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Title: Comparison of Students Learning in a Virtual World
Contributor(s): Gregory, Sue (author)orcid 
Publication Date: 2013
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Abstract: The author, a Lecturer in ICT Education, has been teaching students, using the affordances of a virtual world, since 2008. Over this period of time, students have been participating in Second Life™ learning activities either as on-campus (compulsory) or off-campus (voluntary) students. Undergraduate and postgraduate students have participated in this learning. They have undertaken a variety of activities in Second Life™ to gain an understanding of how it could be used in their future careers as an educator. Some students were training to become teachers, others to become industry educators. Diverse groups of students gathered together to undertake their learning. Since 2008, off-campus students were able to choose whether to use a virtual world for their studies, as it could not be assured that they had suitable technology for the sessions. Numbers of students participating on a voluntary basis has increased over the years to approximately 100 students per year in the later years. On-campus students were required to participate in virtual world sessions from 2010 onwards. 239 off-campus and 284 on-campus students have participated in virtual world learning with the researcher. This chapter explores the differences in the students and their learning. Cross comparisons of student cohorts are presented. This research expands from 2008 to 2011 and examines differences in students' age, demographic, level, mode of study, activity and grades. A brief overview of the themes that arose from student perceptions of their learning through the examination of 52,000 lines of recorded text will be presented to provide context to the overall research results. Analysis of quantitative data from VirtualPREX role-plays from 2011 and 2012 also support the student perceptions of their learning in virtual world learning activities.
Publication Type: Book Chapter
Source of Publication: Riding the Hype Cycle: The Resurgence of Virtual Worlds, p. 123-134
Publisher: Inter-Disciplinary Press
Place of Publication: Oxford, United Kingdom
ISBN: 9781848882348
Field of Research (FOR): 130306 Educational Technology and Computing
139999 Education not elsewhere classified
130103 Higher Education
HERDC Category Description: B1 Chapter in a Scholarly Book
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Series Name: Critical Issues
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Appears in Collections:Book Chapter
School of Education

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