Tuesday, March 18, 2008

The New Virtual Field Trip: A Perspective from NC State's Entomology Bug World

Len Annetta, Asst. Professor of Science Education, North Carolina State UniversityMarta Klesath, Lecturer, Biological Sciences, North Carolina State University
Abstract: The presentation will give a development perspective to incorporating a virtual field trip into a newly created online entomology course. The field trip in the traditional course took students to a local farm to uncover the varying species of bugs at the farm, as well as where they lived and what they ate. As the course went online, the 3D virtual environment enabled virtual students to share experiences similar to those of the traditional students while learning the same content.

My notes
Using a 3DVW to study bugs! A virtual field trip.
How to integrate 3DVW with teaching? (hmm, tech led, but let's see...)
Useful for visualisation and adding taxonomy - better than real life field trip.
Not so interesting a session but people are asking if it is important that the students are made to walk in a 3DVW (when they could fly or teleport). I thought flying or teleporting was like hyperlinking, hence loss of immersion and authenticity.
Mike Kelly says, "flying is also very useful - leads to survey knowledge vs route knowldege."

Q: Why Active Worlds over other 3DVWs?
Adobe Atmosphere was his first favourite space. Then Adobe stopped. First inclination Second Life but at the time Linden Labs weren't interested in Education. Also SL quite pornographic then. Active Worlds was set up for Education and he has since accumulated scripts and content for AWs. Communitiies and Help good for AWs.

Back channel: "The academic environment in SL has more or less separated itself from the rest of SL." Not sure what this means but i think the suggestion is SL is big enough to have many factions that needn't affect each other.


Blogger gs said...

thanks for the notes andrew. can you expand on the comment 'useful for visualisation and adding taxonomy - better than real life field trip'?

(still v sceptical about how 3DVWs provide a better way of interacting than other online means, let alone how they might be better than real life...hmmmm...)

12:26 PM  
Blogger Andrew Middleton said...

Anything's better than real life - sorry it's late ;-)

1:11 PM  
Blogger Andrew Middleton said...

OK - in answer to your Q - their students could interact with their field trip in whatever way it suited them (classic simulation benefit) and they could refer to and interact with notes (eg taxonomy) in a way that would not be so easy 'in the field'. Think of interaction not so much as in controlling one's limbs as in interrogating or in making contributions.

1:15 PM  
Blogger gs said...

anything's better than real life - with you on that one at times! :)

thanks for the explanation - i get the interaction as interrogation or making contributions rather than controlling limbs...but that's what bothers me about 3DVWs. i guess i struggle with the added value of walking around a virtual world, as opposed to interacting via photos, text, video, chat, discussion, etc.

1:52 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home