The humanities have interesting stories to tell, and immersive three-dimensional (3D), virtual reality (VR), and augmented reality (AR) experiences can be persuasive ways of sharing these stories. The question is, how best to design and develop these experiences so that effective learning and teaching can occur.

My research is grounded in constructivist learning theory and examines the mental models that learners assemble in order to understand and navigate virtual environments. As you see in the video above, users interact with objects in a virtual environment in much the same manner as they would in a real one, relying on preexisting mental models to help them make sense of the environment in which they are located. These models are continually being modified by linguistic, aural, and haptic feedback that users receive from their interaction with the environment. I am particularly interested in how this interaction can be leveraged to promote the acquisition of situated linguistic and cultural knowledge in second language learners.

Download a PDF of my curriculum vitae here.

Selected Publications

Refereed Publications

Ramey, L., Neville, D., et al. (2019). Revisioning the Middle Ages: Immersive environments for teaching medieval languages and culture. Digital Philology: A Journal of Medieval Cultures, 8(1), 86-104.

Yao, S., Queathem, E., Neville, D., & Kelty-Stephen, D. (2018). Teaching movement science with full-body motion-capture in an undergraduate psychology class. Research in Learning Technology, 26.

Neville, D. (2016) Creating a blended learning environment for business German: Development and implementation guidelines.Unterrichtspraxis / Teaching German, 49(1), 57-68. Best Article of the Year Award (2017).

Neville, D. (2014). The story in the mind: The effect of 3D gameplay on the structuring of written L2 narratives. ReCall Journal: The Journal of the European Association for Computer Assisted Language Learning, 27(1), 1-17.

Neville, D. & Shelton, B. (2010). Literary and historical 3D-DGBL: Design guidelines. Simulation & Gaming: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Theory, Practice and Research, 41(4), 607-629.

Neville, D. (2010). Structuring narrative in 3D digital game-based learning environments to support second language acquisition. The Foreign Language Annals, 43(3), 445-468.

Neville, D., Shelton, B., & McInnis, B. (2009). Cybertext redux: Using DGBL to teach L2 vocabulary, reading, and culture. Computer Assisted Language Learning, 22(5), 409-424.

Neville, D. (2008). The bodies of the bride: The language of incarnation, transcendence, and time in the poetic theology of the medieval mystic Mechthild of Magdeburg. Mystics Quarterly: The Academic Journal Of Medieval Western-European Mysticism, 34(1-2), 1-34.

Neville, D. & Britt, D. (2007). A problem-based learning approach integrating foreign language into engineering. The Foreign Language Annals, 40(2), 226-246.

Non-Refereed Publications

Neville, D. (2019). Enhancing the liberal arts with extended reality. University-Industry Innovation Magazine, 2, 28-31.

Georgieva, M., Craig, E., Pfaff, D., Neville, D., & Burchett, B. (2017). 7 Things You Should Know About AR/VR/MR. Washington, DC: EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative (ELI).

Neville, D. (2011). The future of language education: Facilitating collaboration through technology. The Language Educator, 6(5), 36-38.

Neville, D. (2009). In the classroom: Digital game-based learning in second language acquisition. The Language Educator, 4(6), 47-51.

Neville, D. (2009). Recession-proofing the profession with technology. The Language Educator, 4(2), 52-56.

Recent Presentations

Designing and developing VR experiences: A liberal arts approach. Associated Colleges of the Midwest Summer Workshop on 3D/VR/AR. 15 July 2019.

Grinnell College’s Immersive Experiences Laboratory (GCIEL): Using virtual reality to promote interdisciplinary collaboration in the liberal arts. ELI Online Event | eXtended Reality (XR): How AR, VR, and MR are Extending Learning Opportunities. 22 May 2018, With Damian Kelty-Stephen (Co-Presenter).

Virtual reality for the liberal arts and social good. HackGC Conference. Grinnell, Iowa, 20-22 April, 2018.

Visualizing difficult historical realities: The Uncle Sam Plantation project. HASTAC 2017: The Possible Worlds of Digital Humanities. Orlando, Florida, 02-04-November, 2017. With Sarah Purcell (Co-Presenter). Top Three Print Poster in the 2017 HASTAC Conference Poster Competition.

Ab in die Zukunft! Blended learning and immersive environments for German language and culture instruction. Iowa American Association of Teachers of German (AATG) Spring Meeting. Grinnell College, 22 April, 2017.

Using a self-designed video game to improve writing outcomes. Immersive Video Games for Learning Medieval Language and Culture. Vanderbilt University, 10 December, 2016.

Creating language learning games for the classroom. Immersive Video Games for Learning Medieval Language and Culture. Vanderbilt University, 09 December, 2016.

The Uncle Sam Plantation: A 3D/VR Learning Environment for Teaching Lost and Difficult Histories. Advanced Challenges in Theory and Practice in 3D Modeling of Cultural Heritage Sites. University of California – Los Angeles, 20-23 June, 2016.