4 hours ago
Monday, July 29, 2013
Last week in Second Life, the Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education conference, also known as the VWBPE, took place. Over four days from July 24 to 27, there were various discussions at the sims designated for the event and at various university areas across Second Life. While most of the events were lectures and talks, there were also building classes and times scheduled for DJ music sessions, plus a raffle. Gentle Heron of Virtual Ability gave the opening keynote address (Youtube link). Daniel Voyager estimated the number attending this event alone at over a hundred.
There were a number of topics, such as a few around the subject of the use of virtual worlds for the purpose of education. There was one discussion by Jo Kay about the use of Minecraft to teach children. Yours truly wasn't able to see most off the events that caught attention. One which I did was AgileBill Firehawk's "Confessions of a Quest Designer," in which he used "gamification" to get students to learn. Another was Kristy Handrick's (Hsiao-Chen Han) discussion about using Second Life to conduct research.
On the day the conference opened, Linden Lab had announced the return of it's 50% discount for educational and nonprofit sims. The news was naturally greeted with cheers at the conference, and some thought it had been timed to go along with the start of the WVBPE.
The Closing Keynote was done by Dave Cormier (youtube link). Pooky Amsterdam conducted the awards ceremony.
The WVBPE conference is a yearly event, with information available at http://www.vwbpe.org/ , and has a both Second Life and Facebook groups.