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Truly Immersive: Virtual Environments
Jun 2nd, 2011
2:30 PM - 3:15 PM
Session Type: Experience IT: Hands-On Lab
This special "Experience IT" session is designed to offer a hands-on, highly interactive introduction to 3-D, multi-user virtual environments (also called virtual worlds) and explore their potential impact for professional development and the classroom. This session will provide an introduction to virtual environments and potential uses.
A virtual world is an immersive online environment whose "residents" are avatars representing individuals who participate through the Internet. Many institutions are experimenting with virtual worlds for educational purposes, allowing students and educators to interact with peers, visit "distant" locations, attend conferences and meetings, or even develop their own learning environments. Virtual worlds may foster constructivist learning by placing students in a context that challenges them to learn without explicit learning objectives and assessment.
The virtual world Second Life (http://secondlife.com) will be used as an example, and participation within the actual environment is encouraged. Experience is not necessary, but you may wish to go to the "View Session Resources " section (linked below), click the Resources tab, and view the Second Life Tutorial to get a head start and set up your free account. You may download and install the Second Life program in advance and bring your laptop or iPad to follow along. Note: Some systems may not meet requirements, so please test in advance if you wish to log in during the session. Also, iPad users will require additional software. Directions and technical requirements are accessible by viewing the tutorial. Seating will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis.