We are excited to announce Ty Hollett as a 2016-17 TLT Fellow in the area of learning spaces. As TLT works with other groups from around the university on the creation and implementation of new, physical learning spaces, Ty’s project involves the use of virtual reality technology as a co-design space, where various groups of people can come together and work to virtually design learning spaces that cater to many different needs. Ty’s research focuses on learning, specifically how learning happens across space and time. With an interest in embodied learning, Tyler is interested in understanding how mobility across spaces, including digital spaces, impacts learning.
My research is mobile. It follows learners across space and time, including through physical and digital venues. I ask questions about the dynamic processes of learning that extend across contexts, including formal and informal, local and global, embodied and digital. While sociocultural theories of learning and literacy serve as the foundation for my work, theoretical orientations from other venues—from communications to human geography—help me understand issues of space, time, mobility, and embodiment.
With the emergence of technologies like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, TLT continues to partner with faculty to explore and demonstrate ways these technologies can impact teaching, learning, and research. With Ty’s project, we have the potential to impact all three, and also actively include students in our work. Both faculty and students will be involved in co-designing virtual learning spaces through VR technology, and faculty development efforts can be embedded in these activities, providing a reflection point for faculty focusing on the role of specific design aspects of learning spaces, such as furniture, lighting, and technology, on pedagogy.
In short, by embedding individuals in innovative spaces via VR, this project seeks to create immersive, embodied simulations of learning spaces for students, teachers, and designers to inhabit. In turn, students, teachers, and designers can critically reflect on the role of space in learning and begin to think spatially toward the design of future learning spaces on campus and beyond.
We look forward to working with Ty throughout the next year, to better understanding how VR and learning spaces can come together in interesting ways to have a positive impact on teaching and learning!
Tyler’s team includes:
Crystal Ramsay (lead)