Call: ‘When Virtual Reality Became a Reality’ – 5th Global Meeting

Call for Presentations

When Virtual Reality Became a Reality
The Experiential Learning in Virtual Worlds Project: 5th Global Meeting

Sunday 10th May – Tuesday 12th May 2015
Dubrovnik, Croatia

Submission deadline: January 23, 2015

For the better part of a century, science-fiction writers, technologists and philosophers have contemplated the arrival of a digital realm so immersive that it is neurologically indistinguishable from the outside world. Now it’s here” (Rubin, 2014).

There can be little doubt that we are at the dawn of an exciting new era for experiential learning in virtual worlds. Virtual reality devices such as Oculus Rift have the potential to bring about a major paradigm shift in the way we interact with and immerse ourselves in virtual worlds. Some people would even go so far as to argue that the new wave of virtual reality devices will change the way we work, play and even relate to each other. What does this mean for learning? To what extent will the experiences gained in virtual worlds influence who we are in the physical world, and vice versa? What are we learning through those experiences and how transferable is that learning from one world to another?

The “When Virtual Reality Became a Reality” Conference seeks to address these questions in an interdisciplinary forum that aims to increase our understanding of experiential learning in virtual worlds and provide a valuable opportunity to share experience and best practice, and debate future possibilities for learning within them.

As a field of study and applied practice, experiential learning in 3D immersive, virtual worlds is truly interdisciplinary and informed by a myriad of disciplines including psychology, sociology, education, anthropology, computer science, technology, business, law, the humanities, performing arts, and many others. We believe the conference will be of particular interest to anyone teaching, learning, training, researching, performing, doing business or socialising in any of these domains, including gamers, game designers, virtual reality developers, and other virtual world users.

Given the explosion of interest in devices such as Oculus Rift, Project Morpheus and even Google Cardboard, we are keen to encourage presentations that address all aspects of virtual reality, including augmented and mixed reality, haptics, audio and other non-visual interfaces as part of a broader debate on experiential learning in virtual worlds. As it is such a diverse subject area, a definitive list of sub-topics is precluded, but the following are indicative of the kind of topics envisaged by this call for presentations, papers and workshops:

  • Arts and entertainment in virtual worlds
  • Assessment and evaluation in virtual worlds
  • Business and entrepreneurship in virtual worlds
  • Case studies of those who inhabit virtual worlds
  • Education, training and learning in virtual worlds
  • Evaluation of virtual world technologies
  • Gamification (and critiques thereof)
  • Identity, presence and self in virtual worlds
  • Interpersonal communication in virtual worlds
  • Leadership and team building in virtual worlds
  • Legal, ethical and moral issues in virtual worlds
  • Love, sex, friendship and work in virtual worlds
  • Mobile accessibility of virtual worlds
  • Play, fun, fantasy and horror in the virtual world
  • Research methods in virtual worlds
  • Serious games
  • Sociology of virtual worlds and the Metaverse
  • Technologies and innovative practice in virtual world-building
  • The dark side of virtual worlds
  • The future of virtual worlds
  • Therapeutic uses of virtual worlds
  • Transfer of learning from virtual worlds to the physical world
  • Types of virtual worlds
  • Virtual world usage in health, social care, counselling and psychology
  • Virtual worlds of the future
  • Virtual worlds used for corporate training
  • What are virtual worlds?

The Steering Group welcomes the submission of proposals for short workshops, practitioner-based activities, best practice showcases, how-to sessions, live demonstrations, performances, and pre-formed panels. We particularly welcome short film screenings; photographic essays; installations; interactive talks and alternative presentation styles that encourage engagement.

NB. For the purpose of this call for presentations, we define virtual worlds as 3D immersive, graphical environments, representing realistic or imaginary worlds, in which users are co-presented as animated characters (avatars) and interact with each other and the worlds’ contents. We recognise the diversity and contested nature of terms such as virtual world or virtual reality and welcome papers that challenge the above definition and/or shed new light on our understanding.

What to Send

300 word proposals should be submitted by Friday 23rd January 2015. All submissions are at least double blind peer reviewed. Proposals should be submitted simultaneously to the Organising Chairs; abstracts may be in Word or RTF formats with the following information and in this order: a) author(s), b) affiliation, c) email address, d) title of proposal, e) body of abstract, f) up to 10 key words. E-mails should be entitled: ELVW 5 Proposal Submission.

Please use plain text (Times Roman 12) and abstain from using footnotes and any special formatting, characters or emphasis (such as bold, italics or underline). We acknowledge receipt and answer all paper proposals submitted. If you do not receive a reply from us in a week you should assume we did not receive your proposal; it might be lost in cyberspace! We suggest, then, you look for an alternative electronic route or resend.

Organising Chairs

Jim Gritton:
Rob Fisher:

The conference is part of the At the Interface programme of research projects. It aims to bring together people from different areas and interests to share ideas and explore various discussions which are innovative and exciting. All proposals accepted for and presented at the conference must be in English and will be eligible for publication in an ISBN eBook. Selected proposals may be developed for publication in a themed hard copy volume(s). All publications from the conference will require editors, to be chosen from interested delegates from the conference.

Inter-Disciplinary.Net believes it is a mark of personal courtesy and professional respect to your colleagues that all delegates should attend for the full duration of the meeting. If you are unable to make this commitment, please do not submit a proposal for presentation.

Please note: Inter-Disciplinary.Net is a not-for-profit network and we are not in a position to be able to assist with conference travel or subsistence.


Rubin, P. (2014) ‘The inside story of the Oculus Rift, VR’s singularity moment’, Wired Magazine, July [Online]. Available at: (Accessed: 6 November 2014).


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