INFO 298 Special Studies: Join VCARA, Get Credit!

VCARA Blog

Published: November 17, 2016

INFO 298: Special Studies Immersive Environment Project (2-3 credit opportunity), Spring 2017

The VCARA team is looking for 3-5 MLIS and MARA students to develop and implement a plan to increase and improve activities taking place on iSchool Island in Second Life during the Spring 2017 term.

The School of Information offers students the opportunity to take a special (independent) study course, INFO 298: Special Studies. This course is offered every semester. Note that this course is available only to those students who have completed the core classes of INFO 200, 202, and 204.

In general, students only sign up for INFO 298 when they have a special topic they want to study or research that is not covered by one of the regular classes. In some cases, students may also sign up for INFO 298 at the request of a faculty member conducting her/his own research, or a faculty member who needs an assistant for a research project.

Project Description:  Students would serve as members of the VCARA team to perform some or all the following:

Major focus for spring:

  • Help coordinate and participate in the 8th​​ Annual VCARA Conference, Wednesday, April 19, 2017, Theme: “Virtual Worlds: Through Space and Time.”
  • Help plan and participate in activities for the spring term (tours, events and presentations).
  • Help formulate a strategic plan for VCARA for Fall 2017 forward.

Additional potential activities:

  • Provide Second Life orientation sessions for iSchool students.
  • Create and edit video and/or machinima representations of Second Life activities.
  • Manage groups, announcements, and land permissions to support
 program advancement goals.
  • Work with others to manage VCARA’s Drupal blog, by adding updates regarding events, presentations, tours, etc. Continue to improve the blogs functionality and build awareness in VCARA.
  • Post VCARA event announcements to social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. Look for ways to reach out to newer audiences.
  • Perform other tasks related to VCARA and activities on iSchool Island as assigned.

Skills and abilities required:

  • Personal Attributes: Can work alone and as part of a team, is a self-starter, possesses the ability to meet deadlines. Must be proactive and able to manage multiple projects at once. Must be able to constructively collaborate with a variety of individuals.
  • Technical Skills (some or all depending on role to be assumed; training will be provided):  Experience in Second Life, building skills, ability to develop orientation sessions for iSchool students, familiarity with scripting, ability to create and edit videos or machinima.  Experience using social media (Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest), ability to actively manage updates in Drupal. 
  • Technical Requirements: Must have computer capable of participating in Second Life, ability to use audio communications, broadband Internet access, and access to a backup system just in case.

Application Process:

  • Submit a letter of application for membership on the team and approval for INFO 298 – 2-3 credits only.  In the letter, explain why you believe you are a good fit for the VCARA Team and submit the name and email address of one iSchool instructor who could serve as a reference.
  • Attach a current resume
  • Send both to Dr. Pat Franks, patricia.franks@sjsu.edu

For information about joining VCARA in Second Life, please refer to our VCARA for Newbies blog post. To request an orientation to Second Life and/or VCARA, please email Dr. Pat Franks (patricia.franks@sjsu.edu)