VirtualWorldWatch – Spring 2010

The latest snapshot report on the use of virtual worlds in UK FE and HE has just been released by VirtualWorldWatch. The 45 page report provides a wide range of quotes from academics involved in using virtual worlds across the UK – and every report contains its own surprises. For me, one surprise was discovering SLOODLE being used in new places. More generally, virtual worlds seem to be steadily bedding themselves in in an increasing number of institutions – although at the majority of institutions it really is only the early adopters that are exploring virtual worlds.

Get the full report from here, and an excerpt from the report summary is reproduced below:

Summary

This snapshot report was put together against a backdrop of political and economic uncertainty. It comes, therefore, as a pleasant contrast to notice many cases of continuity, where academics are building on their uses of virtual worlds in previous academic years. It’s also good to welcome details of new sustainable virtual world projects and initiatives from universities such as Middlesex, Bristol and Bath Spa.

Specific subject areas, where several universities are using virtual worlds, continue to come to light. For example, previous snapshots have highlighted contributions from academics involved in midwifery, with at least four UK universities using Second Life to assist in the training of this practical skill. …

The global access capabilities of virtual worlds become more evident with each snapshot. As universities rely more (especially in these economically uncertain times) on overseas, remote, home-based and part-time students, so technologies that allow learning to take place far away from a physical campus become more useful.

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