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ERIC Number: ED557541
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 314
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3038-8232-6
Growth and Decline of Second Life as an Educational Platform
Mark, Christine Libby
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Southern Mississippi
"Second Life," a 3D online immersive virtual environment, emerged in 2003 and was predicted to become the predominant online course delivery platform by 2013. Educational institutions initially rushed to create a presence in the "Second Life;" however, after 2009 those same institutions were disappointed by their experiences and deserted the virtual world. This study sought to uncover the reasons for the rapid decline of such a highly lauded educational platform. Using a mixed methods research design, utilizing a qualitative phenomenology with in-depth personal interviews of higher education administrators followed by a detailed quantitative survey instrument, the researcher was able to explain the reasons the platform did not become a mainstream course delivery method. Students reported dissatisfaction with graphical quality and hardware issues, perceived lack of relevance, and usability issues. Instructors reported dissatisfaction with hardware issues, time issues, student acceptance, the lack of a clear reward system, especially with tenure and promotion and technical support issues. Instructional designers reported dissatisfaction with hardware issues, stakeholder engagement and interest, pedagogical value, time issues, and technical support issues. The findings provided insights for higher education administrators when considering the use of emerging technology for teaching and learning. For innovative educational solutions to be effective administrators should provide sufficient technological resources, improve stakeholder engagement and interest by providing better training and more personal attention to users, allow innovative efforts by faculty to be rewarded through the tenure and promotion process, improve their own attitude and buy-in surrounding the use of emerging technology for educational and learning activity delivery, and become more patient with commercially available software to allow for improvements to occur organically. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A