Yifei Wang

YIFEI WANG is currently working as a postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Curriculum and Pedagogy at the University of British Columbia. She holds a Ph.D degree in curriculum studies with a research focus on learning and technology.

Her Ph.D research explored whether knowledge gained through a 3D virtual world can be transferred into real life skills. It presents how the combination of OpenSimulator and design-based research inform the design of VILLAGE, virtual immersive language learning and gaming environment. Data are collected through design-based research methodological framework, focusing on a detailed design phase of the two learning artifacts – chat bot and time machine. Results indicate that an important role of virtual worlds is their ability to fully embody learners in places, in terms of immersion and presence. These properties are enhanced in VILLAGE by the chat bot and time machine. Hence, best design practices should address how immersion and presence can be integrated into affordances of virtual worlds.

Her study is part of a larger project, How We Learn (Media and Technology across the Lifespan) (http://blogs.ubc.ca/howwelearn), funded through various agencies, including the Social Sciences and Research Council of Canada (SSHRC). She has been fortunate to continue working with colleagues and students on the HWL project as a Postdoctoral Researcher.

Her postdoctoral research explores learning with technology using design-based research methods and the revised desgin-based research model. In particular, she is interested in scenario-based learning in 3D virtual worlds to enhance learning and the cognitive demands of moving in and out of these spaces. Her Postdoctoral research plan also includes exploring and testing some of the most pressing questions of 3D virtual worlds, including the ‘virtual now-real later’ nexus of cyber bullying. Her future research plans will be built upon her current research trajectory, focusing on the production of learning theories and design principles of pedagogical innovations.