The research problem

Relatively speaking Second Life is a new platform and at the time this proposal was written and submitted to the ethics committee (mid 2008), Second Life was still in its infancy. The researcher’s own experience in teaching and learning (both blended and online), love for computer and video games and curiosity to explore what learning and teaching would look like in Second Life were the determining factor in the choice of the research topic.

The researcher’s aim in this study is to gain a deeper understanding of what learning and teaching possibilities a platform like Second Life could offer. The researcher draws no distinct between the use of Second Life for online/distance learning or blended learning, rather the focus in this research is to understand the multifaceted process of learning and teaching in Second Life and the unique pedagogical affordances Second Life offers and how it is being used or could be used in the process.

Research questions

The main research question:
  • What are the pedagogical implications of Second Life in education?
The sub questions for this research are:
  • What are the pedagogical affordances of Second Life?
  • What impact does the use of Second Life have on the teacher?
  • What are the issues, barriers and limitations of using Second Life in education?