Special Cyberbullying Event: University of Maryland Global Campus Cybersecurity Team

ENGAGE XR, Educators in VR event in a city virtual environment.By 2026, one in four people estimated to spent at least an hour a day in the metaverse to work, study, shop, socialize, and play. This creates a growing risk for cons, scams, theft, and cybercrime.

Learning to create safe and engaging metaverse immersive education experience for your students is about to become a critical aspect of a teacher’s training? Join us tomorrow in ENGAGE XR to talk to experts who are tackling the cyberbullying challenges in the metaverse with a very special session with Dr. Loyce Pailen and her team from the Center for Security Studies and University of Maryland Global Campus as part of the 5th Annual Educators in VR Cyberbullying month-long conference that is free and open to the public.

If you are a K-12 educator who wants to learn how to create immersive learning experiences in the metaverse, you should join us for this amazing session with Dr. Loyce Pailen and her team from the Center for Security Studies and University of Maryland Global Campus.

This session will be held on Friday, October 20, 2023, on ENGAGE XR, a platform that allows you to create and attend virtual events in VR or on your desktop. Click the event link for the time in your time zone and choose ATTEND to register. for more information on how to attend events via computer, laptop, tablet, phone, or VR headset, see our guide to attending events in VR.

University of Maryland Global CampsThe CyberGen program is funded by the GenCyber program, a joint initiative of the National Security Agency and the National Science Foundation to inspire the next generation of cybersecurity professionals. The GenCyber program provides free summer cybersecurity camps across the nation for students and teachers at the K-12 level2. The CyberGen program is one of the teacher camps that aims to facilitate teacher readiness within a teacher learning community to learn, develop, and deliver cybersecurity content for the K-12 classroom.

Dr. Pailen is an expert in cybersecurity, cyber policy, digital forensics, and homeland security. She is the director of the Center for Security Studies, which offers online programs in these fields. She is also the lead instructor of the CyberGen program for teachers, a free online course that teaches K-12 educators how to teach cybersecurity concepts and practices to their students.

“Cyberbullying and cyberthreats may be related to in-school bullying. Sometimes, the student who is victimized at school is also being bullied online. But other times, the person who is victimized at school becomes a cyberbully and retaliates online. Still other times, the student who is victimized will share his or her anger or depression online as distressing material.”
Kumar, A., & Singh, R. (2021). A review of cyberbullying and cyber threats in education. Academia

In this free one-hour session, Dr. Pailen and her team will share their insights and experiences from the CyberGen program, as well as discuss the potential risks and opportunities of metaverse immersive education. They will address topics such as:

  • How to apply the GenCyber Cybersecurity Concepts, ethics, cybersecurity careers, and online safety to design immersive learning experiences in the metaverse.
  • How to create cybersecurity lesson plans that are suitable for your classrooms.
  • How to deal with cyberbullying, harassment, hate speech, and other forms of harmful content that may occur in the metaverse.
  • How to support diversity, inclusion, and equity in metaverse immersive education.
  • How to build a culture of trust, respect, and responsibility among students, teachers, and other stakeholders in the metaverse.

The challenges educators face in preparing the classroom for expanded online presence, including in the metaverse with augmented and mixed reality as well as virtual reality, has been researched over the years, with new research coming out exploring even deeper.

“Due to changes in use and behavioral patterns among the youth on social media, the manifestations and risk factors of cyberbullying have faced significant transformation. Further, as the boundaries of cyberbullying are not limited by geography, cyberbullying may not be a problem contained within a single country. In this sense, cyberbullying is a global problem and tackling it requires greater international collaboration. The adverse effects caused by cyberbullying, including reduced safety, lower educational attainment, poorer mental health and greater unhappiness, led UNICEF to state that ‘no child is absolutely safe in the digital world.’.”
Zhu C, Huang S, Evans R and Zhang W (2021). Cyberbullying Among Adolescents and Children: A Comprehensive Review of the Global Situation, Risk Factors, and Preventive Measures. Public Health 9:634909M

Don’t miss this rare opportunity to learn from those in the field facing the challenges of online security, privacy, and protection. Join us for this informative and interactive session and discover how you can make a difference in metaverse immersive education.

For more information, see Educators in VR 5th Annual Cyberbullying Month in VR 2023 announcement.

Leave a Reply