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The rate of change of knowledge and information that is required in working and social environments as well as the rate at which knowledge is produced in every sector of human activity creates the need for institutions, companies and people to redefine the strategy of managing knowledge . The aim of this work is to study the role of three-dimensional virtual environment (3DVEs) in the creation and development of Personal Learning Networks (PLNs). More specifically this work focuses on investigating the role of Education Orientated Groups (hereafter “Groups”) in Second Life (SL). It studies the role of Groups in the creation and development of PLNs. The work explores the reasons that urge members of SL Groups in the adoption of 3DVE and the ways in which they use them to create and develop their PLN. For the purposes of the study, a qualitative approach is applied and the model of electronic interviews, Salmons,  is adopted. The collaborative and creative social characteristics of these environments encourage access to digital learning communities and contribute to the creation of new PLNs, while participation in activities organized by the Groups not only provides access to excellence and leadership in knowledge but also promotes innovative ideas on a global scale. The development of PLN, in these environments, facilitate professional and personal development, through sharing educational resources and developing good educational practices without spatial and temporal constraint s.
Date of Conference: 26-28 Sept. 2012