Facilitating Interdisciplinary Studies Using Open-Source Virtual Worlds
Tuesday, June 24 11:35-11:55 AM
Using open-source virtual-worlds applications can foster student engagement. This best practices session will explore techniques developed over several years of technology classroom and educational research experience facilitating interdisciplinary studies. To elucidate conclusions, the following examples will be used: Scaffolding collaborative writing with Second Life and OpenSimulator in Advanced Technical Writing, an inherently interdisciplinary course; using a grant-funded geoscience virtual island terraformed for exploration and data collection; and simulating the future in Weird Science, an interdisciplinary course based on the enduring question of what it mean to be human. Lessons learned will be highlighted, as well as future plans to use open-source virtual-worlds applications. Concluding remarks will include recommendations for effective instructional design strategies that can be applied in other classroom settings.