Second Life Best Practices in Education - 2007 International Conference

Second Life Best Practices in Education - 2007 International Conference

The presentation schedule for May 25, 2007 (in SLT / PST)

8:00 AM SLT / 11:00 AM EST
Suzi Mazzenga (Xirconnia Morphett-SL)
Moderator: Meriwether Voom (SL)
Drawing on Second Life Experiences to Enrich the First Life

Points for Discussion: 1. Virtual Self-Awareness vs. Self-Awareness in Real life 2. Using SL to Expand Imagination 3. Using SL to Enhance Group Dynamics 4. Gaining across-the-board Self-Awareness by Becoming Your Exact Opposite

For the fact that this conference is a complete "in-world" experience, it felt amazingly like I was attending a lecture in a room. In the least, it was about as exciting as one.

I should be clear: she was not boring. It was just not the kind of thing that would get you revved up about SL. It really didn't showcase SL as being a good way to conduct interactions or to engage learners. For example, she spent the whole conference presenting via keyboard in the chat, and not through a voice broadcast in SL. It was a bit tedious and one-way in it's communication. She also came across as very young, idealistic, and obviously biased in favor of using SL.

Despite those niggling things, she spent a good amount of time discussing how creating and changing your avatar is a consuming and personally revealing experience. Then she continued on to discuss some pedagogical aspects or themes that could be addressed in SL: gender differences, perception, identity, and the process of self-definition. I personally found that this might be useful for helping first-year freshmen transition between a child's life and an adult's life ... maybe through helping them create both their SL and RL identities at the same time?

Overall, I wasn't particularly wowed with Suzi's presentation, but her enthusiasm was transparent. If nothing else, it helped to conjure up some ideas about using SL ... so it wasn't a bad way to start out the in-world day.