The UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education (UNESCO IITE) jointly with its partners launched the webinar series “Harnessing Technology to Transform Education” aimed to strengthen global and regional partnerships towards the innovative and ethical use of digital technologies in education for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4).
On 27 April 2023, the third webinar “How Versed Are You in Metaverse?” was held in partnership with Asia e University and was intended to foster a discussion on the place and role of Metaverse in the modern digital educational landscape, its potential dangers and practical applications.
Opening the webinar, Ms. Natalia Amelina, Chief of Department of Teacher Professional Development and Networking, UNESCO IITE welcomed the participants and elaborated in detail about the continuous work UNESCO IITE together with its multiple partners has been pursuing in the realm of Metaverse-related topics since 2021.
In his talk The Metaverse in Education: Framework and Features, Potential Applications and Challenges, Professor Dato’ Dr. Ansary Ahmed, the Founder President and Director of Asia e University (AeU) dwelled on the theoretical and practical foundations of employing the Metaverse for educational purposes, including the existing and potential challenges. He also invited the participants of the webinar to check out the online course “The Metaverse in Education: What, Why and How” developed by AeU and situated on the E-Library platform.
The next speaker, Dr. Christina Yan Zhang, “The Metaverse Institute” CEO, outlined her vision of the future in which Metaverse is an integral part of education. She also shared her views on the future of employability and not only enumerated the problems and threats associated with the use of the Metaverse in education but also how they can be approached and their effects mitigated, technically and financially.
Finally, Dr. Roushdat Elaheebocus, Senior Lecturer, Department of Digital Technologies, University of Mauritius acquainted the participants with the the overview of existing studies on application of the Metaverse in education and provided practical examples of how declining interest of students in scientific subjects could be revived through the Metaverse and associated digital technologies.
The second part of the webinar was dedicated to a panel discussion. The experts answered a range of questions varying from the very practical matters of how it could be possible to make studying in and through the Metaverse more accessible to the necessity of regulating the Metaverse.
The recording of the meeting is available at the Youtube channel of UNESCO IITE.