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dc.contributor.authorApostolellis, Panagiotisen_US
dc.date.accessioned2017-04-15T08:00:16Z
dc.date.available2017-04-15T08:00:16Z
dc.date.issued2017-04-14en_US
dc.identifier.othervt_gsexam:10329en_US
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10919/77413
dc.description.abstractMuseums are rich and complex learning experiences, using a variety of interactive approaches to engage their audiences. However, the largely unstructured nature of free-choice learning calls for alternative approaches that can effectively engage groups of school age students with diverse cultural backgrounds. In these informal learning spaces employing digital content, classroom-size student groups do not get adequate exposure to content and if they do, it is either through individual interactions with digital exhibits or in a passive style instruction offered by a museum docent to the whole group. This research aims to identify which elements of collocated group collaboration, virtual environments, and serious games can be leveraged for an enhanced learning experience for small and large groups of middle school students. We created a conceptual framework based on the Contextual Model of Learning in museums (John H. Falk and Dierking, 2000) and the most effective educational elements of Virtual Environments (VEs) and Serious Games, in order to increase engagement and social presence and facilitate learning. We then developed C-OLiVE (Collaborative Orchestrated Learning in Virtual Environments), an interactive virtual learning environment supporting group collaboration, which we used as a testbed to respond to our research questions. Our overall hypothesis is that synchronous, collocated, group collaboration will afford greater learning and an improved game experience compared to the conventional approaches used in these spaces so far. We ran three experiments and a case study with 790 students in private and public middle schools, summer camps, and museums both in the US and in Greece. Findings partly supported our hypothesis, mainly during our small group interaction experiments, in which simultaneous interaction of students was found to be associated with increased learning. Guidance of a passive experience was effective in facilitating the more cognitively challenged group of students in a Greek museum. Our audience interaction studies revealed increased retention of information two days after the game. Agency was found to significantly predict learning in all our studies. Engagement and social presence were mostly correlated with higher levels of involvement and agency in the game.en_US
dc.format.mediumETDen_US
dc.publisherVirginia Techen_US
dc.rightsThis item is protected by copyright and/or related rights. Some uses of this item may be deemed fair and permitted by law even without permission from the rights holder(s), or the rights holder(s) may have licensed the work for use under certain conditions. For other uses you need to obtain permission from the rights holder(s).en_US
dc.subjectInteractionen_US
dc.subject3D gamesen_US
dc.subjectvirtual environmentsen_US
dc.subjectinformal learningen_US
dc.titleEvaluating Group Interaction and Engagement using Virtual Environments and Serious Games for Student Audiences in Informal Learning Settingsen_US
dc.typeDissertationen_US
dc.contributor.departmentComputer Scienceen_US
dc.description.degreePh. D.en_US
thesis.degree.namePh. D.en_US
thesis.degree.leveldoctoralen_US
thesis.degree.grantorVirginia Polytechnic Institute and State Universityen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineComputer Science and Applicationsen_US
dc.contributor.committeechairBowman, Douglas Andrewen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberOgle, Jeffrey Todden_US
dc.contributor.committeememberChmiel, Margareten_US
dc.contributor.committeememberNorth, Christopher L.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberPerez-Quinonez, Manuel A.en_US


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