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VIRTUAL SCENARIOS IN AN IMMERSIVE LEARNING ENVIRONMENT TO DEVELOP SPEAKING SKILLS IN EFL

M. Mendez

EAN University (COLOMBIA)
This research has several stages in which the first one, an analysis of the related information is done in order to support the virtual scenarios design. In the second stage, the design of the virtual reality scenarios is done to be implemented in a third stage, and finally the evaluation of the results regarding the learning experience. The aim of the Project is to design 2 scenarios for virtual reality as an immersive leaning strategy in an e-learning program on Modern languages , in this case for English as a foreign language. Along with this study, some other objectives were set in order to accomplish the main goal: To analyze information regarding the theoretical framework of the virtual reality and immersive learning:; to identify virtual tools currently being in use in national and international institutions for the teaching of English as a foreign language , and to identify useful and appropriate virtual tools to design the virtual scenarios for the immersive learning experience to develop speaking skills in e-learning Modern Languages students .In a later stage, the impact of this immersive learning experience will be evaluated according to the learners performance level assessed in the language course.
Using technology is a recent trend in higher education institutions and even more when they look for expanding educational offerings through distance and virtual programs. The virtual approach to the educational area is found in the combination of media and in the knowledge apprehension in an autonomous and personalized basis. In other words, it is given in the direct and constructive interaction of the individual who learns through the wide category of media containing information. This information is set in advance but its meaning is given by the individual´s unique and particular interpretation ability and by the media facilities based in creative interaction, imagination, and immersion.
This is why 3D environments adding social networking applications and collaborative work on line tools are the future e-learning environments as they can reconfigure university education for the “presentiality sense”.