E-learning through Virtual Reality Applications: The Case of Career Counseling

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Kostopoulos, Konstantinos Panagiotis
Giannopoulos, Konstantinos
Mystakidis, Stylianos
Chronopoulou, Kiriaki
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Common Ground Research Networks
Abstract
VR can be defined as a three-dimensional space that provides a strong degree of interaction with the user, including real-time simulation and interactions through multiple channelssenses. It is not just a reproduction of conventional reality, but creates synthetic realities without precedent. It has been used in various fields, e.g. education, medicine, architecture, assistance to persons with disabilities, etc. VR leads to the development of new forms of counseling, e.g. via asynchronous learning platform, videoconferencing, social networking, etc. By using the three-dimensional virtual immersive learning environments of “Open Workshop on Information Literacy” of Patras’ University Library, we organized and conducted three educational workshops about career consulting with 50 participants. The Open Workshop is an open and free blended learning initiative for providing flexible training services on academic & professional development to the university’s academic community and beyond. In this paper, the results through practice of such an initiative are described, i.e. the prerequisites for its success, its capabilities/restrictions, the participants (and potential) and the way they participated, users’ feedback (evaluation and outcomes) and the possibilities/limitations of Virtual Reality (VR) applications in Career Counseling and especially in providing educational and vocational information through already implemented actions.
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Keywords
E-learning, Virtual worlds, Distance learning, Distance education, Open education, Massive Open Online Courses, Career counseling, Virtual immersive environments, Virtual environments, Tri-dimensional environments, Collaborative spaces, Information literacy
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