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Virtual World Links Magee And Mexico

University of Ulster researchers Michael Callaghan, Kerri McCusker and Julio Lopez Losada stand ready to open up new frontiers in the world of ‘virtual worlds’

Leading edge University of Ulster expertise in virtual world learning is being showcased in Mexico by a team of specialist researchers from the Magee campus.

Three members of a team at the Intelligent Systems Research Centre (ISRC) have been sharing their knowledge with students and staff at Monterrey Institute of Technology (Tecnológico de Monterrey) over the past week.

They are in The Serious Games and Virtual Worlds group at the internationally respected ISRC, a flagship institute in the School of Computing and Intelligent Systems at the Faculty of Computing and Engineering.

Michael Callaghan, Kerri McCusker and Julio Lopez Losada have been invited to the Estado de México (CEM) campus of the Institute to host a series of lectures, seminars and workshops on the use of immersive virtual worlds for teaching STEM and engineering related subjects.

The Serious Games and Virtual Worlds Group is involved in pioneering research, development and design in the increasingly important medium of virtual worlds and the application and development of video games technologies in education and workplaces. It is one of seven research teams in the ISRC, the success of which is giving the North West a leading role in the development of new technologies.

Lecturer Michael Callaghan said: “It is a great honour for us to be invited to the Tecnológico de Monterrey which is one of the leading providers of distance learning in Latin America and we look forward to working with colleagues who are doing similar work there.”

Research Associate Kerri McCusker said: “Virtual worlds are increasingly important tools for educators as we seek to engage the next generation of learners. Our team has seen a growing interest in the use of virtual worlds within educational institutes and their potential for impact on teaching and learning provision.”

Dr Jorge Ramírez of the Tecnológico de Monterrey said; “Technological change has reached education. Students want to learn and interact in new and engaging technologically advanced learning environments, socializing and working collaboratively.  We have invited the team from Ulster to share with us their extensive experience with these technologies. ”

For further information on the research carried out by the Serious Games and Virtual Worlds Research team contact Michael Callaghan, mj.callaghan@ulster.ac.uk, Kerri McCusker, ka.mccusker@ulster.ac.uk or visit the ISRC website http://isrc.ulster.ac.uk