Invitation to join new research into students’ engagement levels supported by VR

This study aims at empowering teachers to theorize student engagement building strategies from evidence-based evaluation of authentic data on students’ engagement experiences. The aim is to gain a comprehensive understanding of how teachers navigate and respond to student engagement during such activities. The proposal introduces Virtual Reality (VR) technology as a tool to enrich data collection in the study, offering a more immersive experience for teachers to observe and evaluate student engagement in a simulated interactive environment.

The first research question seeks to unravel the nuances of teachers’ assessments of student engagement in interactive writing tasks. It specifically investigates how teachers perceive and evaluate engagement, considering both limited and elaborate forms of student participation. This exploration aims to shed light on the factors and criteria teachers employ in gauging the depth and quality of student engagement during interactive writing activities. To enhance the exploration of learner engagement in interactive writing tasks, we propose incorporating Virtual Reality (VR) technology into the data collection process. VR can provide a more immersive and authentic experience, allowing teachers to observe and evaluate student engagement in a simulated interactive writing environment. This allows the teachers to observe student engagement in a more realistic and dynamic setting. This approach aims to capture nuanced details of engagement that may not be fully evident in written transcripts alone. Implementing VR-embedded evidence-based teaching to offer educators a profound understanding of challenging student engagement scenarios, observed in real-time through Virtual Reality (VR). This approach addresses limitations in traditional classrooms where a teacher’s physical presence might influence student behavior and performance. Teachers can experiment with varied strategies without potential consequences on actual student performances. VR-embedded evidence-based teaching not only addresses the limitations of traditional observation methods but also offers an unparalleled opportunity for educators to delve into the intricacies of student engagement dynamics. This innovative approach is poised to revolutionize professional development in education by providing a safe yet realistic environment for refining teaching strategies.

The second research question is oriented towards the formulation of strategies by teachers to enhance student engagement. By closely observing and reflecting on students’ engagement practices during interactive writing tasks, teachers are expected to develop strategies that can effectively promote and optimize student participation. This inquiry aims to identify the practical approaches teachers adopt to foster a more engaging learning environment.

Moving beyond the immediate classroom context, the third research question delves into the alignment between the engagement-building strategies identified and established educational theories related to interactive writing tasks. This investigation seeks to establish connections between the practical strategies employed by teachers and the theoretical frameworks that underpin interactive writing pedagogy. It contributes to bridging the gap between theory and practice in the realm of student engagement during writing activities.

Lastly, the fourth research question explores teachers’ perceptions regarding the process of theorizing from students’ engagement practices in interactive writing tasks. It delves into how teachers conceptualize and derive theories from their observations of student engagement. Additionally, it investigates the perceived impact of this theorizing on teachers’ overall approaches to instruction. This inquiry is crucial for understanding the meta-cognitive processes that teachers undergo as they integrate insights from student engagement into their teaching methodologies. 

The analytical approach integrates both quantitative and qualitative methodologies. Quantitatively, the study examines self-rated engagement levels and calculates agreement percentages. Qualitatively, teachers’ discussions and self-generated strategies undergo content-based analysis to identify emergent themes. Additionally, semi-structured interview responses are subjected to reflexive thematic analysis. This comprehensive qualitative method involves stages such as familiarization, coding, theme construction, review, definition, and report production. These analytical procedures aim to provide a thorough understanding of the complexities involved in teachers’ theorization of learner engagement in interactive writing tasks and the alignment of their strategies with established educational theories.

The research contributes to the field by bridging theory and practice, utilizing VR technology on the presentation of authentic data on student engagement, to support learner engagement supportive teaching emphasizing the role of teachers as active participants in the theorization of learner engagement. The proposed study holds the potential to enrich our understanding of learner engagement in interactive writing tasks and inform teaching practices across education, particularly within the realm of language education.

We extend an invitation to individuals who share an interest in our research project, particularly those with technical expertise and support capabilities in the realm of Virtual Reality (VR). We welcome collaboration from experts who can contribute to the VR aspects of our research proposal, enhancing the immersive data collection experience in the study of student engagement patterns and teacher participation during interactive writing tasks. Additionally, we seek potential educational partners who are willing to provide funding for the acquisition of VR materials essential for data elicitation. Interested parties are encouraged to reach out and join us on this exciting journey at the intersection of education, technology, and research.


  • Zohre Mohammadi Zenouzagh,
  • Wilfried Admiraal
  • Nadira Saab

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