Proposal Title

The gamification of education: collaboration and identity in problem solving

Session Type

Interactive Presentation

Session Location

University Hall, ADP Center 1143

Start Date

30-5-2019 10:00 AM

End Date

30-5-2019 10:45 AM

Key Terms

gamification, collaboration, identity, engagement

Brief Abstract

This project is an investigation of the factors which affect the engagement and satisfaction of learners using a multi-user virtual immersive environment. The focus is on the roles that the social construction of knowledge, and a virtual identity, play in exploring a virtual environment for solutions to problems.

Proposal

This project is an investigation of the factors which affect the engagement and satisfaction of learners using a multi-user virtual immersive environment. The focus is on the roles that the social construction of knowledge, and a virtual identity, play in influencing the decision of learners to continue exploring a virtual environment for solutions to problems.

Can the gamification of tasks effectively motivate learners to continue? I invite you to try my new collaborative game in the virtual world of Second Life and see what you think!

Learning Outcomes

1) Participants will be able to socially collaborate on solving problems in a virtual world.

2) Participants will be able to explore the role of identity while solving problems in a virtual world.

Participants will have the opportunity to engage with solving problems in the virtual world. The creative gamification of tasks will require the social development of teams, and the formation of virtual identities, to collaboratively find solutions in an immersive environment. This project innovatively interweaves the Moodle LMS with the Second Life virtual world to engage students with creative tasks set in exciting virtual simulations, and use the LMS to check solutions and track progress.

Participants must be able to login to a Moodle course which provides context and access to the game, and then login to a Second Life account and teleport to the SLURL provided. Participants will be expected to have basic SL skills such as walking, right-click to sit, and keeping a folder to wear a new outfit. More advanced skills such as navigation via the mini-map and using camera controls will be developed in the game. Participants should have laptop speakers or headphones to hear audio clues. Use of a microphone for in-world voice is optional.

This presentation is based on my doctoral research study, which examined how multi-user virtual worlds can enhance learning. This study extended a prior VR-based model and then refined it to include two new constructs: virtual identity, and the perception of an environment that supports the social construction of knowledge. The fit of the two models was analyzed using structural equation modeling (SEM), and the results supported both the extension and the hypothesized refined model. Findings: VR features were found to indirectly impact on the learning outcomes, mediated by the perception of usability and the learning experience. The learning experience was measured by seven individual psychological factors: presence, virtual identity, motivation, cognitive benefits, agentic learning, social constructivism, and reflective thinking. These factors mediated the learning outcomes, measured by the perception of learning effectiveness and satisfaction, and may have a range of implications for the instructional design of learning activities using the virtual world.

This research blends a technology acceptance model (TAM) with the technology-mediated learning (TML) perspective to advance the development of a hybrid theoretical framework as a basis for future research into enhanced learning within a social virtual world.

The implications of this study for instructional design indicate that educators should:

  • provide students with time and training to customize an idealized avatar to represent their virtual identities

  • build on the unique affordances of the immersive virtual world to create simulations of authentic environments which engage the imagination and inspire the students

  • develop gamified environments which require collaboration to solve problems so they develop teamwork skills

  • develop gamified environments which require students to develop new learning identities so they can explore future possible selves

Examples of authentic virtual environments which require collaboration and skill-building to solve:

  1. Pirate Ship Battle game: https://youtu.be/ThPMBdtE3oQ

  2. Overview of virtual worlds for various learning outcomes:
    https://youtu.be/_j0Jev29iCE

Glossary of terms used in this proposal:

Virtual identity: a representation in the virtual world which depicts the user as an avatar through which an online identity can be developed and projected (Dickey, 2002).

VE: Virtual Environment - an environment presented by a communication medium which mediates the experience, and is not directly perceived by the five natural senses.

VE-based learning outcomes: A central purpose of learning using a virtual environment is to capitalize on the affordances of the technology to increase the acquisition of knowledge and the capability of the learner to perform effectively. The proposed new research model examines learning outcomes in both the cognitive and affective domains of knowledge.

3D VE: Virtual Environment - a virtual environment presented by visual display technology which simulates the spatial three dimensions.

VR: Virtual Reality - a virtual environment presented by some form of technology which creates a sense of presence in the perceiver. Some VR environments support the manipulation of virtual objects and changes in viewing perspective.

VW: Virtual World - a virtual environment presented by some form of technology which creates a sense of presence (or co-presence, or telepresence) in the perceiver. Generally virtual world environments support the manipulation of virtual objects and changes in viewing perspective. Virtual worlds also support two unique affordances: the creation of a long-term virtual identity to represent the user in-world, and the ability to make persistent changes to the world which remain even after the user has left. In many virtual worlds an avatar is used to visually embody the virtual identity of the user. A common alternative name for a virtual world is a multi-user virtual environment, or MUVE.

Presenter Website

Brant.Knutzen.se

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May 30th, 10:00 AM May 30th, 10:45 AM

The gamification of education: collaboration and identity in problem solving

University Hall, ADP Center 1143

This project is an investigation of the factors which affect the engagement and satisfaction of learners using a multi-user virtual immersive environment. The focus is on the roles that the social construction of knowledge, and a virtual identity, play in influencing the decision of learners to continue exploring a virtual environment for solutions to problems.

Can the gamification of tasks effectively motivate learners to continue? I invite you to try my new collaborative game in the virtual world of Second Life and see what you think!

Learning Outcomes

1) Participants will be able to socially collaborate on solving problems in a virtual world.

2) Participants will be able to explore the role of identity while solving problems in a virtual world.

Participants will have the opportunity to engage with solving problems in the virtual world. The creative gamification of tasks will require the social development of teams, and the formation of virtual identities, to collaboratively find solutions in an immersive environment. This project innovatively interweaves the Moodle LMS with the Second Life virtual world to engage students with creative tasks set in exciting virtual simulations, and use the LMS to check solutions and track progress.

Participants must be able to login to a Moodle course which provides context and access to the game, and then login to a Second Life account and teleport to the SLURL provided. Participants will be expected to have basic SL skills such as walking, right-click to sit, and keeping a folder to wear a new outfit. More advanced skills such as navigation via the mini-map and using camera controls will be developed in the game. Participants should have laptop speakers or headphones to hear audio clues. Use of a microphone for in-world voice is optional.

This presentation is based on my doctoral research study, which examined how multi-user virtual worlds can enhance learning. This study extended a prior VR-based model and then refined it to include two new constructs: virtual identity, and the perception of an environment that supports the social construction of knowledge. The fit of the two models was analyzed using structural equation modeling (SEM), and the results supported both the extension and the hypothesized refined model. Findings: VR features were found to indirectly impact on the learning outcomes, mediated by the perception of usability and the learning experience. The learning experience was measured by seven individual psychological factors: presence, virtual identity, motivation, cognitive benefits, agentic learning, social constructivism, and reflective thinking. These factors mediated the learning outcomes, measured by the perception of learning effectiveness and satisfaction, and may have a range of implications for the instructional design of learning activities using the virtual world.

This research blends a technology acceptance model (TAM) with the technology-mediated learning (TML) perspective to advance the development of a hybrid theoretical framework as a basis for future research into enhanced learning within a social virtual world.

The implications of this study for instructional design indicate that educators should:

  • provide students with time and training to customize an idealized avatar to represent their virtual identities

  • build on the unique affordances of the immersive virtual world to create simulations of authentic environments which engage the imagination and inspire the students

  • develop gamified environments which require collaboration to solve problems so they develop teamwork skills

  • develop gamified environments which require students to develop new learning identities so they can explore future possible selves

Examples of authentic virtual environments which require collaboration and skill-building to solve:

  1. Pirate Ship Battle game: https://youtu.be/ThPMBdtE3oQ

  2. Overview of virtual worlds for various learning outcomes:
    https://youtu.be/_j0Jev29iCE

Glossary of terms used in this proposal:

Virtual identity: a representation in the virtual world which depicts the user as an avatar through which an online identity can be developed and projected (Dickey, 2002).

VE: Virtual Environment - an environment presented by a communication medium which mediates the experience, and is not directly perceived by the five natural senses.

VE-based learning outcomes: A central purpose of learning using a virtual environment is to capitalize on the affordances of the technology to increase the acquisition of knowledge and the capability of the learner to perform effectively. The proposed new research model examines learning outcomes in both the cognitive and affective domains of knowledge.

3D VE: Virtual Environment - a virtual environment presented by visual display technology which simulates the spatial three dimensions.

VR: Virtual Reality - a virtual environment presented by some form of technology which creates a sense of presence in the perceiver. Some VR environments support the manipulation of virtual objects and changes in viewing perspective.

VW: Virtual World - a virtual environment presented by some form of technology which creates a sense of presence (or co-presence, or telepresence) in the perceiver. Generally virtual world environments support the manipulation of virtual objects and changes in viewing perspective. Virtual worlds also support two unique affordances: the creation of a long-term virtual identity to represent the user in-world, and the ability to make persistent changes to the world which remain even after the user has left. In many virtual worlds an avatar is used to visually embody the virtual identity of the user. A common alternative name for a virtual world is a multi-user virtual environment, or MUVE.

https://digitalcommons.montclair.edu/eldc/2019/Thursday/4