Archive for the ‘2012 class summaries’ Category


Class 3: Personal branding

October 26, 2012


The class started with each participant giving his/her elevator pitch. Most were able to deliver using voice, others texted their pitches which were then read out by Locks. Generally all did a good job and for us, there is a better sense of knowing who is behind the avatar which is the point of the exercise.

The discussion then focused for a while on the creation of a personal brand or online identity and why this is important. The class identified reasons such as being in control of your own reputation, establishing yourself as a trustworthy brand or person for professional purposes, amongst others, as reasons why they would be looking at creation of an identity. We briefly looked at the people behind the blogs visited during the last weekly activity and tried to determine what impression we got from their blogs … if we got a good sense of who they were and what they were about … why we should be interested in what they had to say and if we could trust them.

The issue of how to present yourself was also raised and this led into a discussion of whether, and indeed how, to keep professional and personal separate in your online identities and also, why you might want to do that.

Coming back to identity within  SL, this starts with the naming of our avatars, designing the physical shape, selecting clothing and accessories and so on. Tae explained the context from which the Acuppa Tae name and avatar emerged and some of the issues about maintaining an alternative personal identity, explaining that the real life John O’Connor was beginning to replace the SL identity of Tae – particularly in twitter. The concept of managing this persona, or personal brand, in a professional manner was considered leading to discussion around the development of online networks using tools like twitter and Facebook.

We ended the week’s discussion by briefly going beyond the self (personal identity) and  looking at how online relationships (professional and personal) are established and maintained, the importance of trust and the need for appropriate conventions and rules of behaviour to support online communities. This will be continued next week.

Finally, Tae drew everyone’s attention to page 6 in the right hand column describing how the module will be assessed, the schedule and criteria. It is very important to understand this fully. If you have any questions post them here, in twitter or Facebook or ask at the next class.

All participants were given their L$300 stipend last week.


  1. Go outside your established community/group (eg, this class group) in SL and make contact with at least two people relevant to your interests (artist, teacher, selling online, etc). Write a post on your blog explaining the relevance of these new contacts you have made, what you discussed and how to met and/or approached them.
  2. Discuss with your group and choose a social network to create  profiles for your avatar  and link your blog to this profile. Use this profile to connect with others in your community as appropriate to your group project.
  3. Blog post: Reflect on why you and your group chose the social network platform you have chosen to use.


Class 2: Communicating…Writing 101

October 18, 2012


We discussed writing – the types used and the conventions around them.
Main points:

  • Forms of writing we use include Narrative, Descriptive, Reflective, Critical,
  • Sourcing information – where to look- make sure sources are reliable and credible (judging sources)
  • Referencing – why and How (Chicago style): Give credit when due!
  • Writing to topic: don’t go off point. Use your heading as an anchor

Mostly, the aim this module is to enable you to become accountable and confident in your writing.
The following three links give some more detailed information about academic writing.

DIT’s Study & IT Skills Survival Guide for Academic Writing
Purdue Online Writing Lab page on Academic Writing

Here is a guide to the Chicago referencing style

We also talked about how your work for this module will be assessed. You need to write at least one post to your blog each week. Your blogs will be assessed at certain milestones so ensure they are up to date always. We assess for quality in writing, your writing should go beyond narration and description to be also reflective and critical.
The introduction to the group project deserves a blog post of it’s own!


  1. Bearing in mind what you learned today, have a look at, compare the writing style with your own blog.
    Write a new blog entry, this time address the module objectives from your perspective. Justify why they are important to you, while applying the conventions of academic writing given in the class. This will be a mix of descriptive/information, critical/reflective writing.
  2. Visit the following blogs to see a selection of different ‘voices’:, ,
    Think about how you would identify these blog authors…what impression of the person behind the blog do you get?
  3. Read: and relate it to what the blogs you have just looked at are doing.
    Now think about yourself (ie, your avatar). Who are you? What is your online identity?
  4. Prepare a 30 second ‘elevator pitch’ about yourself and the identity you want to portray online. (ie, who you are and what you are about).

Class 1: Rules of engagement

October 14, 2012


Participants were introduced to Acuppa Tae and Locks Aichi, the module leaders, and Sitearm Madonna and Elfay Pinkdot, guest lecturers on the module. Tae explained that for the first half of the module classes would be based on reading material to be given in advance. Participants will need to study this to inform their contribution to discussion in the class. Tae also asked participants to familiarise themselves with the learning outcomes of the module described on page 3 in the right hand column of this blog.


  1. Complete your SL profile.
  2. Set up your blog using, or any other blogging tool.
  3. Complete the About Me section on your blog by writing about your expectations for this module – what you hope to get out of it, what you think you might contribute, etc, referring to the learning outcomes for the module.
  4. Find and explore three locations in SL.
  5. Post an entry to your blog describing the locations you visited.
  6. Set up a twitter account in your SL avatar’s name (or your real life name), if you don’t already have one and post a link to your blog. Use #iole12 to identify your twitter posts. Follow @johnoconnorDIT, @acuppatae, @iclaudiad, and each other.

Teaching in Virtual worlds…

May 25, 2012

Our regular module “Is one life enough” has just ended andrather thanstaying quiet all summer, we are now running a module on Teaching in Virtual worlds.
We will be using this space to document the path of this module as well.

Last night, Thursday the 24th o fMay , we had the second session of our new module: Teaching in Virtual worlds.
The module is being offered to teaching and training staff and run at 8pm GMT on thursdays and will hold for 7weeks….5wereks more.
Last night’s class was on virtual environments in general, how they function, conventions governing behaviours, communities, etc.
Here a snapshot of the discussion group sitting around the table. we were missing two participants.


Videos from Finale

May 25, 2012

Here are the videos all by the students:




FINALE…for the set of 2011

May 25, 2012

After weeks of preparation, the students pulled togther all they had learned in their final projects in which they had to work in groups.  They had to  navigate the challenges of working in a virtual team to create an artefact which represented the theme “Virtuality”

Guest judeges were Sitearm Madonna and Lisa Elfay. We also had 2 special guests Jaynine Scarborough who had been of immense support to the students from when we visited her “thousand rooms” on a field trip

As they say a picture is more than a thousand words and video…..

*Pictures are courtesy of Sitearm Madonna


Class 7: Group working dynamics

March 26, 2012

Given that students have now been split into groups to work on their ideas for end of term showcase, we spend this session discussing the dynamics of group working particularly in an online context.

Our guests from the MSc in Applied elearning made it to this week’s  class and also took part in the conversation. Second-life life as a bit laggy today but it didn’t stop the class from having a good conversation around the topic.

It was concluded that working collaboratively online could be successful if managed right. To manage it right, key things such as communication, clarification of agreements and goals, using appropriate tools which can track work such as Google docs or wikis(pbworks) were all deemed as important. It was also determined that a project coordinator was required and not so much to lead but more to ensure things stayed on track . The students also felt that is was important to be able to “contain” both people who had a tendency to dominate and those who had a tendency to hide behind others.

All in all, we hope to see evidence of good teamwork in students end of term presentations!

Next week’s class will hold on the Friday instead of the Thursday and students will be presenting what they propose to do for the showcase and also explain how it meets the module objectives from their perspective.

On the 19th of April, students will hear from a graduate of this module: Sitearm Madonna  on how to tighten their work as a group and he will also suggest some approaches and tools to consider.  Apart from being a graduate of this module, Site works online on various SL projects.


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