Gerald Stapleton and Philip Bertulfo from the Department of Medical Education at the University of Illinois – Chicago gave a great talk at the School of Human Ecology on the University of Wisconsin – Madison Campus on March 2, 2011. Their talk provided an overview of worldwide efforts to harness virtual worlds like Second Life and Open Sim for higher education. Their presentations illustrated how academic institutions, businesses, and foundations are using virtual spaces and game-based landscapes as interactive learning spaces.
Stapleton is the founder and managing facilitator of the Second Life Island New World Clinic, home of the New World Initiative for Clinician Education which is exploring the use of game-based and virtual reality environments as complimentary learning spaces for clinical education. During the presentation a live demonstration of how virtual spaces can be used to develop and hone clinician interviewing skills was facilitated.
Both Stapleton and Bertulfo have a wealth of knowledge and experience using virtual spaces as an integrated part of educational design. I have had the pleasure of working on several projects with Stapleton in the the past and look forward to future collaborative endeavors.