New Landscapes and New Eyes: The Role of Virtual World Design for Supply Chain Education

By Theo J. Bastiaens, Lincoln C. Wood and Torsten Reiners.

Published by Ubiquitous Learning: An International Journal

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: May 2, 2014 $US5.00

With the common availability of advanced educational technology, we are able to increase the emphasis on the design of learning experiences and benefit from the given flexibility and variety of opportunities to create learning spaces. As instructional design models become more commonplace we examine their role vis-à-vis with the fidelity of the experience while learning. High-fidelity experiences are known to be valuable in learning as they provide authenticity in learning and motivation; yet, high fidelity comes at the cost of greater investment. In this paper, we outline our experiments with two setups of differing levels of fidelity: using Second Life and the consumer-focused Oculus Rift Head-Mounted Display (HMD). We show qualitatively interpreted comments and user responses to demonstrate importance of the level of fidelity, uncover important elements, and relate back the fidelity to the learning experience. High-fidelity experiences can be supported by software and hardware that are now readily available but present the seductive opportunity to greatly improve participant engagement in the virtual environments presented.

Keywords: Instructional Design, Immersion, Virtual Reality, Second Life, Oculus Rift, Head-Mounted Displays (HMD), Fidelity

Ubiquitous Learning: An International Journal, Volume 6, Issue 1, May 2014, pp.37-49. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: May 2, 2014 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 534.599KB)).

Dr Theo J. Bastiaens

Chair, Instructional Technology and Media, Fernuni Hagen, Hagen, Germany

Dr. Theo Bastiaens is a professor of educational technology (since January 2012), director of the Institute of Educational Science and Media Research, and was, until recently, dean of the faculty of humanities and social sciences at the Fernuniversität in Hagen (Germany). He studied educational sciences at the Rijksuniversiteit Utrecht, Netherlands, and wrote his doctoral thesis “Working and Learning with Electronic Performance Support Systems” at the University of Twente, in the Netherlands (published in 1997). He holds a part-time professorship for educational technology at the Open University of the Netherlands. His research interest includes instructional design, authentic learning, and new technology (i.e. MOOC). He has published in this field and is a invited speaker at conferences and seminars. For AACE, he co-chaired E-learn 2007, E-learn 2009, and Ed-Media 2011. He is executive committee member of the World Conference on E-learning and an executive committee member and founder of the Global Learn Asia Pacific.

Dr. Lincoln C. Wood

Senior Lecturer, Department of Business Information Systems, Faculty of Business and Law, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand

Dr. Lincoln C. Wood is a senior lecturer in logistics and supply chain management at Auckland University of Technology and is a past undergraduate coordinator for the School of Information Systems at Curtin University. In 2010, he received the Outstanding Research Award at the International Higher Education Conference and he is a project co-leader on OLT Grant (2012) “Development of an Authentic Training Environment to Support Skill Acquisition in Logistics & Supply Chain Management.” As a qualitative data analysis expert, Dr. Wood will assist the planning for and evaluation of the evaluation data, focusing on the analysis of dynamics of learner participation in MOOCs.

Dr. Torsten Reiners

Senior Lecturer, School of Information Systems, Curtin Business School, Curtin University, Perth, Western Australia, Australia

Dr. Torsten Reiners is a project leader on the OLT Grant (2012) “Development of an Authentic Training Environment to Support Skill Acquisition in Logistics & Supply Chain Management” and participated in VirtualPREX (ALTC grant, lead by Sue Gregory). Dr. Torsten Reiners is a senior lecturer in logistics at Curtin University in Australia. His research and teaching experiences are in the areas of operations research (i.e., modelling, algorithm development, meta-heuristics, and simulation), fleet and maritime logistics, supply chain, information systems, and emerging technologies. His interests include instructional design, development of adaptive learning environments, distant collaboration, and mobile learning, which is also manifested in his PhD Thesis about adaptive learning material in the field of operations research. He participated in multiple projects to use 3D spaces for learning support. He coordinated multiple industry projects in Germany.