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The Contribution of Virtual Reality to Social and Emotional Learning in Pre-Service Teachers

DOI: 10.4236/ce.2018.910114, PP. 1551-1564

Keywords: Virtual Reality, Emotions, SEL, Teachers, Creativity

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Abstract:

This research focused on pre-service teachers’ experiences in a virtual reality (VR) teaching unit that was included in a special course, “Educating for the Future,” designed to enhance skills needed in the twenty-first century. The study examined how the trainees’ experiences of working with VR affected their social and emotional learning. The research population included 176 students in their second year of a four-year training course to become teachers in the K-12 educational system. The research questions were whether teaching approaches employing VR have an impact on student teachers’ social and emotional learning (SEL); and, if so, how collaboration in VR classroom activities and projects fosters learners’ SEL. The study’s main findings demonstrated that VR learning environments helped student teachers increase their social and emotional involvement in their learning and enabled them to become more innovative and creative as they harnessed the powers of VR. VR challenges learners with active teaching and learning and transforms student teachers into active participants who create and innovate.

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