We are so accustomed to the separation of knowledge from doing and making that we fail to recognize how it controls our conceptions of mind, of consciousness and of reflective inquiry. John Dewey (1929, pp. 22)
In 2006, Seton Hall entered into a development partnership with the New Media Consortium to develop plans for the recreation of environmental learning spaces inspired by actual endangered eco-regions found both locally and around the world within the online, virtual world of Second Life. Professors Marian Glenn and Martha Schoene, along with the author, collected resources, identified flora and fauna and developed learning activities with the intent to pilot the effectiveness of these spaces and experiences on teaching and learning in Biology, Earth Science and Ecology courses on the Seton Hall campus. Design emphasis centered on promoting collaborative learning, advanced problem solving and the application of research and scientific thought though authentic real world contexts. In 2008 the author was awarded a New Media Consortium Virtual Learning Prize to create a companion application, Salt Marsh Dynamics that developed these plans even further into an interactive, graphically rich problem-based learning platform.