Teaching and Learning in Virtual Environments
Archives, Museums, and Libraries
by Patricia C. Franks, Lori A. Bell, and Rhonda B. Trueman, Editors
September 2016, 246pp, 6 1/8x9 1/4
1 volume, Libraries Unlimited

Paperback: 978-1-4408-4174-3
$70, £54, 61€, A96
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-4175-0
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

Engage audiences and students outside of traditional classrooms or exhibit spaces using the most recent developments in immersive learning.

Useful to school librarians, teachers, and faculty, this book explains the range of possibilities for creating immersive learning experiences through the use of virtual worlds, virtual simulations, virtual collections, exhibits by libraries and museums, and archives.

There is a renaissance occurring in education with immersive learning via virtual applications and environments, even at the elementary school level. This widespread new movement is happening over more platforms than before—Second Life, Open Sim, Unity3D, Curio, and others. Teaching and Learning in Virtual Environments: Archives, Museums, and Libraries presents readers with the scope of possibilities for education in virtual environments today. Written from the perspective of the practitioner, it provides a wealth of teaching tips for virtual environments and for combining virtual environments with other emerging technologies for libraries and education.

Chapters describe how recent developments in technology have made web-based virtual worlds more accessible for teaching and learning and discuss the unique benefits and affordances of educating in virtual environments as well as their applications to different subjects. The teaching applications cover the primary and secondary school levels, higher education and graduate-level environments, and even beyond formal education into building immersive “information experiences” for professional training applications, library users, and the general public. The text provides an up-to-date overview for educators, academic and public librarians, and archives and museum staff on recent developments with immersive learning; presents innovative programs and teaching ideas; covers administrative issues; and addresses the student’s perspective as well.


  • Explains how using virtual worlds in teaching and outreach can better motivate, engage, and reach more students with diverse learning styles than traditional text-based methods
  • Updated with information on the latest technology and newest library applications
  • Enables readers to make more informed decisions about which latest virtual reality platforms to use
Patricia C. Franks, PhD, is program coordinator for the Master's Degree in Archives and Records Administration at the School of Information at San Jose State University. Her research interests lie in archives, records management, and emerging technologies. She has presented at numerous conferences on a variety of topics, including social media, information governance, and virtual internships. Her work in virtual worlds has resulted in the creation of the Virtual Center for Archives and Records Administration (VCARA) on iSchool Island. Her published work includes the book Records and Information Management.

Lori A. Bell has been very active in virtual worlds, especially Second Life, since 2006 when she worked at Alliance Library System. She worked on many virtual library projects, including Renaissance Island, the Alliance Second Life Library, the building of HealthInfo Island, and a number of other educational projects through 2010. Teaching actively in Second Life since fall 2013 (on several topics, including Advanced Immersive Learning), she is an adjunct lecturer with San Jose State School of Information and the University of Hawaii Graduate School of Library and Information Science. She is coeditor of the book Virtual Worlds, Real Libraries: Librarians and Educators in Second Life and Other Multi-User Virtual Environments.

Rhonda B. Trueman is acquisitions and access services librarian at Northwest Florida State College. She has been actively involved in libraries in Second Life since 2006 and was a manager of the Alliance Second Life Library until 2010, when it became the Community Virtual Library. Trueman has written a number of articles and spoken at many events on the topic of virtual worlds and libraries. She is coeditor of the book Virtual Worlds, Real Libraries: Librarians and Educators in Second Life and Other Multi-User Virtual Environments.


"Teaching and Learning in Virtual Environments is recommended for educators unfamiliar with virtual worlds but interested in expanding their skill set. . . . [O]verall theme and ideas are valuable."—Research in Online Literacy Education, January 29, 2018
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