Düsseldorf University

ChaucerOnce and Future World - The Middle Ages in Second Life®

This was the title of a seminar I taught in the winter semester 2007/08 at the Chair of Medieval English Literature and Historical Linguistics at the Heinrich-Heine-University of Düsseldorf.

Next to concept development and organization before the start of the seminar, I also gave the actual classes and supported participants in their online work.

In a combination of on-campus lessons and online sessions in-world, we built and embellished a Medieval Village and explored the educational possibilities offered by this platform. Buildings, objects and multimedia-based information on texts, genres, historical background and persons from the Old and Middle English periods were freely available to all Second Life® visitors world-wide.

The seminar was based on project-oriented work in a number of teams, allowing each participant to contribute his or her individual strengths – whether research, writing, building, scripting or just generally coming up with exciting new ideas.

In a blog, I documented my own journey and experiences in Second Life® during the preparation phase, focusing especially on its potential from a pedagogical viewpoint. During the seminar, it served as a course platform and was used by the participants to discuss the seminar on a meta-level as well as to do some creative writing.