Track: Panel Presentations and Roundtables

Title Hats, HUDs, Wands and Weather: Building Activities for Engagement in Second Life
Author(s): Marianne Riis; Robin Heyden; Liz Dorland; Mark Childs
Moderator(s):Elektra Panthar
Date Friday, March 18 08:00
Location: South Auxiliary
Abstract There are numerous barriers to engagement in virtual worlds. First, new residents must become familiar with the interface. Beyond technical considerations, the nature of their early experiences will determine whether and how quickly they will build an identification with their avatar and a reason to stay. Without this, it is likely that their interest in further engagement in the virtual world will lessen and their participation will drop off. A sense of presence and identity through embodiment and immersion is an important contributor to ongoing and satisfactory participation in the world and finding the motivation to continue to return until the technical and navigational thresholds are surmounted. This roundtable will discuss the essential acts, the “ah-ha” or Eureka moments, the triggering gizmos, features, activities or places that inspire students or colleagues (and have inspired us) to continue to participate. In other words, what works to help new residents pass these technical and navigational thresholds? The speakers will share their own stories drawn from their work with students in higher education, business people, health professionals, and education colleagues. Presentations will include demonstrations and audience participation. Panelists will elicit suggestions from attendees during the discussion. Was it discovering that you could design clothes or create buildings? Or perhaps visiting the Sistine Chapel, meeting others from around the world, or finding just the right hair was the catalyst that helped you to find the reason to be in Second Life. What was the final piece of the puzzle that brought your avatar to life? We want the audience to join our conversation.
Bio(s): Marianne Riis:
Robin Heyden:
Liz Dorland:
Mark Childs:

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