” There’s nothing intrinsically educational about Second Life. …, it’s what you do with it — technologies don’t have an inevitable consequence; it’s based on the choices we make on the ground, within our own societies, for how we use these technologies.” …… Henry Jenkins


Salt Marsh Dynamics




Endangered Ecosytems – The Salt-Water Marsh
FIG Submission – 2008 – 2010
ENV 1019NA/AA and ERTH 1019NA (Professor Martha Schoene)
BIOL 2341 AA (Professor Marian Glenn)
Faculty Member:  Marian Glenn and Martha Schoene
Instructional Designer:  Heidi Trotta
Final EdM Paper – Submitted June, 2010

Salt Marsh Dynamics











Applications for the New Media Consortium Learning Prize
Endangered Ecosystems – The Salt Water Marsh (Part 1 – The Physical Environment)
Endangered Ecosystems – Hidden Secrets of the Salt Water Marsh (Part 2 – A Case-Based Scenario)  – awarded, Summer 2008
New Media Consortium, June 2008

Abstract:  Students come into college with pre-assumptions on how things work. When faced  with complex problems, students jump to conclusions based on what they can physically see and their past experience. Based on real world contexts, case-based  learning has been used effectively to help students become team-oriented problem  solvers. Virtual worlds offer the tools and affordances to build graphically rich, interactive learning environments. In order to better support the educational  community, this proposal seeks to develop a set of tools, inspired by the popular  games Myst and Nancy Drew, to allow for the development for interactive case-based  learning scenarios.

Second Life Curriculum Project
Co-Authored the development of a Second Life curriculum based on NMC Second Life Workshops
Other contributors/authors/co-conspirators:  Rachel Smith, Christopher Holden and Beth (NMC)

Virtual Worlds in K-12    (postponed)
Faculty Member:  Rosemary Skeele
Instructional Designer:  Heidi Trotta
Fall 2008, Spring 2009

Staying current with the ever-evolving technologies available for teaching is important, but discovering how they can be used to improve learning is a bigger challenge and of greater consequence. The effective infusion and the development of best practices for new and emerging technologies to support teaching and learning in the K-8 classroom is the goal of EDST3700/6307- Integrating Curriculum and Technology. Developing virtual world activities and resources for the K-8 environment using virtual worlds and a SMART Board meets our course objectives. This would be a new adventure for Seton Hall and the College of Education. The technology fosters constructivist learning, collaborative or individual projects, integration of software applications, and “unintentional” learning enabling learners to acquire knowledge while completing a desired task. The grant project will be shared with other teachers through the development of a video about the project.

Biohazard Training Using Virtual Worlds
PSMA 8511VU Topics in Health Management
Faculty Member:  Annie Hewitt
Instructional Designer:  Heidi Trotta
Spring 2008

Hewitt, A., Spencer S., Ramloll R., & Trotta H. Expanding CERC beyond Public Health: Sharing Best  Practices with Healthcare Managers via Virtual Learning. Health promotion practice. 2008. n.p.   http://www.biomedsearch.com/nih/Expanding-CERC-beyond-public-health/18936263.html

Graduate students participated in a risk communication scenario to practice emergency management roles and behaviors using the Play-2-Train environment in Second Life. This project was funded and supported through a 2007 Faculty Innovation Grant.

Flickr Photos


House of Seven


Exploring Literary Texts Using Virtual Worlds
(course number)
Faculty Member:  Mary Balkun
Instructional Designers:  Heidi Trotta and Mary Zedeck
Fall, 2007

Mary Balkun, Senior English Faculty member, was awarded a 2007 Faculty Innovation Grant to recreate the House of Seven Gables in Second Life for her Gothic Literature. Students explored literary texts through the co-creation of objects, symbols and learning activities that had cultural, historical and literary significance in the novel, providing interesting insights into character analysis and themes in the novel.



Reaching Out/Presentations/Publications:
Balkun M., Zedeck M., & Trotta H. Literary Analysis as Serious Play in Second Life. In: Wankel C., Kingsley J., eds. Higher Education in Virtual Worlds. Bingley UK: Emerald Group Publishing, 2009:141- 157.

Critical Analysis of Literary Works Using Virtual Worlds
(Co-presented with Mary Zedeck, and Mary Balkun)
Symposium on the Evolution of Communication
New Media Consortium – NMC Conference Center in Second Life
December 4, 2007

Flickr Photos of Exploring Literary Texts

Historical Web



Virtual Teams










Supporting Virtual Teams Using Second Life
 – A Case Study in Emerging Best Practice
PSYC1216 NA  – Industrial/Organizational Psychology (face-2-face class)
Faculty Member:  Danielle Mirliss
Instructional Designer:  Heidi Trotta
Spring 2006, Fall 2006

Reaching Out/Presentations:
Supporting Virtual Teams in Second Life: A Case Study
New Media Consortium – Regional Conference
November 10, 2006
(Co-presented with Danielle Mirliss)
San Antonio, Texas

Engaging the Disengaged
New Media Consortium
Impact of Digital Media Symposium
(Co-presented with Danielle Mirliss)
NMC Campus, Second Life
October, 2006

Miscellaneous Presentations on Immersive Education:

Second Life Educator’s Skills Series: How to Make a T-Shirt and Gift Bag
(Co-presented with Nick Noakes, Director of Instructional Design, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology)
Presentation – The workshop was a hands-on activity actually in-world however, a PowerPoint was provided for reference.
NMC Second Life Symposium on Creativity Conference,
NMC Second Life Campus, August 13, 2007

Hit the Ground Running – Making the Most of Your Second Life
(Co-presented with Nick Noakes, Director of Instructional Design, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology)

Leveraging the Affordances, Minimizing the Barriers (Co-presented as part of a panel of four experts in the field of using virtual environments in education.  Experts included Cynthia Calongne, Hilary Mason and Nick Noakes)
New Media Consortium 2007 Summer Conference – Indianapolis, Indiana – June 6-9, 2007

The Bar May Not Be as High as You Expect: Considerations in Implementing an Immersive Learning Environment
Co-presented with other experts in the field, and served as a group and program)
EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative Spring 2007 Focus Session
Immersive Learning Environments:  New Paths to Interaction and Engagement
Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
3 hour Pre-Workshop