Mere mortals creating worlds: low threshold 3D virtual environments for learning

Albion, Peter (2009) Mere mortals creating worlds: low threshold 3D virtual environments for learning. International Journal of Learning, 16 (6). pp. 663-678. ISSN 1447-9494

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The prevalence of computer games in popular culture and their demonstrable success at engaging players in complex activity requiring learning of new skills has generated wide interest in the potential of games and related 3D virtual environments for education. The process of design, developing, and deploying tailored virtual environments is typically expensive in terms of time and money, both of which are usually scarce in education. What educators need, especially in the initial period during which the educational affordances of virtual environments are being explored, is an approach that can support experimentation by educators with ideas for the application of virtual environments in support of pedagogy. Ideally such an approach would enable educators to test designs by rapidly developing and deploying virtual environments without requiring substantial technical support. Uptake of other technologies by educators has been encouraged by identifying tools that present relatively low barriers to use, ‘low threshold applications’ (LTA) (Gilbert, 2004). This paper will describe a project that has sought to develop tools and processes that support educators in working with 3D virtual environments in ways that encourage experimentation by facilitating easy development and adaptation of environments for particular pedagogical purposes. Examples of tools and environments that have been developed are described together with lessons learned in the course of the project.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Copyright is attributed to the author. Deposited with permission of publisher (Common Ground).
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Education
Date Deposited: 06 Nov 2009 04:15
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2013 23:25
Uncontrolled Keywords: 3D virtual environment; low threshold application; educational design
Fields of Research : 08 Information and Computing Sciences > 0806 Information Systems > 080602 Computer-Human Interaction
13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130306 Educational Technology and Computing
08 Information and Computing Sciences > 0801 Artificial Intelligence and Image Processing > 080111 Virtual Reality and Related Simulation
Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9302 Teaching and Instruction > 930203 Teaching and Instruction Technologies

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