Date of Award
Master of Science
Education, Leadership and Public Service
Carolyn Lowe PhD
Judith Puncochar PhD
Mitchell Klett PhD
This qualitative study's purpose was to integrate virtual classroom assignments with traditional classroom activities. The integration of these virtual classroom assignments were used to assess the benefits of technology integration in a science classroom. Thirteen fifth and sixth grade students learned about the evolution and traits of organisms in accordance to the State of Michigan Grade Level Content Expectations. This unit followed a unit on animal systems.
Students were given a pretest and posttest (in concept map form and unit test in essay form). Objectives were taught using a combination of lecture, discussion, and in class activities. The unit also contained three virtual world activities. Following each virtual world activity, students were given a questionnaire to give feedback regarding the retention of subject matter and presentation of material.
The virtual world activities enhanced the animal systems unit. Students were able to learn the objectives and then extend their knowledge through interactive simulations and presenting their creations. Students also greatly benefitted from the social aspect of Biome. Students were able to understand big picture ideas and make real world connections through social expression, artistic expression and the sharing of their ideas.
Pihlainen, Amy Eileen, "USING A VIRTUAL WORLD FOR SCIENCE INSTRUCTION WITH FIFTH AND SIXTH GRADE STUDENTS" (2016). All NMU Master's Theses. 88.