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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

A Phenomenological Study: Understanding the Experiences of Students with Emotional and Behavioral Disorder (EBD) in the Use of Virtual Reality (VR) Environments
by Sutton, Dawn R., Ed.D., Wilkes University, 2015, 158; 3734045
Abstract (Summary)

There is very little research about the use of virtual reality (VR) technology within special education environments, in particular Emotional and Behavioral Disorder (EBD) classrooms. The purpose of this phenomenological study was to understand the experiences of students with EBD as they use a VR learning platform as their primary learning environment. The study was focused on four participants as they told their stories about their experience with the virtual learning world of Quest Atlantis. Three main themes related to the participants’ experiences emerged: emergence of self-confidence; play and learning within a virtual learning environment; and fostering positive social interactions. Their experiences within the QA environment showed how they found learning to be a “fun” and meaningful process, which was much different from their experiences in non-virtual learning environments. For these participants, this medium helped them to begin to develop a greater sense of self-confidence, which led to more self-control and management of their lives. In addition, they had begun to learn how to increase their understanding of working in collaborative learning environments, a much-needed skill for the years to come. The benefits of this study may help educators add to their understanding of how the use of VR can help to create a positive learning environment for a group of students with EBD that tend to be in the highly restrictive learning setting.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Mao, Jin Joy
Commitee: Burnside, Dana, Chiavacci, James P., Garzella, Michael, Gould, John M.
School: Wilkes University
Department: Educational Leadership
School Location: United States -- Pennsylvania
Source: DAI-A 77/03(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Special education, Educational technology, Curriculum development
Keywords: Constructivism, Emotional behavioral disorder, Situated cognition, Social constructivim, Transformational play, Virtual reality/virtual environment
Publication Number: 3734045
ISBN: 978-1-339-22512-8
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