Exploring the Second Life of a Byzantine Basilica

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


This paper introduces the Laconia Acropolis Virtual Archaeology (LAVA) project, a cooperative exploratory learning environment that addresses the need for students to engage with archaeological excavation scenarios. By leveraging the immersive nature of game technologies and 3D Multi-User Virtual Environments (MUVEs), LAVA facilitates the adoption of exploratory learning practices in environments which have previously been inaccessible due to barriers of space, time or cost (Collis 2001; Aitchison 2004; Colley 2004).

In this paper we present our experiences and reflections during the development of a virtual excavation based on a Byzantine basilica excavated by the British School of Athens during 2000-1 (Sweetman 2000 - 2001; Sweetman and Katsara 2002). We consider the, benefits of allowing students to collaboratively manage and participate in a virtual excavation of the basilica and highlight how real-world findings can be used to provide an authentic virtual excavation experience. An infrastructure that supports a group-based exploratory approach is presented, which integrates 3D technologies into an existing learning management system to enable location-independent, self-paced access.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSerious Games on the Move
EditorsOtto Petrovic, Anthony Brand
ISBN (Print)9783211094181
Publication statusPublished - 27 May 2009


  • Economics/Management Science


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