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The role of Metaverse applications and reimagining in the future of education in business schools


   Nottingham Business School

   Applications accepted all year round  Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

There is ongoing research on importance of the extended realities (XR) of Virtual and Augmented Reality (VR and AR) in the educational environments. XR signifies to all real-and-virtual environments generated by computer graphics and wearables. The metaverse platform is a set of virtual spaces where you can create, produce and explore with other individuals who are not in the same physical space as you (Bosworth & Clegg, 2022; Hollensen et al., 2022). Thus, “the Metaverse will not fundamentally replace the internet or the “social media” framework, but instead build upon and iteratively transform it into an online 3D social media world, full of many new exciting user experiences” (Hollensen et al., 2022, p. 1).  Unlike MS-Teams and Zoom (and similar platforms) call that is organised and disappears when presenters/educators are finished, the metaverse is “always on” and allows social interactions with peers. Such a transition has profound implications for capability-building, teaching and learning.

Metaverse is a promising tool for transforming traditional teaching methods by highlighting learning concepts through engaging and interacting visual aids. It could help to establish engaging learning environments for students both virtually and in offline classrooms. It can also help the easy and regular recognition of errors combined with offering real-time editing capabilities. For example, it can remove the language barrier in teaching as it could be formatted and incorporated in any languages. Here, both students and educators can interact, play, socialise, and experience virtually, therefore such an interaction can enhance student level of acceptance, significant improvements towards rapid adoption of technology with the education sector (Dwivedi, 2022; Shin, 2019; 2022; Pappas & Giannakos, 2021). Needless to say, it is unlikely Metaverse (and e-learning in general) would ever replace traditional teaching experiences. For instance, it cannot transmit cognitive and emotional experience involving social interaction, gestures and body language in the real-world learning environment (Dwivedi, 2022; Pappas & Giannakos, 2021). However, Metaverse and VR technology will likely supplement and boost further traditional teaching within the education sector, if there are sufficient training and budget available for implementing this method to the traditional teaching experience (Dwivedi, 2022; Pappas & Giannakos, 2021). To this end, this project aims to unpack the new issues and trends in the Metaverse education from both students and educators perspectives. We anticipate a mixed-method approach, drawing on both quantitative and qualitative, but also relevant theories to understand the impact of the Metaverse educational engagement and related contextual factors during VR interactions. This project will be located within the Metaverse lab at NBS. There are some VR gears (Oculus Quest) devices available to run customized gaming application development (including virtual rooms) for research experiments.


References

Bosworth, A. & Clegg, N. (2021). Building the metaverse responsibly, available at: https://about.fb.com/news/2021/09/building-the-metaverse-responsibly/
Dwivedi, Y. K., Hughes, L., Baabdullah, A. M., Ribeiro-Navarrete, S., Giannakis, M., Al-Debei, M. M., ... & Wamba, S. F. (2022). Metaverse beyond the hype: Multidisciplinary perspectives on emerging challenges, opportunities, and agenda for research, practice and policy. International Journal of Information Management, 66, 102542.
Hollensen, S., Kotler, P., & Opresnik, M. O. (2022). Metaverse–the new marketing universe. Journal of Business Strategy.
Shin, D. (2019). How does immersion work in augmented reality games? Information, Communication and Society, 22(9), 1212–1229, 10.1080/.
Shin, D. (2022). The actualization of meta-affordances: Conceptualizing affordance actualization in the metaverse games. Computers in Human Behavior, 107292.
Pappas, I. O., & Giannakos, M. N. (2021). Rethinking learning design in IT education during a pandemic. In Frontiers in education (Vol. 6, p. 652856). Frontiers Media SA.

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