How AR and VR Can Make Students Laugh and Cry Out Loud – and Embed Them in Their Learning

Michelle Furtado


McMahon, W. (2018). How AR and VR Can Make Students Laugh and Cry Out Loud-and Embed Them in Their Learning. EdSurge, 28.

This article discusses a teacher’s experience using Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) hardware and software to teach English lessons in a College class. The teacher purchased forty AR headsets and used them to create lessons in which students could experience literature in innovative ways. As an example, for a study of poetry and lyrics he had them visit a U2 site which demonstrated interaction with a worldwide community in song creation and performance. Students were then asked to share their experiences and reflect on them. Students reported a higher level of emotional engagement in their learning than they had without the technology. After the lessons, the students were challenged to create products that would be useful using the software and hardware. They had to write up their proposals and present them to a panel of venture capitalists.

The article is a useful one, given the movement toward AR and VR technology. Students are already interacting with the world through technology with such games as Minecraft and Fortnite. This article discusses the value of incorporating immersive technology into teaching. The problematic portion is, of course, the current cost of such technology. While this may not be a viable option today in most k-12 public schools, the cost will probably come down in the years to come. AR and VR will no doubt allow more lessons to achieve the Redefinition level of SAMR technology integration.

Creating a Students’ Library Website

Debbie Gibbons


Schroeder, E. E. 1. & Zarinnia, A. E. 2. (2012). Creating a students’ library website. School Library Monthly, 28(7). 29-32. Retrieved from

Many librarians curate a website for their users. This article explains why and how a librarian should use the website to support knowledge creation. In contributing to a collective library website, learners engage in conversation and collaboration to build and share knowledge. They develop the skills of reasoning, problem solving, and the ability to work with others. The article names several elements of an engaging website and lists tech tools and programs for the librarian to implement.


As a longtime classroom teacher, I have been studying educational theories and trends for years. But in a recent move to the computer lab, the learning curve for educational technology has been steep. I appreciate articles like this which list technology applications and their functions in encouraging student learning. This article was published in 2012, so new programs have been developed since, but many of the tools suggested are still relevant.

Components and Factors in Integrating Information Literacy Instruction in Elementary Education Using a Virtual Learning Environment

Posted by Karen Kotchka


Kingsawat, K, Kwicien, K. & Tuamsuk, K. (2015). Components and Factors in Integrating Information Literacy Instruction in Elementary Education Using a Virtual Learning Environment. Libres: Library & Information Science Research Electronic Journal, 25 (1), 50-77.
This research article relates the results of a study in Thailand that implemented a Virtual Learning Environment to give all students access to information literacy skills.  The authors review both the standards and indicators that are important for students to learn in information literacy and the factors that influence the success of an online instructional environment.
The article did not give a lot of detail about how the Virtual Learning Environment worked or what the specific units of instruction were.  One point I did find valuable was that the authors said the virtual learning environment could support synchronous or asynchronous learning but the most important point was the quality of the teacher and learner reflection.

Copyright solutions for institutional repositories: A collaboration with subject librarians

Blaylock, Solomon


Leary, H., Lundstrom, K., & Martin, P. (2012). Copyright solutions for institutional repositories: A collaboration with subject librarians. Journal Of Library Innovation, 3(1), 101-110. Accessed 27 September 2014 from EBSCOhost.

The authors discuss the recently implemented practice at Utah State University’s
Merrill-Cazier Library of librarians performing copyright clearance on behalf of faculty submitting to the institutional repository. The article deals frankly with the opportunities and challenges posed by the new arrangement.


I have both positive and negative feelings about this article. On the one hand, I think the spirit of it is right on, and very timely. By addressing a process-related need, subject librarians at Utah State are creating opportunities for interdepartmental and library-faculty collaboration as well as expanding their individual capacities in the currently vital areas of copyright, metadata, scholarly publishing, and open access. On the other hand, the continued relevance of the homegrown institutional repository can hardly be taken for granted, and the opportunities for capacity building in this area are not especially broad or deep. I do like the way the authors are thinking though, and those of us in academic libraries cannot afford to neglect this kind of thinking at this pivotal time.

The future is in doubt: Librarians, publishers, and networked learning in the 21st century

21st Century Skills

Julian Zamora

IL-21st Century Skills

Menchaca, F., (2012).  The future is in doubt: Librarians, publishers, and networked learning in the 21st century.  Journal of Library Administration.  Retrieved from PDF Link.

This article considers the relationship between social networking tools, such as Facebook, and learning. It examines the consequences of personalization associated with such tools on research, critical thinking, and information literacy. New roles for libraries and librarians are discussed, as are the broader social, political, and cultural implications of changes to how students are educated.

We’ve all learned in this class that 21st century skills are a critical asset to have if you want to 1. Do well in school, and 2. Be successful in your desired career.  This is true because as technology moves forward, so will our jobs that use these technologies.  For the students that were surveyed in this study at a college, they understand how to use this technology, but the library use as a resource of references are dwindling.  

So what’s interesting is that the Menchaca advises libraries to become places of “networked learning”, where 21st century skills are put to the test and maximized with instructors, librarians and students.  At the same time, Librarians should be “research sources” and be better utilized in the online marketplace.  

Jolene Nechiporenko


Buerkett, R. (2014). Where to start: Creating virtual library spaces. Knowledge Quest, 
        42(4), E23-E27.

Buerlett does a wonderful job of explaining what virtual library spaces are.  In reference to these spaces, he comments on the why, how, and who.

According to the author, these spaces are important in today’s world of online learning and technology.  “Beyond allowing students 24/7 access to authoritative research materials, a virtual presence allow school librarians to promote the library program!”  In regards to online learning, the author states, ” If authoritative sources are not easily accessible through the school library’s website, students ill resort to the first result on their Google searches, often Wikipedia or

Buerlett’s steps to creating a virtual space include choosing a virtual platform, deciding on resources, assessment, and constant tweaking.

The author encourages creators to take into consideration that some students maybe using a mobile device or tablet, therefore the site should be made available on multiple platforms.
The author’s last bit of advice, “When ever possible, get students involved in the creation, testing, and upkeep of the site.  Students who curate information on their school library’s site not only learn more, they feel ownership and are more likely to use the site.