A Hybrid Model of Experiential Learning within the Social Virtual World of Second Life





Desktop virtual world, virtual learning environment, hybrid TAM/TML model


This study examined how multi-user virtual worlds can enhance learning, by extending and refining a prior VR-based model to include two new constructs: virtual identity, and social constructivism. The fit of the model was analyzed using structural equation modeling (SEM), and the results supported both the extension and the hypothesized refined model. Findings: VR features were found to indirectly impact on the learning outcomes, mediated by the perception of usability and the learning experience. The learning experience was measured by seven individual psychological factors: presence, virtual identity, motivation, cognitive benefits, agentic learning, social constructivism, and reflective thinking. These factors mediated the learning outcomes, measured by the perception of learning effectiveness and satisfaction, and may have a range of implications for the instructional design of learning activities using the virtual world. This research blends a technology acceptance model with the technology-mediated learning perspective to advance the development of a hybrid theoretical framework as a basis for future research into enhanced learning within a social virtual world.

Author Biography

K. Brant Knutzen, University of Hong Kong

Brant has an extensive background in the professional development of teachers, and he has been doing research on the use of social virtual worlds for education since 2008.


Additional Files





Peer Reviewed Research Papers