Multiple agencies throughout the federal government are exploring ways to further their mission through the use of virtual worlds. Supporting continuity of operations, developing synchronous and asynchronous training scenarios, and collaborating both within and across agencies are all promising areas for this technology. Key features of virtual worlds include:
- Promotes higher engagement through personalization and a sense of presence
- Provides a platform for shared problem solving, collaboration, and access to experts
- Provides an extended learning environment for designing and participating in training
While virtual worlds have been used for social and business collaboration for years, skill-building and training are relatively new. Successful programs must leverage the unique features of virtual worlds in the design of scenarios and activities that would be difficult to do in other learning environments. Virtual worlds lend themselves well to performance-based assessments in which individual competencies can be evaluated through simulated on-the-job scenarios. The ability to role-play, create re-enactments, and connect with others to accomplish tasks are just some of the options available to instructional and experience designers to take advantage of this platform. Virtual worlds hold a great deal of promise for collaboration, training, and visualization within the federal government. There are numerous prototype projects currently underway exploring the many ways to use this technology in the day-to-day business of government.
We are working actively on many exciting areas, including:
- vGov – the first secure virtual world platform available to all federal agencies
- Integrating training in virtual worlds with learning management systems using SCORM
- Browser-based access avoiding the need for proprietary plug-ins and client download
- Scenario development tools that are independent of a specific virtual world platform allowing for portability of your learning content
To learn more about Carney’s virtual environments capabilities, see Virtual Environment Case Study – Center for Development of Security Excellence (CDSE).