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Title: Student Perceptions of Learning from a Distance through a Virtual World
Contributor(s): Gregory, Sue  (author)orcid 
Publication Date: 2014
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Abstract: Since 2008, the author, a Senior Lecturer in ICT Education at a regional university in Australia, the University of New England, has provided both on-campus and off-campus (online) students the opportunity to learn through the use of Second Life™, an immersive 3D virtual world. On-campus students were required to participate in these learning activities. Off-campus students participated on a voluntary basis. Off-campus students consisted of both under-graduate and postgraduate students, learning in the virtual world together and it is these students whose opinions and perceptions will be explored in this chapter. The responses to this learning environment has been varied, with off-campus students enjoying the experience because it gave them the perception of 'being there' in a face-to-face encounter with their peers and educator. Off-campus students study via distance education because they are unable to participate in on-campus face-to-face study due to a multitude of reasons such as work, family commitments, health issues, or social reasons. Off-campus study mode provides the opportunity for students to acquire a higher education degree without the need to be on campus to participate in lectures and workshops. All their learning is undertaken through resources provided through a learning management system. A virtual world is one other medium where these resources are provided and shared and students can participate in lectures and workshops, virtual tours, listen to guest lecturers and partake in learning experiences. This chapter explores the off-campus students' perceptions of their learning in the virtual world through examination of recorded conversations and responses to survey questions. Presented are the themes that emerged. Provided are the pros and cons to learning in a virtual world, from the perspective of an off-campus student.
Publication Type: Book Chapter
Source of Publication: At the Edge of the Rift, p. 79-86
Publisher: Inter-Disciplinary Press
Place of Publication: Oxford, United Kingdom
ISBN: 9781848883215
Fields of Research (FoR) 2008: 130306 Educational Technology and Computing
130103 Higher Education
Fields of Research (FoR) 2020: 390405 Educational technology and computing
390303 Higher education
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2008: 930203 Teaching and Instruction Technologies
930102 Learner and Learning Processes
930101 Learner and Learning Achievement
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2020: 160304 Teaching and instruction technologies
HERDC Category Description: B1 Chapter in a Scholarly Book
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Series Name: At the Interface
Editor: Editor(s): Sue Gregory, Paul Jerry and Nancy Tavares-Jones
Appears in Collections:Book Chapter
School of Education

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