Social Networking

San Jose State Works with Angel Learning on Second Life Integration

San Jose State University (SJSU) School of Library and Information Science (SLIS) and Angel Learning are collaborating on a project to explore the integration of the Angel Learning Management Suite (LMS) and the Second Life virtual world. The work will focus on how student results from activities in virtual worlds can be securely shared with the Angel LMS. The expected outcome of the project is an Angel dropbox that students can use to share evidence of their work from within Second Life.

Jeremy Kemp, assistant director of the SLIS Second Life Campus, will lead the project. Kemp keeps the official wiki for educators using the Second Life immersive environment and previously helped develop the Sloodle integration between an open source course management system and Second Life. Under Kemp's leadership, SLIS opened its Second Life island about a year ago. The school's graduate students use it to meet in virtual spaces with their instructors and peers, construct 3D objects and exhibits, and make presentations through their avatars.

"We are pleased to join with Angel Learning on this shared exploration," said Ken Haycock, SLIS director. "Together, we hope to learn more about how to successfully integrate two key tools that play a vital role in today's higher education environment--combining the engaging qualities of 3D settings with the sound pedagogical framework of a world-class learning management system."

"Second Life is a fascinating glimpse of the union of synchronous and social technologies, and Jeremy and his team have distinguished themselves as thought leaders in integrating them with LMS technologies," said Ray Henderson, chief products officer at Angel Learning. "This new virtual drop box offers an intriguing way for students to share evidence of their activity in a virtual world with faculty through a mechanism familiar to the LMS."

This announcement follows Angel's introduction of a Second Life "nugget" in recently released version 7.3 of the Angel LMS, which provides a link from the learning management system to the Angel Learning Isle in Second Life, inaugurated in May 2007.

Angel Learning Isle is open to educators for experimentation in the use of virtual collaboration technologies in online learning.

The Angel Learning Isle customer-led steering committee has published a paper, "The Power of Virtual Worlds in Education," for those interested in learning more about using SL in education.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at dian@dischaffhauser.com or on Twitter @schaffhauser.

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