I enjoyed the workshop on Second Life – it was really interesting to see how Imperial is using it as a learning tool. I can see how you can use it to give a more realistic experience of a hospital than a questionnaire would be – they’d both test the student’s understanding, but a more visual experience might help people remember better.
I had fun creating my avatar – who knew virtual hair could be just as unruly as the real thing? There were some interesting points raised in discussion once a few people had turned up at the SL version of Imperial, as to how virtual worlds evolve and what they’re useful for.
I don’t think that SL has much to offer libraries at the moment. I think it’s at its best when allowing people to interact with each other. There might be something we could do with linking e-books to a book in SL, but I don’t really think the technology is there yet – the graphics are too clunky and at the moment it’s going to be far quicker to just go to the website. I also don’t think that students would necessarily expect to be able to go to the library in SL, unless Imperial vastly increases the virtual campus.