Saadia Khan is an adjunct assistant professor of psychology and education at Teachers College, Columbia University. She has research is with looking at how using avatars in virtual worlds can improve learning and how they can make you feel better.
Saadia explains how Embodiment Theory shows how experience things with more than one sense can improve learning, and that virtual world avatars can also provide that type of multimodal learning. Avatars can increase interest, focus, motivation, engagement as well as making a more emotional connection to characters and periods in history.
She describes some of her research in using virtual worlds for education, and the importance of identifying with your avatar in order to have a self-image in the virtual world which can provide stronger sense of embodiment. There a lot of potential for using virtual worlds and avatars for education, and Saadia is definitely on the cutting edge of researching this field.
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