Delivering Innovative Results
Rapid advances in internet technologies have opened gateways for specialized educational opportunities. Many different types of web-based content can be utilized to help train Combat Lifesavers including single player and multiplayer serious games, mobile applications, web-based courseware, social networks and online communities of practice. Although these web-based technologies have helped to augment and enhance traditional instruction, these do not consider the fact that each individual can learn differently based on their preferences, motivations, and skill level. The Virtual Medical Simulation Training Center (VMSTC) focuses on combining different types of existing instructional content with varying instructional strategies to tailor the delivery of training content to each individual learner.
The Virtual Medical Simulation Training Center (VMSTC) is contained within US Nexus, a 3D, immersive, avatar-based Virtual World platform developed through cooperation from multiple government agencies to improve and augment their existing instructional technologies and capabilities. This collaboration allows individuals and groups to meet online for a variety of class activities, including lectures, discussions, case studies, projects, papers, exams, study groups and labs. These 3D Communities supplement traditional training methods by providing contextual 3D environments where Warfighters can work together to practice and understand the concepts that are being taught.
The VMSTC provides an instructorless, “adaptive learning” capability that delivers tailored learning content to each student based on learning styles, student motivation, and skill levels. After logging into the VMSTC, students proceed into a registration area of a virtual school that houses classrooms, an auditorium, a lane training area, and courtyard for informal learning experiences. The student registers at a VMSTC by taking a learning style and skills assessment that determines the most suitable learning content, such as didactic, video, or interactive gaming content. As a student progresses through content, skills assessments determine whether or not they can continue to progress through the levels of the curriculum. Additionally, the assessment determines whether or not the content tailored to meet the student’s needs should be adapted in response to their performance. This “tailoring” continues during the students’ progression through the content, which can occur 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, and at their own pace. The students also have access to other students that are also in world at the VMSTC for informal learning opportunities and collaboration.