I Want My Avatar! This is fun!
Members of the Tampa Bay Suncoast Chapter of ASTD met new friends and mentors in their September 17, 2009, meeting. After greeting new chapter members in the real world, they were introduced to our Alaris™ mentors and citizens in our virtual world.
After exploring Alaris’s™ virtual offices, homes and towns, with avatars for guidance and residents engaging them with life stories and problems to solve, the ASTD members had a lot of questions. The Sealund team who attended the meeting with me helped field the questions, and ASTD members who had participated in the Alaris™ Beta tests shared their experiences, as well.
Oh, and they’re effective for learning, too!
All these experienced educators knew that virtual learning environments work well because they provide an immersive experience for learners – one where you have the challenge of working through problems one step at a time with immediate feedback. We had a great discussion of the power of exploratory learning, where you can try many solutions, and it’s safe to fail. You learn from missteps and try again.
In these times, with many HR managers having to lay off staff, training managers agreed that VLE-based training is a good tool, not only for learning, but also for keeping morale up among employees. VLE-based training shows that the employer cares about investing employees’ professional development.
What do you think? Please share your comments.