Digital History and SL

As part of my Digital History class, I am planning on having my students experiment with Second Life. In fact, I am planning on teaching the class in SL a couple of times. I also wanted to see how well Sloodle worked with SL. During the first week of class, I asked my students to see if they could create an account, choose an avatar, log in to SL, and then make it to IUP’s Crimson Island. I have to admit to being disappointed in the results so far – only 4 students have been able to accomplish this and one of those was already very proficient in SL before the class started. The problems facing the students are unfortunately varied in nature so it isn’t simply fixing one thing, but several things.

On the bright side, I learned at my SL coordination committee meeting today that several departments/colleges at IUP are in the process of purchasing more SL islands. As IUP expands its presence in SL, this will allow us to do much more than we are currently doing. Our main island is very full and limits faculty who are interested in trying out SL from building or experimenting with scripts. I am meeting with the folks who are working on Archaeology Island tomorrow and will give you an update on how things are progressing.

RSM

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