Media Grid News

The New Media Consortium (NMC) joins Immersive Education initiative to advance virtual learning

 

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - June 07, 2007 - During the NMC Summer Conference today the New Media Consortium (NMC) announced that it has joined the Media Grid’s Immersive Education initiative to participate in the development of best practices and standards for virtual learning and game-based learning platforms. NMC is an international consortium of over 250 learning-focused organizations dedicated to the exploration and use of new media and new technologies. NMC member institutions are found in almost every state in the United States, across Canada, and in Europe, Asia and Australia. Among the consortium’s membership are an elite list of the most highly regarded colleges and universities in the world, innovative museums, research centers, foundations, and forward-thinking companies. The consortium’s collective wealth of experience in building virtual learning environments in Second Life will be applied directly to the Immersive Education initiative.

Earlier this week the Immersive Education initiative was launched with an open call to educators, students, and professionals who have experience using virtual learning environments and video game technologies (such as Second Life, Croquet, Extensible 3D [X3D], Panda3D, Quake, Unreal, Torque Game Engine, and so forth). Individuals and organizations can visit ImmersiveEducation.org to select the next-generation Immersive Education platform, contribute to best practices, and establish international standards for virtual learning environments and game-based learning platforms.

Immersive Education is an award-winning learning platform that combines interactive 3D graphics, commercial game and simulation technology, virtual reality, voice chat (Voice over IP/VoIP), Web cameras (webcams) and rich digital media with collaborative online course environments and classrooms. Immersive Education gives participants a sense of "being there" even when attending a class or training session in person isn't possible, practical, or desirable, which in turn provides educators and students with the ability to connect and communicate in a way that greatly enhances the learning experience. Originally available only to university students, the next generation of Immersive Education is focused on a broad spectrum of academic and non-academic users (higher education, K-12 [kindergarten through high school], and corporate training). Unlike traditional computer-based learning systems, Immersive Education is designed to immerse and engage students in the same way that today's best video games grab and keep the attention of players. Immersive Education supports self-directed learning as well as collaborative group-based learning environments that can be delivered over the Internet or using fixed-media such as CD-ROM and DVD. Shorter mini-games and interactive lessons can be injected into larger bodies of course material to further heighten and enrich the Immersive Education experience.

Since 2004 students at Boston College have had the opportunity to participate in Immersive Education, which has the potential to fundamentally reshape education and corporate training by providing on-demand learning and simulation technology that can engage and instruct at a level far beyond that of the typical in-person or online course. Following an award-winning 2 year pilot at Boston College, Immersive Education is now being made available as a community resource for the benefit of educators, students, and researchers. Visit ImmersiveEducation.org for additional information and details on how to participate.

 

About the New Media Consortium
The New Media Consortium (NMC) is an international 501(c)3 not-for-profit consortium of over 250 learning-focused organizations dedicated to the exploration and use of new media and new technologies. NMC member institutions are found in almost every state in the United States, across Canada, and in Europe, Asia and Australia. Among the membership are an elite list of the most highly regarded colleges and universities in the world, as well as a growing list of innovative museums, research centers, foundations, and forward-thinking companies. The consortium serves as a catalyst for the development of new applications of technology to support learning and creative expression, and sponsors programs and activities designed to stimulate innovation, encourage collaboration, and recognize excellence among its member institutions. Through its many projects, its comprehensive website, and its series of international conferences, the NMC stimulates dialog and understanding through the exploration of promising ideas, technologies, and applications. As a central part of its mission, the NMC encourages and supports innovation in the pursuit of effective collaboration, especially in the activities and projects in which it plays a leadership role. For more information on the NMC, visit www.nmc.org.

 

About the Media Grid
The Media Grid is a public utility for digital media. Based on new and emerging distributed computational grid technologies, the Media Grid builds upon existing Internet and Web standards to create a unique network optimized for digital media delivery, storage, and processing. As an on-demand public computing utility, a range of software programs and Web sites can use the Media Grid for delivery and storage of rich media content, media processing, and computing power. The Media Grid is an open and extensible platform that enables a wide range of applications not possible with the traditional Internet alone, including: Massive Media on Demand (MMoD); Interactive digital cinema on demand; Immersive Education and distance learning; Truly immersive multiplayer games and Virtual Reality (VR); Hollywood movie and film rendering, special effects, and composition; Real-time rendering of high resolution graphics; Real-time visualization of complex weather patterns; Real-time protein modeling and drug design; Telepresence, telemedicine, and telesurgery; Vehicle and aircraft design and simulation; Visualization of scientific and medical data.

The Grid Institute leads the design and development of the global Media Grid through the MediaGrid.org open standards organization in collaboration with industry, academia, and governments from around the world.

To learn more about the Media Grid and New Media Consortium visit MediaGrid.org and www.nmc.org