Most of the chapters in this book are extended papers from Research Learning in Virtual Environments (reLIVE08), an international conference held by the UK Open University in Milton Keynes in November 2008. Authors of the best papers and presentations from the conferences were invited to contribute to Research Learning in Virtual Worlds, the first book to specifically address research methods and related issues for education in virtual worlds.
The book covers a range of research undertaken in virtual worlds. It opens with an accessible introduction both to the book and to the subject area, making it an ideal springboard for those who are new to research in this area. The subsequent ten chapters present work covering a range of research methodologies across a broad discipline base, providing essential reading for advanced undergraduate or postgraduate researchers working in education in virtual worlds, and engaging background material for researchers in similar and related disciplines.
Anna Peachey is Director of Innovations at Eygus Ltd, the company responsible for coordinating the Open University UK presence in virtual worlds. She was Academic and Organising Chair of Research Learning in Virtual Environments 08 and is an editorial board member of if International Journal for Advanced Corporate Learning, the International Journal of Virtual and Personal Learning Environments and Impact, The Journal of Applied Research in Workplace E-learning. Anna is currently researching identity and community in virtual worlds as Teaching Fellow with the Centre for Open Learning in Math's, Science, Computing and Technology at the Open University, and has worked with students around the world using online and distance learning since 1995.
Dr Julia Gillen is a Senior Lecturer in Digital Literacies in the Literacy Research Centre, Lancaster University. She is interested in literacy, language, multimodality, technology and learning in both formal and informal settings. In 2007-8 one of her main interests was working with children in virtual worlds, in the Schome Park programme, as described in this book. Parallel research projects involved interactive whiteboards and the school dinners debate. She has also published widely on a variety of topics concerned with young children, recently co-editing Ann Cameron of the University of British Columbia the volume: A day in the life: An international study of two-year old girls (Palgrave Macmillan. Julia Gillen is also a co-editor of the Journal of Early Childhood Literacy. The Edwardian postcard is a further area of research, offering fascinating parallels and contrasts with the contemporary digital revolution. See http://www.literacy.lancs.ac.uk/profiles/julia-gillen for a current list of projects and publications.
Daniel Livingstone lectures on Computer Games Technology at UWS. Daniel is a co-funder of SLODDLE, co-chaired the first two Second Life Education workshops and initiated the HEA `Massively Multi-Learner' workshop series. Daniel is the lead investigator on the Eduserv funded project `Online Learning In Virtual Environments with Sloodle'.
Release date Australia
February 19th, 2010
Edited by Anna Peachey
Edited by Daniel J. Livingstone
Edited by Julia Gillen
Edited by Sarah Smith-Robbins