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Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Reflective Learning in Virtual Worlds

A critical element in virtual world learning is the opportunity for the learner to reflect upon his or her experience. As a designer of a 3D virtual learning experience, you need to design part of the learning experience to include time for the learners to re-envision what they experienced and add meaning to that experience. Expert facilitators can make that possible by asking the right questions such as:
  • What did you feel as you went through that experience?
  • Where did you encounter trouble?
  • At anytime was your thinking not clear?
  • Did anything confuse you?
  • What lessons did you learn?
  • What skills did you apply?
  • What do you wish you knew how to do when you had that experience?
  • What would you do differently next time? Why?
  • To what degree, if any, where you confused, frustrated or angry? (or other emotion)
  • Where was your focus during that exercise?
Keep in mind that the debriefing process can be important for both a synchronous learning experience as well as an asynchronous experience. So as you are designing a 3D learning experience, ask your self these questions to help focus the exercise to include a robust and meaningful debriefing session:
  • Who Conducts Debriefing?
  • What Will be the Focus of the Debrief?
  • Will it be one-on-one or include the entire class?
  • How Does Instructor Observe?
  • Is the Debrief Provided in a Written Format?
  • Where does it take place?
Debriefing after experiential learning is a great way to make the learning "stick" and, if possible, take the time to teach learners how to conduct their own debriefing after any life learning experience and you will be providing them with an invaluable tool in their job as a life long learner. __
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