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Academic Papers

Second Life® and classical music education

This article originally appeared in the Journal of Virtual World Research, Vol. 2. No. 1. April 2009.

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Since January 2007, Music Academy Online, a web-based business dedicated to generating interest in classical music, has been developing a ‘Disney World for Classical Music’ in the virtual world of Second Life®. The virtual world provides a unique opportunity to teach classical music in an interdisciplinary fashion, the ability to reach out to a population that is hesitant to explore classical music, and a way for reaching out to those who have been disenfranchised by traditional educational paths. This has led to the development of iconography in Second Life that exploits the virtual world’s inherent ability to put seemingly disparate information together in a way that encourages questioning and discussion. But above all, this has led to the conclusion that the importance of human interaction and the Socratic method are the key elements in virtual world education.