My daughter, Young Ms K, is currently going through the process of looking at universities, to get a better idea where she might want to go. The various universities hold open days, when prospective students can come along for an in-depth look and ask suitably penetrating questions (like: "How much is beer in the students' union?" and "Where's the nearest curry house?"). This is all fine and dandy, but it does mean potentially travelling the length and breadth of the country to get around all the uni's of interest. Wouldn't it be more convenient if the university came to you?
Well according to this article on the BBC News website, that seems to be what's on offer from Liverpool Hope University, who are setting up a virtual open day on Second Life. This Thursday, visitors will be able to meet with students (and faculty?) on the virtual campus. To quote from the article:
Dr Charlie Blake, head of media, film and communications at the university said: "The Open Day will be an innovative and exciting interactive experience for our visitors. Student Ambassadors have already created their own virtual characters that will be on hand throughout the day to talk to prospective students and offer them advice about studying at Liverpool Hope University."
OK it's not a replacement for actually going there, in the flesh, and seeing what's what. But it is a nice idea in any case. From the sound of it, the site has been built by students. This is quite common for university builds, and is often the work of Digital Media students.A number of UK universities have sites in Second Life, including: Edinburgh; Coventry; Leeds Metropolitan; University of Warwick; Brunel and many more.