VWBPE At The Crossroads: Updates

Use of 3D virtual technology has been making its way into mainstream education, non-profit and business settings. This 8th Annual Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education Conference (VWBPE15) is the definitive event to present, discover and review ongoing developments in the field of 3D virtualization, its applications, and opportunities.

Over 3,300 people from 45 countries attended our last conference; 80 presentations in three days with keynote presenters from around the world; over 60 hours of video footage captured with thousands of views; blogs, articles and interviews, wiki’s, vast amounts of social media posts reaching even further audiences.

The 8th annual VWBPE presentation schedule is now live on the VWBPE website, where you can see that Ebbe Altberg, CEO of Linden Lab, joins us once again, this time as our opening keynote speaker.

The Quadrivium at VWBPE

This year’s VWBPE program features three focused discussions and topics of vital interest to our virtual communities: Gamification, Accessibility and Tools, and Educators and the Second Life Viewer.

The discussions will be facilitated by individuals with expertise and background on the topic, however, their role will be primarily to hear what you have to say. Here are the details:

Quadrivium Networking Topic: Gamification
Wednesday, March 18, 2015
2:00 – 2:50 p.m.
Location: SL VWBPE Quadrivium
Facilitator: Lloud Laffer

Quadrivium Networking Topic: Accessibility and Tools
Thursday, March 19, 2015
3:00 – 3:50 p.m.
Location: AvaCon Grid Main Stage
Facilitator: Chraeloos Resident

Quadrivium Networking Topic: Educators and the Second Life Viewer
Friday, March 20, 2015
2:05 – 2:55 p.m.
Location: VWBPE Main Auditorium
Facilitator: Oz Linden

Philanthropy for Education

Thanks to our generous benefactors, the Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education conference continues to be a huge success going into our eighth year. Contributions help support things such as:< ?p>

  • Website and domain name hosting;
  • Transcription of presentations for persons with hearing disabilities;
  • Preservation of archival materials;
  • Real-time live streaming of presentations and events;
  • Software licenses and subscriptions;
  • Royalties and licenses for copyright materials;
  • Tools, textures, sculpt maps, and mesh objects;
  • In-world tools, scripted objects, and animations;
  • Social activities, and
  • Many many more.

What we can accomplish during our conference is directly impacted by the amount of funds we raise throughout the year. As a result, it is our privilege to recognize the following sponsors, both financial and in-kind. Without their help, this conference would not be possible.

Thinkerer Studios
AvaCon Inc.
Virtual Ability, Inc.
Agile Dimensions
Builders Brewery
University of Idaho
University of Washington Alumni
Whole Brain Health
Rockcliffe University Consortium

VWBPE 2015 Announces Its Featured Speakers

Ebbe Altberg the CEO of Linden Lab, opens the conference on Wednesday, March 18, and looks forward to speaking about the the relationship between Linden Lab and educators: a fitting start to a conference that features some of the greatest work in virtual worlds by educators.

On Thursday, Pamela Broviak shows us how virtual spaces can be leveraged to promote sustainable environments in the field of civil engineering.

Also on Thursday, our crossroads take us to AvaCon Grid, where Gord Holden will impart his bright optimism for K-12 education by helping to allay trepidations concerning virtual worlds and will share his ideas on how to meet exciting goals set forth by experiential learning.

Our journey returns to Second Life on Friday, when our day begins with Jeroen Frans’ sharing of some impressive projects that both engage and motivate learners.

Continuing on Friday, the inimitable Sensuous Maximus will provide us with her keen observations on virtual teaching and essential skill-sets fundamental to being epic.

Saturday’s lineup continues with speakers who bring with them the impact of years in virtual worlds. Our day begins with Susan Toth-Cohen, who will share her life-changing work of applying virtual worlds in her graduate program for occupational therapy.

Midday Saturday finds us with John Fillwalk who will engage the participant in an interdisciplinary view of simulation and virtualization that is the product of years of work across several platforms.

Finally, we close with Jay Jay Jegathesan, who will speak on the large span of influence over the arts, research, machinima, teaching, and architecture that UWA has become well-known for promoting, with a sensibility toward varied audiences and communities.

Our many presentations, workshops and activities will allow for ample opportunities to network with other luminaries in the field of education in virtual worlds across the globe.

VWBPE invites you to this exciting crossroads, where we will advance the possibilities and promise of virtual worlds to impact on life and profession alike. Get to know our featured speakers here.

VWBPE 2015 Thinkerer Award Nomination Extended until March 8

The Thinkerer Award is presented to an individual whose deeds and actions have shown consistent selfless service towards the promotion of learning, community, and educational practices, and who exemplifies the spirit of cooperative development within immersive environments.

In 2014, the first annual Thinkerer Award was presented to Selby Evans (Thinkerer Melville) for whom the award is named. We welcome nominations of this year’s outstanding candidates for singularly unique honour. The deadline to enter your nominations is March 1st.

More information: Submit Your Nomination for the VWBPE 2015 Thinkerer Award

Advancing Innovation through Sponsorship

Best Practices in Education are at the forefront of a technically savvy revolution that is creating inspiring innovation in the classroom. Be a part of these exciting trends by helping support a conference for educators who use leading edge tools and techniques in the classroom. The VWBPE conference reaches over 3000 educators from around the world who are advancing these educational techniques.

Do you have an organization that you would like to promote? VWBPE is internationally renowned and becoming a sponsor of the conference is a wonderful opportunity to get your organization’s name in front of all of our attendees. Whether you submit a proposal or become a sponsor, you know that you will be in distinguished company at the crossroads of education.

Your donation will be used to help us create open-sourced, peer-reviewed archives which extend well beyond the 3-4 days of the conference, as well as permit teachers and educators to learn how to work with changing technologies in the classroom.

In addition, your brand recognition will expand well beyond a simple 4 day conference given that it will be part of the public record and accessible through the US Library and Archives. You can view past conference proceedings at the Journal of Virtual Studies as well as last year’s VWBPE 2014 videos at AviewTV.

This year, VWBPE will be holding the conference in multiple virtual world locations for the 3rd year in a row. While Second Life’s virtual environment will still be hosting the main venues, other locations may include OpenSim and other “non-traditional” virtual world environments which are capable of supporting presentations, discussion forums, demonstrations, and hands-on workshops.

Watch this website for updates and follow us on our social media platforms including Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.