I blame Sarah Robbins. Two years ago at AERA in Chicago, she posted a call on the SLED listserv to show up for pizza to meet-n-greet other Second Lifers. I not only got to meet Sarah, but several other folks with whom I’ve developed lasting relationships. One of those individuals was Mary Herring, current President of AECT, who went on to start the AECT in Second Life group. Two other folks included Jeremy Kemp and Jonathon Richter. As the three of us lingered over a late-night chat, we brainstormed ways to create a venue for virtual world researchers to share their work, and voila! the Applied Research in Virtual Environments for Learning Special Interest Group (ARVEL SIG) was born.
With many thanks to our original 30 founding members, and our current membership of over 70 virtual world educational researchers, we are pleased to announce our first year offering eight sessions, roundtables, and interactive symposiums representing the work of over 65 researchers at this year’s annual meeting of AERA in San Diego. Our sessions run April 13-16, and we look forward to your participation as we continue to grow and evolve as a SIG!
Be sure to join us on Tuesday night for our business meeting, socializing, and most importantly, to hear our keynote speaker, Yasmin Kafai, discuss her work studying tweens in virtual worlds.