Virtuella simuleringar som metod i ekonomisk kunskap
Nyckelord:SOCIAL STUDIES EDUCATION, ECONOMICAL KNOWLEDGE, SIMULATION, VIRTUAL LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS, ECONOMIC EDUCATION
Students often perceive economic concepts as abstract. Virtual simulations may enhance students’ conceptual knowledge by allowing them to interact with various objects while learning content. The aim of this study was to understand the role of cultural resources in virtual simulations in social studies. Data were collected through interviews with thirteen Finnish upper-secondary school students 17–18 years old who took three distance-learning social studies courses using simulations in Second Life. The results imply that symbolic and human mediators were important for promoting discourses on social studies among the participants. The simulations of course content encouraged the participants to perform a range of activities (e.g. reflecting and analysing discourses in social studies). However, it is unclear how well the students understood theoretical or macro-discourses on the economy. Although this sample was small, and the study was experimental in nature, the results suggest that human mediators who actively question and challenge students are important in virtual simulations.