Professional experience (or practicum) is problematic within teacher education courses because preparation for, and the quality of, placements can be inconsistant. Pre-service teachers can commence their first placement without some of the requisite skills and off-campus pre-service teachers do not always have opportunities to practise any skills at all pre-placement. VirtualPREX is an innovative approach to professional experience preparation, providing opportunities for practice in a virtual world such as second life. In this chapter the authors outline the rationale for this innovation and then report on the data from the pilot trials of the VirtualPREX role plays where pre-service teachers role-played the teacher and students in second life virtual classroom. The chapter concludes with a discussion of the next steps in the project.
|Title of host publication||Virtual worlds for online learning|
|Subtitle of host publication||Cases and applications|
|Editors||Belinda Tynan, Sue Gregory, Barney Dalgarno, Mark J. W. Lee|
|Place of Publication||New York|
|Publisher||Nova Science Publishers|
|Number of pages||22|
|Publication status||Published - 2015|
|Name||Education in a Competitive and Globalization World|
Gregory, S., Masters, Y., Dalgarno, B., Reiners, T., & Knox, V. (2015). VirtualPREX: Providing virtual professional experience for pre-service teachers. In B. Tynan, S. Gregory, B. Dalgarno, & M. J. W. Lee (Eds.), Virtual worlds for online learning: Cases and applications (1st ed., pp. 3-24). (Education in a Competitive and Globalization World). Nova Science Publishers.