Learning competencies used in the U.S. Navy's Virtual Schoolhouse learning environment
Bower, Jennifer M.
Richmond, Jonathan R.
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This study was initiated to identify and illustrate with a visual model the key student learning competencies that most fundamentally contribute to a student's ability to achieve desired learning outcomes in a synchronous, dispersed virtual learning environment. We answered the following research questions: (1) which learning competencies can best be leveraged to support learning in a synchronous virtual-learning environment? (2) how can relevant learning competencies be transmitted to students during learning events? (3) which, if any, individual-level cognitive factors can be extracted during the pre-training phase that positively influence students' learning processes? and (4) which learning competencies can be added to existing models on learning in virtual environments? By surveying students participating in the U.S. Navy's Virtual Schoolhouse, we were able to attain and analyze quantitative data. We discovered that virtual world efficacy is a meta-competency composed of autonomous learning, multiple level operation, and collaborative adaptability. Our research findings suggest that a student's capability to understand and learn in the virtual world is a broad competency and is a significant predictor of his/her success in the virtual environment. Based on our findings, we recommend a familiarity period to allow students to develop these competencies prior to their participation in virtual learning.
Approved for public release; distribution is unlimitedReissued 13 Feb 2017 with change to degree.
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