, M., Lee, M. J. W., . . . Larson, I. (2013). Virtual worlds in Australian and New Zealand higher education: Remembering the past, understanding the present and imagining the future. In H. Carter, M. Gosper, & J. Hedberg (Eds.), Electric dreams. Proceedings of the 30th ASCILITE Conference (pp. 312-324). Sydney, Australia: Macquarie University. link

Gregory, S., Lee, M. J. W., Ellis, A., Gregory, B., Wood, D., Hillier, M., Campbell, M., Grenfell, J., Pace, S., Farley, H., Thomas, A., Cram, A. Sinnappan, S., Smith, K., Hay, L., Kennedy-Clark, S., Warren, I., Grant, S., Craven, D., Dreher, H., Matthews, C., Murdoch, D., & McKeown, L. (2010). Australian higher education institutions transforming the future of teaching and learning through 3D virtual worlds. In C. H. Steel, M. J. Keppell, P. Gerbic, & S. Housego (Eds.), Curriculum, technology & transformation for an unknown future. Proceedings of the 27th ASCILITE Conference (pp. 399-415). Brisbane, Australia: The University of Queensland. link

Kelton, A.J. (2008). Virtual Worlds? “Outlook Good” EDUCAUSE Review, v43 n5 p15-16, 18, 20, 22 Sep-Oct 2008  link to pdf  Many people believed that virtual worlds would end up like the eight-track audiotape: a memory of something no longer used (or useful). Yet today there are hundreds of higher education institutions represented in three-dimensional (3D) virtual worlds such as Active Worlds and Second Life. The movement toward the virtual realm as a viable teaching and learning environment currently seems unstoppable. The idea of operating within virtual worlds is not without its drawbacks, especially for higher education. The challenges fall into four major categories: (1) perceptual; (2) technical; (3) operational; and (4) pedagogical. Whether it is Second Life or another virtual world, this foundational movement is improving and moving forward. A question to be addressed in the coming months and years is how higher education and, subsequently, individual institutions will determine the best way to continue to move forward with virtual worlds. 
Kelton, A. J. (2007). Second Life: Reaching into the virtual world for real-world learningECAR Research Bulletin2007(17). link  This research bulletin examines the current state of Second Life in relation to the educational environment. Although literature about virtual worlds dates back many years, this bulletin reflects on more recent publications that discuss both technological and pedagogical issues. Content is drawn from interviews with educators and innovators who are already involved in building campuses, teaching classes, and providing resources to those using Second Life.

Kelton, A.J. (2016). What are we missing? IEE Networker. Institute of International Education (2016, 2). Discusses obstacles for the adaptation of VW technology for education. His last and most powerful point is the problem of VW teaching with mobile technology. link

Hew, K., & Cheung, W. (2010). Use of three-dimensional (3-D) immersive virtual worlds in K-12 and higher education settings: A review of the researchBritish Journal Of Educational Technology, 41(1), 33-55.

Lee, M. J. W. (2009). How can 3D virtual worlds be used to support collaborative learning? An analysis of cases from the literature. Journal of e-Learning and Knowledge Society, 5(1), 149-158. link

Lee, M. J. W., & Dalgarno, B. (2011). Scaffolding discovery learning in 3D virtual environments: Challenges and considerations for instructional design. In S. Hai-Jew (Ed.), Virtual immersive and 3D learning spaces: Emerging technologies and trends (pp. 138-169). Hershey, PA: Information Science Reference. link

Lee, M. J. W., Dalgarno, B., Gregory, S., Carlson, L., & Tynan, B. (2013). How are Australian and New Zealand higher educators using 3D immersive virtual worlds in their teaching? In J. Willems, B. Tynan, & R. James (Eds.), Outlooks and opportunities in blended and distance learning (pp. 169–188). Hershey, PA: Information Science Reference.

Morgado, L. (2011). Technology Challenges of Virtual Worlds in Education and Training – Research Directions. In “2013 5th International Conference on Games and Virtual Worlds for Serious Applications (VS-GAMES)”, pp. 1-5. Piscataway, NJ, USA: IEEE. link

Pellas, N. (2014). Open source virtual worlds for e-learning. In M. Khosrow-Pour (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology. Hershey, PA: IGI Global (in press).

Pellas, N. (2014). Conceptual foundations for interactive learning activities with the conjunction of Scratch4OS and Open Sim: Two examples to foster users’ motivation for learning basic algorithmic commands. In M. Khosrow-Pour (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology. Hershey, PA: IGI Global.

Vilela, A.; Cardoso, M.; Martins, D.; Santos, A.; Moreira, L.; Paredes, H.; Martins, P.; Morgado, L. (2010). Privacy challenges and methods for virtual classrooms in Second Life Grid and OpenSimulator. In Proceedings of the 2nd International Conference on Games and Virtual Worlds for Serious Applications – VS-GAMES 2010, Braga, Portugal (pp. 167-174). Piscataway, NJ: IEEE. link

Zagalo, N., Morgado, L., & Boa-Ventura, A. (2011, Eds.). Virtual Worlds and Metaverse Platforms: New Communication and Identity Paradigms. Hershey, PA: Information Science Reference. link

%d bloggers like this: