Teaching an Introductory Programming Course in a Virtual World
Source: Louisiana State University
Computer science education is facing a significant challenge in the form of steeply declining enrollments. Computer science educators are examining many aspects of what people do, including the manner in which they introduce programming to their students. This paper reports on an approach which makes use of a massively multiuser online virtual world environment, Second Life, to teach introductory programming. In Second Life, one can create 3D graphical objects and give them behaviors by writing scripts (programs) in a C-like language - Linden Scripting Language (LSL). The suitability of LSL for teaching programming is discussed as well as the benefits and the drawbacks of using Second Life for this purpose.