Ready, Teacher One
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This study examines how French First-language teachers responded to virtual reality (VR) professional development in 2021 in the province of Ontario. The teachers used higher-end VR Oculus Quest 2 systems in a digital, polysynchronous, collaborative, virtual learning environment during eight fully-immersive teacher professional development sessions. The overall research by design model allowed the researcher and the teacher participants to address one of many gaps in the research on VR by investigating how three areas intersect: (1) teacher professional development, (2) immersive technologies, and (3) pedagogical design. The findings of this study suggest that teachers can interact in VR and collaboratively design immersive learning spaces to increase student engagement but that teachers require time and support to identify the pedagogical applications of VR spaces. Teachers working in VR can reduce physical distance and increase both collaboration and presence; this transforms the professional development experience beyond what was traditionally thought possible.