Nowadays teachers and trainers pay attention to the research and the experimentation of innovative pedagogical tools and approaches, such as simulation and 3D virtual world in order to improve the learning capacity of their students. Sometimes they invest time and financial resources to manage their updating courses, especially about how new technological potentialities can be exploited and integrated into their mainstream teaching methods. Also the use of different learning environments apart from the traditional class can stimulate the learning processes creating more educational opportunities and favoring the development of other approaches, such as collaborative learning.
This type of learning approach is represented by a situation where two or more individuals learn or try to learn something together aimed to the building of a common knowledge. Unlike the individual learning, people engage themselves in a collaborative learning process in order to capitalize on each other’s resources and competences. More specifically, the collaborative learning model is based on knowledge that can be constructed within a community in which members interact actively through sharing experiences and assuming asymmetric roles. In other terms, the collaborative learning refers to methodologies and specific environments where the students engage in a common task in which each individual depends on each other and is responsible for the others.
This article intends to describe two different practical experiences derived from TALETE and AVATAR projects on the use of 3D virtual worlds as learning environments to facilitate the collaborative learning among students.
Received: 6 May 2015
Revised: 15 May 2015