The Designing Process Of Avatars and Clothes In 3D Virtual Learning Settings: “Mathlife” Case


ATALAY H., COŞTU S., ARSLAN S., BARAN B., YILDIZ A., CESUR B., ...More

World Conference on Science and Mathematics Education, Antalya, Turkey, 13 - 15 November 2014, pp.1

  • Publication Type: Conference Paper / Summary Text
  • City: Antalya
  • Country: Turkey
  • Page Numbers: pp.1

Abstract

The internet has become a crucial platform for the maintenance of social relationships. In parallel with the development of the internet technology, currently, there are new communication methods and channels which allow human to share ideas and experience independent of time and space; some of them are Twitter, Facebook and Second-life online services, among many of others in the era of social software.  Today, the most popular is the second life or other similar 3d virtual world environments. These three dimensional tools promise the possibility of a virtual environment that provides better understanding for students through its experiences and assists as the similar of the real world. For many years, it has been significantly released that 3d virtual world is a learning environment which has a great potential of making human interaction better as well as improving informal learning. In the 3d virtual world, there is a particular way of interaction channel which maybe united verbal chatting (viz, instant mail) and non-verbal communicatıon (viz, the clothes of avatars and their movements have their own semiotics).  In addition, researches claim that students, who have a real world mirror avatar (represented), feel more comfortable and belonging to more social environments. Therefore, this study has provided real world mirror avatars and clothes. In this sense, avatars and clothes in the Mathlife virtual spaces have been designed based on design based process. Initially the design principles and then the design stages have cyclically been considered. For this study, in the first cycle,   20 students (10 male and 10 female) and 7 teachers (3 maths and 4 class) and in the second cycle, 15 students (7 male and 8 female) and 7 teachers (3 maths and 4 class) have been interviewed. The introduction presentations of the avatars and the clothes were also conducted prior to the Mathlife interviews. 

Before actually designing all 3d avatars (5 female and 5 male), the study of 2d sketch designing was completed. These sketches were shown to students to take their preferences’ list about the avatars. In the first cycle interviews, students proposed at removing freckles and glasses of the avatars’ faces and modifying hair colours. Based on this proposal, it was decided that 2 male and 2 female avatars have been modified. Teachers indicated that students have a particular interest of football player; therefore, the names of the avatars have been retitled from famous players as Messi and Ronalda. So it was also become a necessity to design additional avatar (1 football player). Thus, totally 11, 3d avatars have been designed. In the second cycle interviews, 75% male students have preferred to have the football player avatar but to have different uniforms; thereby new uniforms have been designed based on students’ comments. On the other hand, most of female students have suggested redesigning their avatars. Due to this partial failure, in particular deciding 3d female avatar, all female avatars has had to be totally modified.  

Before actually designing all 3d avatars (5 female and 5 male), the study of 2d sketch designing was completed. These sketches were shown to students to take their preferences’ list about the avatars. In the first cycle interviews, students proposed at removing freckles and glasses of the avatars’ faces and modifying hair colours. Based on this proposal, it was decided that 2 male and 2 female avatars have been modified. Teachers indicated that students have a particular interest of football player; therefore, the names of the avatars have been retitled from famous players as Messi and Ronalda. So it was also become a necessity to design additional avatar (1 football player). Thus, totally 11, 3d avatars have been designed. In the second cycle interviews, 75% male students have preferred to have the football player avatar but to have different uniforms; thereby new uniforms have been designed based on students’ comments. On the other hand, most of female students have suggested redesigning their avatars. Due to this partial failure, in particular deciding 3d female avatar, all female avatars has had to be totally modified.