Michael Vallance

DepartmentMedia Architecture
Specialized FieldsTask design; Robot Mediated Interactions; 3D Virtual Worlds; Education.
Subjects in ChargeCommunication; Academic Literacy
Academic BackgroundProfessor & Director of the Center for Meta-Learning at Future University Hakodate, Japan.
DegreeEd.D, MSc., BSc (Hons), PGCE
Personal HistoryDr. Michael Vallance is a Professor in the Department of Media Architecture and Director of the Center for Meta-Learning (CML) at Future University, Japan. He has a Doctorate in Education from Durham University, a Masters Degree in Computer Assisted Learning from Stirling University, UK, a BSc(Hons) Degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of South Wales, UK, and a Post-graduate Certificate in Education from Greenwich University, UK. He has worked in Singapore, Malaysia, Australia and UK.
Starting Time of Employment10/ 2006

Research Contents

SUMMARY: Anderson et al. (2001), furthering the work of Bloom (1956), has proposed a hierarchy of knowledge consisting of factual knowledge (relating to a specific discipline), procedural knowledge (techniques and procedures), declarative knowledge (relationship between concepts) and meta-cognitive knowledge (knowledge of demands, strategies and one’s limitations). However, in accordance with the views of Dewey (1938) on education, Hase (2011) believes more is required: “The acquisition of knowledge and skills does not necessarily constitute learning. The latter occurs when the learner connects the knowledge or skill to previous experience, integrates it fully in terms of value, and is able to actively use it in meaningful and even novel ways” (p.2). Experts in neuroscience additionally argue for more ‘active learning’ through experience (Battro et al., 2011). A practical implementation for such active, experiential and, we propose, multi-disciplinary learning is for students to consider, analyze, solve and make personal meaning from engaging problems. Collaborative problem-solving promotes communication involving creative and interpretive meaning-making, analysis and reflective judgment (Tarricone, 2011). Due to advances in computer technologies, educators can now consider a wider range of problems and extensive solutions which can be implemented in both real and virtual spaces.
Robot Mediated Interaction (RMI) website http://www.mvallance.net

Attractive Factors of My Research

OCULUS RIFT: A disaster simulation has been designed in Unity 3D and viewed via Oculus Rift. In this immersive 3D space, students must use a robot to locate radioactive bins. Declarative, procedural and meta-cognitive knowledge are being researched.
OPEN SIMULATOR: Students are remotely located so communicate in our OpenSim 3D virtual space. Students in UK can control our LEGO EV3 robots in our Japan lab by manouvering the virtual robot in the 3D space. Our research is concerned with remote collaboration.
LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3: Task metrics are determined by Circuit Task Complexity and Robot Task Complexity. The TKF model is used for task designs: Tsukutte つくって (Create) – Katatte かたって (Share) – Furikaeru - ふりかえる(Reflect).


In 2012 Michael Vallance was awarded second place in the GameTech Federal Virtual Worlds Challenge by the USA Department of Defense (DoD), Orlando, Florida.

Research funding from Science Connect, UK Prime Minister’s Initiative 2 (PMI2), JAIST Japan kakenhi, DAIWA and Future University Hakodate tokubetsu kenkyuhi.

Major Books and Papers

Book chapters
Vallance, M. (2014). 3D Media Architecture Communication with SketchUp to Support Design for Learning. In M. Khosrow-Pour (Ed.) Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology, Third Edition. IGI Global: Hershey, USA. pp. 2410 - 2423. DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-5888-2.ch234

Vallance, M. (2012). Design and robots for learning in virtual worlds. In B. Khan (Ed.). User Interface Design for Virtual Environments: Challenges and Advances. McWeadon Education, USA. pp.268-284. DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61350-516-8, ISBN13: 9781613505168.

Peer-reviewed journals
Vallance, M., Martin, S. and Naamani, C. (2015). A situation that we had never imagined: post-Fukushima virtual collaborations for determining robot task metrics. International Journal of Learning Technology, Vol. 10, No. 1, pp.30–49.

Vallance, M., Yamamoto, T., Goto, Y. & Ibayashi, K. (2013). Task Fidelity: a new metric for measuring task complexity involving robots. Bulletin of the Technical Committee on Learning Technology, IEEE Computer Society. Vol. 15, Issue 4, October 2013, pp. 22-25.

Towndrow, P.A. & Vallance, M. (2013). Making the Right Decisions: Leadership in 1-to-1 Computing in Education. International Journal of Educational Management. Vol. 24, Issue 3. pp. 260-272.

# Publications website with over 80 papers at http://www.mvallance.net/publications.html

Message to Students

The innovative research seeks imaginative individuals who wish to contribute to the change in educational experiences.