Immersive Worlds for Learning eXperience+:
Engaging users in the zone of proximal flow in Second Life 

webmeetingsVirtual Collaboration plays an increasing role among students, but also between innovative universities to run Communities of Practice and exchange benchmarking. Universities are currently engaged in the transfer of knowledge and best practices with the private sector focusing on stakeholder collaboration as one way for output-oriented quality development and to attract sponsors for research projects. Such new collaboration forms become an engaging factor for Virtual Collaboration and eLearning. Multi-user virtual environments such as Second Life (SL) can facilitate users from  diverse sectors for creative group virtual collaboration due to the various applications of constructivist instructions, e.g. with narrative anchors, and connectivist approaches.

Dynamic interactions take place via users’ Avatars working as alternative egos facilitating the development of empathy among the users; supported by such enriched environment, they also aid in building immediate strong ties between the group members. Such acceleration of the socio-cultural part of learning leads to rapid immersion for virtual collaboration.

In SL, all educational material is integrated into the tools provided; also virtual interactions are immediately seen by all participants. Thus, SL unlocks different training possibilities for advanced Learning eXperience+ (LX+); LX+ is the creation of immediate, deeply immersive and memorable learning experience in SL.   Distance training is accelerated and deepened engaging trainees within a learning zone, called the Zone of Proximal Flow (ZPF). In ZPF peer-to-peer collaboration and learning occurs between the boarders of creative challenge and anxiety. Our LX+ approach with ZPF was implemented in an Innovation Management eCourse in Moodle and SL.

Authors : Niki Lambropoulos, Rolf Reinhardt, Stylianos Mystakidis, Dimitris Tolis, Sophi Danis & Alain Gourdin

Affiliation: Immersive Worlds LANETO Team (http://immersive-worlds.com/) & University of West Paris  (http://www.univ-upgo.fr/upgo/langue-en/)

Contact: nikilambropoulos@gmail.com