12 (3.2), 2011
Nil GOKSEL CANBEK, Tamar LOMINADZE, Mariam MANJGALADZE & Ugur DEMIRAY
INSTRUCTIONAL SYSTEMS DESIGN (ISD): Theory and Practice in Second Life
The considerable changes in distance learning related technologies and Web 2.0 tools direct new immersive platforms to serve on the concept of avatar-driven interactions. In this sense, the immersive learning platforms, like Second Life (SL), embrace innovative forms of network based settings for effective community interactions. SL, as an interactive learning milieu, conducts 3D interactions and active education within the context of Instructional Systems Design (ISD) which makes learning experiences efficient for both the tutor and learners on the platform designed on social networking. The platform gives an appropriate service to its users to be part of an instructional application of virtual worlds in where learners become connected though online activities. Within the learning theories existing nowadays, instructional designers, who are working in 3D environment like SL, are using mainly cognitive theory and constructivist strategy of learning. According to cognitive learning theory, people learn in different ways that are individually contextual and new trends in Instructional Design (ID) had to address these differences. There are number of already approbated instructional models, which are used widely in the process of creation learning courses for 3D environments. The most frequently used model is ADDIE (Assess–Design– Develop–Implement– Evaluate), and the model PIE (Plan-Integrate–Evaluate), that is relatively new and become increasingly popular as it allows easy integration of technology in the classroom-oriented (virtual or real) teaching. Based on the above mentioned concerns, this paper will examine the instructional design models used to create immersive courses within SL. Further, the paper will collect ideas on the instructional tools and technologies used for designing SL courses as these new technologies used in this environment draws heavily on andragogy.
The paper will also clarify the obstacles on virtual learning through SL and make suggestions for the active immersive learning within the context of Distance Education.
Keywords: Second Life (SL); avatar-driven interaction; Instructional Systems Design (ISD); immersive learning platforms; 3D; instructional models, cognitive theory; ADDIE; PIE
Volume: 12 Number: 3/2 Special Issue on Second Life Applications in Distance Education, F
Dear readers of TOJDE,
TOJDE appears on your screen now as Volume 12, Number: 3/2. This issue covers as a Special Issue on ―Usage of Second Life Applications in Generally Education and Especially in Distance Education‖ field. Almost 9 months ago, I was planning to publish a book by agreement with IGI publishing, USA, on ―Usage of Second Life Applications in Generally Education and Especially in Distance Education‖ field. And also recently, I had signed a draft contract with IGI Publishing too. But, during this period I could not receive up enough chapters to complete this book project. So, according my ethic responsibility to my respected proposed authors, I changed my thoughts to publish their valuable studies as a special issue of TOJDE on this theme. In this special issue I published; 17 articles. And this time, 30 authors from 13 different countries are placed. These published articles are from Argentina, Austria, Denmark, Findland, Georgia, Germany, Grecee, India, Italy, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and USA.
SECOND LIFE AS A LANGUAGE LEARNING TOOL (EFL)
Over the last few years there has been an increased interest in Multi-User Virtual Environments (MUVEs), or virtual worlds, by instructional designers and developers. One of many instructional activities taking place in Second Life (SL) is language learning for English-as-a-foreign-language (EFL) students. Gartner Inc. (2007) says 80 percent of active internet users will have a ―Second Life (SL)‖ in the virtual world by the end of 2011. In this paper, the researches and use of SL in language instruction is examined and some suggestions are offered to both instructors and designers on how they can leverage of SL especially in higher education settings.
In addition to its advantages, the disadvantages are going to be discussed in this paper as well in order to approach this virtual world from an objective angle and give some really experience based ideas to the instructors and designers. Virtual worlds especially Second Life is first briefly summarized and then how SL can be used for language learning. Next the current situation of using SL in language learning and as a tool for practice with other language learners is examined. Then some advantages and drawbacks are mentioned. The paper is going to be concluded with some useful recommendations to the instructors and designers of instructional application of SL for effective teaching, learning and practice.
This paper describes that how MUVEs, primarily focusing on SL, can affect EFL programs and learners. Therefore students who learn English as a foreign language in higher education settings and who are using SL are going to be the main target of this review.
Keywords: Second Life-SL; virtual world; foreign-language (EFL); Multi-User Virtual Environments (MUVEs)
Riitta LISKI & Irma SYREN
EXPERIENCES OF OPERATING AND STUDYING IN SECOND LIFE: Conclusions for Training Design
The Educational Association Citizens ́ Forum SKAF ry is an educational institution for non-formal education. The Citizens‘ Forum has been an active Second Life participant since 2007, researching its potential and challenges in educational use and non- governmental organisation activities. The first training sessions were organised in 2008 on a block of land rented from EduFinland I island. Later, ownership was acquired of the Suomi ry (Finland ry) island, which was customised to serve Finnish organisations and non-governmental organisations (further NGO).
The Citizens‘ Forum‘s training courses have covered training in Second Life and the organisation of cooperative meetings and various other events in Second Life. The overall length of training sessions has been one month.
Each course has consisted of 3-5. 1.5 hour meetings in Second Life and interim tasks completed either individually or in small groups. In addition to Second Life, Moodle, an online learning environment, has been employed in which tasks, experiences and feedback have been gathered and which has also contained written summaries of what was learned during the Second Life meetings. The Second Life environment has also been regularly utilised in Citizens‘ Forum staff and various other work group work related meetings.Funding and ventures 2008: Ministry of Education special funding, Initiation of Second Life courses and construction of environment 2009-2010: ESF programme Open Learning Environments-AVO venture, development and implementation of Second Life educational programmes.
This article is based on practical experiences gained from
suitability of cooperative educational processes for Second Life
constructing a Second Life environment for educational use
suitability of Second Life technology and tools for education and team work practical methods related to educational situations .
Keywords: Second Life-SL; virtual world; Open Learning Environments-AVO; SKAF ry 31
STUDENTS‘ FIRST IMPRESSION OF SECOND LIFE: A Case From the United Arab Emirates
Emerging 3D virtual worlds such as Second Life can offer students with opportunities to enhance learning using rich collaborative asynchronous media. Virtual worlds are believed to impact the future of higher education and therefore, universities across the world are immersing themselves inside virtual worlds to establish a unique learning and research environments. This research examines the viability of Second Life as an educational platform from the perspective of a group of students in an Islamic society context. The students were attending one of the universities in the United Arab Emirates. The analysis indicates that students experienced both positive and negative aspects of Second Life. The results do encourage further experimentation in this positive novel way for learning.
Keywords: Online learning, Virtual Worlds, Culture sensitivity, Technology Adoption.
Ayse KOK & Zuhal TANRIKULU
A GRID-DEVELOPMENT FOR THE LEARNING AND TEACHING PRACTICE IN SECOND LIFE
This paper examines the emerging ideas to implement the usage of Second Life as an educational tool in a wide range of subject areas. The majority of the information used to create these 10 pedagogical approaches was derived from a series of participative inquiries, personal observations, formal and informal interviews, and documenting the perceptions of teachers and students using (and trying to use) Second Life as an educational tool. Ten pedagogical approaches have emerged thus far. Each section briefing explains the concept, illustrates the idea with examples, and provides implementation suggestions.
Keywords: Immersive learning, machinima, second life, virtual worlds
Chris INMAN , Vivian H. WRIGHT & Julia A. HARTMAN
USE OF SECOND LIFE IN K-12 AND HIGHER EDUCATION: A Review of Research
This study reviewed empirical research conducted in Second Life by educators since Second Life‘s launch in 2003. The study‘s purpose was to identify how Second Life is being used in both K-12 and higher education. The methodology, findings, and recommendations of 27 research studies were analyzed.
Researchers identified potential problems when using Second Life in education, including issues with the Second Life software and hardware requirements, a steep learning curve, and the possibility of students becoming exposed to distractions or inappropriate content.
Researchers discussed potential uses of Second Life including role-play, game and simulation creation, implementation within distance education programs, and the ability to encourage student-centered learning activities. Analysis also revealed several recommendations for educators intending to use Second Life.
Keywords: Second life; K-12, higher education
Mary ANNE CLARK
GENOME ISLAND: A Virtual Science Environment in Second Life
This article describes the organization and uses of Genome Island, a virtual laboratory complex constructed in Second Life. Genome Island was created for teaching genetics to university undergraduates but also provides a public space where anyone interested in genetics can spend a few minutes, or a few hours, interacting with genetic objects -from simple experiments with peas to the organization of whole genomes. Each of the approximately four dozen activities available in the island‘s various areas includes background information, model objects with data sets, and suggestions for data analysis.
The island also has a presentation theater, an indoor conference setting, and separate meeting spaces suitable for small group conversations. Clark describes some of the activities available on the island, offers advice for their use, and discusses the results of a pilot project that identified some pedagogical and technical challenges arising in this virtual setting.
Keywords: A virtual science environment; Second Life; Genome Island.
Mehmet FIRAT & Isıl KABAKCI YURDAKUL
VIRTUAL ETHNOGRAPHY RESEARCH ON SECOND LIFE VIRTUAL COMMUNITIES
The rise of digital technologies like 3D virtual worlds has the potential to open new directions in virtual ethnography researches. Although there has been a lot of discussion about conducting research in online spaces and in virtual games, there are few studies on conducting research in virtual worlds.
In this study, within a holistic perspective, the virtual ethnography research potential in Second Life was investigated vithe the help of a detailed participant observation research conducted by researchers in Second Life and from a holistic perspective. This research was conducted in the fall semester of the 2009-2010 academic years. In this study, researchers in the role of a participant observer conducted 8 observations in ethnographic focus. Also, some important methods and techniques that can be used in doing ethnographic research in Second Life are presented in this study.
Keywords: Second Life; virtual ethnography; participant observation; virtual communities.
Kadriye KOBAK & Yasin OZARSLAN
VIEWS OF STUDENTS ABOUT THE USE OF SECOND LIFE FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES
Multi-User Virtual Environments (MUVEs) such as Second Life (SL) are experiencing a rapid growth in the number of applications with educational potential. SL provides a space for constructivist learning, socialization, exploration, discovery, and creativity. The communicative, social nature of virtual learning allows students to demonstrate the skills and strategies they have acquired through utilization of social technology tools.
This study investigates higher education students‘ perceptions and experiences about Second Life in Educational Software Course at a Turkish State University. The aim of the study is to determine the perceptions, opinions and attitudes of students about use of this virtual environment for educational purposes. The research involved in-depth interviews with fifteen students using a semi-structured interview format. The findings represent student perceptions from a sufficiently diverse range of education faculty and educational software course.
Keywords: Second Life (SL), Virtual World, Problem-Based Learning, Learner Perceptions
Saziye YAMAN & Gulriz IMER
THE USE OF 2ND LIFE IN LANGUAGE TEACHING
Approaches and methods are often based on the assumptions that the process of language learning is complex in nature, non linear, and active. Learners are getting more in need of communication with a second/foreign language both inside and outside the classroom while instructions are witnessing a major paradigm shift within language teaching in our century. Virtual worlds have the potential to dramatically change the traditional nature of language teaching through 3D spaces, information and communication technologies, etc... Second Life (SL) Virtual World, as supplementing language instruction, has begun to shape both teachers and learners‘ interaction with language. Learners are facilitated with 3D spaces in their own reality and environment, allowing them to interpret and apply a variety of experiences and tasks. SL offers rich sources and dimensions, facilitating the changing nature of learning experience.
Keywords: English Language Teaching, Second Life, 3D Virtual World, Virtual Class
Pradeep Kumar MISRA
SECOND LIFE FOR TEACHER EDUCATION: Why, What and How
The virtual world of Second Life (SL) is extending the boundaries of when, where and how learning can happen beyond the realm of the traditional classroom. The SL has helped to highlight the wider use of virtual worlds for supporting a range of human activities and interactions for social and educational purposes. One such potential implication is the use of SL for the real world of teacher education. This argument is based on fact that SL allows teachers to create new identities for themselves and have personalized learning experiences. Keeping in view that SL experiences help teachers to improve their teaching in real situations, present paper discusses about the concept and modalities of SL and its implications for the world of teacher education. The discussion mainly revolves around three points i) why second life is useful for teacher education, ii) what opportunities it offered for teacher education, and iii) how to use it for teacher education. As essence, paper suggests a number of globally applicable strategies to ensure and promote the use of SL for betterment of teacher education.
Keywords: Second life, SL, Teacher education, Second life for teacher education
Maja PIVEC, Cristina STEFANELLI, Inger-Marie F. CHRISTENSEN & Jutta PAUSCHENWEIN
RECOMMENDATIONS FOR USING THE 3D VIRTUAL ENVIRONMENTS FOR TEACHING: Why, How and Use cases
The AVATAR project included a global course for teachers, which was delivered remotely over a period of four months. The course had nine modules, distributed via e- learning and v-learning platforms. One module supports creation of new teaching material by course participants and its piloting with their students. The course was created in English language, however to support the learning curve of multilingual and international groups, several modules were moderated in national groups.
This paper details the rational behind the course, documents two case studies of completed projects within a virtual world, highlights the challenges and notes the successes, and culminates with conclusions and recommendations of running courses and lessons within an online 3D virtual world.
Keywords: Avatar; v-learning; 3D virtual world; teaching material
Nil GOKSEL-CANBEK, Maria MAVROMMATI & Ugur DEMIRAY
LIFELONG LEARNING THROUGH SECOND LIFE: CURRENT TRENDS, POTENTIALS AND LIMITATIONS ￼
Lifelong Learning (LLL) has been a remarkable response to people-centered educational demand of 21st century. In order to provide effective formal, non-formal, and informal learning, immersive educational activities undertaken throughout life should be aimed to create a learning society in which people can experience individual and collective learning with no constrains of time or location. The concept of lifelong learning within the context of distance immersive education encompasses diverse 3D activities.
The three dimensional, Web-based structured activities supported by distance learning technologies can be viewed as interactive tools which foster LLL. In this perspective, Second Life (SL) can be regarded as one of the learning simulation milieus that allow learners to participate in various educational LLL activities in individual or group forms. The following paper examines how SL, taking advantage of its simulative nature and the possibility for creative interaction among participants, which are also common in games, allows the learners to participate in immersive constructivist learning activities.
The article will also touch on the current uses of SL as a tool for LLL, as well as its potentials for further development according to the current trends in adult education. Further, the authors will discuss its limitations and will make suggestions towards a more complete pedagogical use.
Keywords: Second Life (SL), Lifelong Learning, immersive education, 3D, virtual game
Nil GOKSELCANBEK & Gülsün KURUBACAK
LETS DIVE INTO A VIRTUAL WORLD AND SEE WHAT IS BENEATH SECOND LIFE
This paper divulges the results of a master thesis study that evaluates the learner- course owner (instructor) interaction within University-Community Partnerships (UCPs) by giving samples on SL milieu. The study briefly demystifies 3D interaction in virtual reality. The dimensions of immersive learning and learner-course owner (instructor) interaction are explored within the theoretical frame of Mindtool Model (Jonassen, 1996) and Interaction-Communication Theory (Holmberg, 1989). The foundations of learning and communication are appraised on a matrix from which semi-structured and open-ended survey questions are formulated. The SL platform is assessed in terms of qualitative analyses of matrix based-foundations which are sent to four (4) distance education experts across the world. With the survey responses collected on a voluntary basis, 189 themes and 185 main themes on learner-course owner interaction are generated. The results demonstrate that Second Life as a learning mindtool uses Internet-based distance learning technologies effectively; however, it still needs appropriate andragogical adjustments for the efficacy of online interaction.
Keywords: Second Life (SL), learner-course owner interaction, University-Community Partnerships (UCPs)
THE NATURE OF USING VIRTUAL WORLDS BY A CHILD AS A LEARNING PLATFORM: A Case Study
The development of new technologies is found inevitable and children interests toward online platforms and virtual worlds are rapidly growing. In addition, there is a consensus that use of technology for primary or secondary school education is effective for achievement and motivation. In research and practice there are many educational implementations of technology in classrooms that were found useful.
Similar to most qualitative studies, the purpose of this study also cannot be narrowed down to a single sentence but the overarching aim of the study is to explore the nature of using virtual worlds as a learning platform during. The theoretical background of this study is rooted from the constructivism and constructionism learning approaches. Consisted with its theoretical framework, this study has followed a qualitative case study research method to explore the nature of the construct. The case is a bounded system that is narrowed to a single case (Merriam, 1988; Stake, 1995; Yin, 2003). There are various types of data collected within this system. Based on the data collected and the research-suggested case study data analysis approaches, the following themes were emerged; realty, learning by discovering, learning by design, scaffolding and chunking information, and real life desires.
After using Whyville virtual platform, the aim of this study was expected to start new discussion on young children using more complex virtual worlds such as Second Life. Thus, the results of this study could be guidance for transmission process of children toward Second Life type of virtual worlds. Even though a further discussion may need about the nature of using the virtual worlds, the primary findings of these case studies suggest some practical implications for children‘s education.
Keywords: Virtual worlds; Whyville; second life; children‘s learning; education technology.
Wolfram LAASER & Julio Gonzalo BRITO
SEMINAR ABOUT SERIOUS GAMES AND VIRTUAL WORLDS: An Experience of International Collaboration And Reflection
The educational possibilities of ICT, dizzying and exponentially growing every day, offer multiple alternatives of mediation for teaching, learning and communication.
Thus, the inclusion of video games and virtual worlds into educational context represents a qualitative leap that claims to significantly boost ways of communication and knowledge representation of the scenarios involved. Aware of this reality, in the framework of the Master of Technology Enhanced Learning at the National University of Cordoba, Argentina, a virtual seminar was offered to students to address the issue on the basis of invited lectures of worldwide recognized experts.
The format chosen for the seminar allowed the treatment of subjects not only through reading assignments and web quests to be discussed collaboratively but also included the state of the art experience of developers working in the field. The paper describes didactic design and technical solutions of the seminar format.
Keywords: Moodle, virtual classroom, educational games, virtual worlds, educational technology, game based learning, serious games.
SOTUNKI: An Island Of Education and Adventure
Last year some of the teachers of Sotunki Distance Learning Centre set out to find a new approach to teaching different subjects in Upper Secondary School. We wanted to do this by using social media and finally decided on using Second Life.
I think social media like Second Life can offer a lot to our students who study via internet and rarely meet each other or their teachers. In Second Life students can meet their teachers, guidance counselors and fellow students face to face and in real time. This brings more interaction to the learning process and gives the students a chance to get to know each other. Also the interaction in Second Life is slightly different – it gives us teachers a different kind of chance to get to know our students better in a more informal way.
There were many decisions to make when we first started building our school. We started by deciding on whether we wanted to have a traditional school building with traditional classrooms in it – and decided against it. Why repeat the real world in Second Life? What is the point of using a virtual world if not to benefit from the possibilities that the real world does not have? So we set out to do something new and extraordinary: instead of a school house we have a mountainous jungle waiting for explorers, and instead of classrooms we have lots of different innovations customized to fit the virtual world. It is important to us that students want to explore our island and learn while exploring it: learning can be a real adventure.
I chose the course of history of literature as my project because Second Life has wonderful tools for creating historical settings. Building a pathway came naturally too: the history of literature is linear by nature; a pathway is its natural form. There are plenty of time periods in literature that have distinctive styles but I could not include them all. Finally I decided to build information points for eight different stylistic periods.