Andragogical characteristics and expectations of University of Hawaiʻi adult learners in a 3D multi-user virtual environment

Meeder, Rebecca Lee
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[Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [August 2012]
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The purpose of this study was to discover which andragogical characteristics and expectations of adult learners manifested themselves in the three-dimensional, multi-user virtual environment known as Second Life. This digital ethnographic study focused specifically on adult students within the University of Hawaiʻi Second Life group and their learning characteristics and expectations within Second Life. Methods used for data collection included participant observation of four University of Hawaiʻi classes, faculty interviews, and student focus groups. All data collection occurred within the Second Life environment. Fifty-five students were involved in the observation portion of the study, six students were involved in the focus groups, and three instructors participated in the interviews. Andragogical characteristics and expectations were observed to be manifested by the adult learners. The faculty interviews and student focus groups confirmed these characteristics. Pedagogical characteristics and expectations were observed and confirmed in the focus groups and interviews as well. Constant comparative method was used to categorize and analyze the data. The analysis of the data revealed a relationship between the andragogical and pedagogical characteristics. Results indicate that the use of pedagogical instruction by instructors may result in the manifestation of andragogical characteristics by adult learners within the Second Life environment. However, more research is needed to confirm the relationship between the two.
Ph.D. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2012.
Includes bibliographical references.
andragogy, virtual worlds, Second Life
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Theses for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (University of Hawaii at Manoa). Education.
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