An Investigation into Cooperative Learning in a Virtual World using Problem-Based Learning

Vanessa Parson, Simon Bignell

Abstract


Three-dimensional multi-user virtual environments (MUVEs) have the potential to provide deeply experiential learning qualitatively similar to that found in the real world. MUVEs offer a pedagogically-driven immersive learning opportunity for educationalists that is cost-effective and enjoyable. A family of digital virtual avatars was created within Second Life® to investigate the implementation of a problem-based learning (PBL) task within an MUVE. The consensus among tertiary level educators was that the experience provided more immersion and engagement than traditional methods of technological provision, leading to potentially increased depth of learning. PBL appears to be an effective tool for aiding learning within immersive three-dimensional MUVEs.

Keywords


cooperative learning; problem-based learning, interactive learning environments; immersive learning; learning communities; teaching/learning strategies; virtual worlds; Second Life

Full Text:

PDF

References


Aldrich, C. (2009). Learning online with games, simulations, and virtual worlds: Strategies for online instruction (Vol. 23). Jossey-Bass.

Bignell, S. & Parson, V. (2009). Best Practices in Virtual Worlds Teaching: A guide to using problem-based learning in Second Life (PREVIEW-Psych project guide) http://previewpsych.org/?p=200

Bignell, S. & Parson, V. (2011). Case Study 5: Moving into virtual worlds, JISC: HEFCE, retrieved from http://www.jisc.ac.uk/media/documents/programmes/elearning/digiemerge/5_JISC_EmPDA_Derby.pdf

Braun, V., & Clarke, V. (2013). Successful qualitative research: A practical guide for beginners. London: Sage.

Braun, V., & Clarke, V. (2006). Using thematic analysis in psychology. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 3(2), 77-101.

Childress, M.D. & Braswell, R. (2006). Using Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games for Online Learning. Distance Education, 27(2), 187-196. DOI: 10.1080/01587910600789522

de Freitas, S. D., & Neumann, T. (2009). The use of ‘exploratory learning ’for supporting immersive learning in virtual environments. Computers & Education, 52(2), 343-352.DOI: 10.1016/j.compedu.2008.09.010

de Freitas, S., Rebolledo-Mendez, G., Liarokapis, F., Magoulas, G., & Poulavassilis, A. (2010). Learning as immersive experiences: using the four-dimensional framework for designing and evaluating immersive learning experiences in a virtual world. British Journal of Educational Technology, 41(1), 69-85. DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-8535.2009.01024.x

Esteves, M., Fonesca, B., Morgado, L., & Martins, P. (2011). Improving teaching and learning opf computer programming thought the use of the Second Life virtual world. British Journal of Educational Technology, 42(4), 624-637.

Falloon, G. (2010). Using avatars and virtual environments in learning: what do they have to offer?. British Journal of Educational Technology. 41(1), 108-122. DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-8535.2009.00991.x

Gazzard, A. (2009). The avatar and the player: understanding the relationship beyond the screen. In G. Rebolledo-Mendez, F. Liarokapis & S. de Freitas (Eds), Proceedings of the IEEE Games and Virtual Worlds for Serious Applications conference, Coventry, UK (pp. 190—193). Proceedings of the 1st IEEE International Conference in Games and Virtual Worlds for Serious Applications, IEEE Computer Society, Coventry, UK, 23—24 March. DOI: 10.1109/VS-GAMES.2009.11

Hemmi, A., Bayne, S., & Land, R. (2009). The appropriating and repurposing of social technologies in higher education. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 25(1), 19-30. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2729.2008.00306.x

Hinrichs, R. & Wankel, C. (Eds). (2011). 3D Virtual World Learning Handbook, Bingley, UK: Emerald Publishing

Hobbs, M., Brown, E., & Gordon, M. (2006). Using a virtual world for transferable skills in gaming education. Innovation in teaching and learning in information and computer sciences, 5(3), 42-55. DOI: 10.11120/ital.2006.05030006

Hrastinski, S. (2008). Asynchronous & Synchronous E-Learning, Eduserv Quarterly, 4, 51-55.

Jarmon, L., Traphagan, T., Mayrath, M., & Trivedi, A. (2009). Virtual Teaching, experiential learning and assessment: an inter-disciplinary communication course via Second Life, Computers and Education, 53: 169-182.

Johnson, D. W., Johnson, R. T., & Smith, K. A. (1991). Cooperative Learning: Increasing College Faculty Instructional Productivity. ASHE-FRIC Higher Education Report No.4. Washington, D.C.: School of Education and Human Development, George Washington University.

Johnson, L.F., & Levine, A.H., (2008). Virtual worlds: inherently immersive, highly social learning spaces. Theory into Practice, 47, 161-170. DOI: 10.1080/00405840801992397

Kamel Boulos, M.N., Hetherington, L., & Wheeler, S. (2007). Second Life: an overview of the potential of 3-D virtual worlds in medical and health education. Health Information and Libraries Journal, 24, 233-245.

Kolb, D.A. (1984). Experiential learning: experience as the source of learning and development. Englewood Cliffs: NJ. Prentice-Hall.

Mayrath, M.C., Traphagan, T., Jarmon, L., Trivedi, A., & Resta, P. (2010). Teaching in virtual worlds: factors to consider for instructional use of Second Life, Journal of Educational Computing Research, 43(4): 403-444. DOI: 10.2190/EC.43.4.a

Messinger, P. R., Stroulia, E., Lyons, K., Bone, M., Niu, R. H., Smirnov, K., & Perelgut, S. (2009). Virtual worlds–past, present, and future: New directions in social computing. Decision Support Systems, 47(3), 204-228.

Newble, D. I., & Clarke, R. M. (1986). The approaches to learning of students in a traditional and in an innovative problem-based medical school. Medical Education, 22, 26-273. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2923.1986.tb01365.x

Okutsu, M., Delaurentis, D., Brophy, S., & Lambert, J. (2013). Teaching in an aerospace engineering design course via virtual worlds: a comparative assessment of learning outcomes, Computers and Education, 60:288-298. DOI: 10.1016/j.compedu.2012.07.012

Parson, V. & Bignell, S. (2011). Using problem-based learning within 3D virtual worlds, in Hinrichs, R. and Wankel, C. (Eds.), Transforming Virtual World Learning: Cutting-edge technologies in higher education, Vol. 4, pp. 245—265. Emerald Group Publishing Limited: Teynampet, India.

Poikela, E. (2004). Developing criteria for knowing and learning at work: towards context-based assessment. Journal of Workplace Learning, 16(5), 267-274.

Salmon, G. (2009). The future for (second) life and learning. British Journal of Educational Technology. 40(3), 526-538. DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-8535.2009.00967.x

Savin-Baden, M. (2007). A Practical Guide to Problem-based Learning Online. London: Routledge.

Savin-Baden, M. (2010). A Practical Guide to using Second Life in Higher Education. Maidenhead: McGraw Hill.

Savin-Baden, M., & Wilkie, K. (Eds.). (2006). Problem-based learning online. Open University Press.

Voyager, D. (2015). Second Life Metrics [Web log post]. Retrieved from http://danielvoyager.wordpress.com/sl-metrics/

Wasko, M., Teigland, R., Leidner, D., & Jarvenpaa, S. (2011). Stepping into the internet: New ventures in virtual worlds. MIS Quarterly, 35(3), 645-652.

Windsor, J.A. (2009). Role of simulation in surgical education and training. ANZ Journal of Surgery, 79, 127-132. DOI: 10.1111/j.1445-2197.2008.04829.x

Yellowless, P.M. (2006). Education about Hallucinations Using an Internet Virtual Reality System: A Qualitative Survey. Academic Psychiatry, 30(6), 534-539. DOI: 10.1176/appi.ap.30.6.534




DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.24059/olj.v21i2.796