Ed.D.,  Education: Educational Technology, 2010
San Diego State University-University of San Diego,
Dissertation: The Effects of Instructor Immediacy in Second Life, an Immersive and Interactive Virtual Environment.
Chair: Dr. Brock Allen. First dissertation to be defended in a 3D virtual world.

PhD course work in English, 1999-2000
emphases on 20th Century American Literature and Native American Literature.
University of South Dakota, Vermillion, SD

Master of Arts, English. 1998
University of South Dakota, Vermillion, SD.
Thesis: “Louis Riel’s Political Poems.”

Bachelor of Arts, major in English, minor in French Studies-cooperative, 1997
University of South Dakota, Vermillion, SD.

BA course work in English literature and composition. 1995
Morningside College (IA), exchange program with Université de Caen, France

Maîtrise, Etudes anglaises et nord-américaines. 1997
Université de Caen (France), UFR Langues Vivantes Etrangères.


Wang, M., Lawless-Reljic, S., Davies, M., & Callaghan, V. (2011). Social Presence in Immersive 3D Virtual Learning Environments. In Paulo Novais, Davy Preuveneers and Juan M. Corchado (Eds.), Ambient Intelligence –Software and Applications, AISC 92, pp. 59-67. Berlin: Springer-Verlag.

Allen, B. & Lawless-Reljic, S. (2011). In the Presence of Avatars: What Makes Virtual Teachers and Learners Seem (Un)Real? In Amelia Cheney and Robert Sanders (Eds.), Teaching and Learning in 3D Immersive Worlds: Pedagogical Models and Constructivist Approaches. New York: IGI Global.

Reljic, S. (2008 Summer). The Social Presence in Virtual Worlds group. Global Kids (Eds.). Community Discussions, RezEd Report, The Hub for Learning in Virtual Worlds, 1(1), pp. 15-16.


Lawless, S. (1995 Spring).  A Week Ago Yesterday. In Tim McMurrin, Ed. The Kiosk. Sioux City, IA: Morningside College.

Lawless, S. (1995 Spring). The Bird Cage. In Tim McMurrin, Ed. The Kiosk. Sioux City, IA: Morningside College.

Lawless, S. (1995 Spring).  War. In Tim McMurrin, Ed. The Kiosk. Sioux City, IA: Morningside College.


03/2012-present, Associate Online Faculty, Ashford University, San Diego, CA

Provide online instruction as well as post faculty guidance and expectations. Participate in classroom discussion boards, grade assignments and respond to student inquiries, provide timely feedback to students’ questions and concerns. Place a strong emphasis on student-centered learning and sustain instructional social presence to ensure students’ motivation and engagement.

04/2009-present Communications Chair, Applied Research in Virtual Environments for Learning (ARVEL), AERA SIG #173,

Manage the social network and support the wiki. Co-founder of ARVEL SIG’s Newsletter and SuperNews quarterly journal. Create and administrate the virtual world headquarters on CAVE Island in Second Life (SL)( Organize and host guest researchers and monthly public presentations in SL, and provide live streaming solution. Archive and curate research in 3D interactive objects on CAVE Island (SL). Provide workshops on best practices of 3d objects for better engagements and social presence in distance ed in 3d virtual worlds. Support ARVEL SIG executive committee with distribution of information via official listservs and public social networks, and organization of ARVEL SIG’s sessions and events at the AERA Annual Meeting.

09/2010-12/2010 Consultant, Project Autism, Dr. Magda El Zarki Principal Investigator, University of California, Irvine, CA.

Created demo-curricula integrating ABLLS-skills activities in virtual environments for independent-learning sessions. Compile and edit a directory of mobile apps, videogames and virtual reality spaces for teaching autistic children. Design a draft of tech-room with desktops, smartboard, console and iPads.

03/2007-11/2007 Consultant, Alelo, Inc., Los Angeles, CA.
Design of self-instruction materials for Tactical French, virtual world simulation of real life Sahel Africa locations for defense and national security applications. Trained and edited voice recognition software.

01/26/2007 Interpreter, Language Translation, Inc. La Jolla, CA. Client: Dimension One Spas, Vendor Convention, simultaneous English/French.
(also Registered Interpreter English/French for the Judicial Council of California 2006-2008)

09/2005-12/2006 Departmental Graduate Assistant, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA. Created and produced the Doctoral Student Council in Education quarterly newsletter, organized DSCE annual conferences, assisted Dr. Mason, co-director to SDSU-USD Joint Doctoral Program at the SDSU office.

02/2006-05/2006 Research Support, Dialogue coding in preparation of data analysis and discussion for Eklund, M. J. (working MA Thesis proposal 2006). Extending Key Theoretical Concepts in A Dynamic Model of Distance Learning. San Diego State University, CA

11/2002-11/2004 Program Director, Human International Academy, San Diego, CA. Helped design and develop an ESL school from ground-up. Managed all state, federal and international communications and duties. Created a Sacramento-approved curriculum and instructional programs. Trained and supervised staff and instructors. Designed and implemented a computer lab for technology integration in programs and for global instructional solutions.

09/2000-12/2000 Graduate Assistant, University of South Dakota, Vermillion, SD. Taught Introduction to Literature.

08/1999-05/2000 Graduate Assistant, University of South Dakota, Vermillion, SD. Taught Business Writing.

10/1998-06/1999 International Sales Associate, Gateway, Inc. North Sioux City, SD. Computer and software solutions.

01/1997-05/1999 Adjunct Teacher, Morningside College, Sioux City, IA. Taught Introductory French.


Editorial Advisory Board, Virtual Worlds Book Series, Springer Briefs, November 2010 – present.

President, Doctoral Student Council in Education, San Diego State University, 2007.

President, International Students Club, Morningside College, Sioux City, IA, 1996.


Lawless-Reljic, S. (2012, April 14). Sharing Knowledge and Mentoring Research on a Global Scale in Virtual Environments. ARVEL SIG Workshop, 2012 AERA Annual Meeting, Vancouver, BC.

Lawless-Reljic, S. (2012, April 14). Affordances and Constraints of Virtual Worlds for Formal and Informal Learning (Symposium Discussant). 2012 AERA Annual Meeting, Vancouver, BC.

Lawless-Reljic, S. (2011, September 22). The Presence of Avatars. University of Athabasca, SLurl Athabasca University 171/16/22. Invited presentation.

Lawless-Reljic, S. (2011, April 10). MUVE Your Avatar: Experimenting with Instructor-Avatar Immediacy Behaviors. 2011 AERA Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA.

Wang, M., Lawless-Reljic, S., & Callaghan, V. (2011, April 8). Social Presence in Immersive 3D Virtual Learning Environments. 2nd International Symposium on Ambient Intelligence (ISAmI 2011), Barcelona, Spain.

Lawless-Reljic, S. (2010, October 15). Leading Social Networks. Adobe Connect Interview by Dr. Lisa Dawley, EDTECH, Boise State University.

Lawless-Reljic, S. (2010, September 19). Getting Your Sea Legs (Activities and ARVEL SIG research). Center4Edupunx, Second Life, Front Range Island.

Lawless-Reljic, S. (2010, September 15). User Immediacy and User Creation in Second Life. The Virtual World Conference, hosted by The Open University, UK, in Second Life.

Lawless-Reljic, S. (2010, May 3). Conducting Educational Research in Virtual Worlds, Workshop. AERA Annual Meeting, Denver, CO.

Lawless-Reljic, S. (2010, March 15). Research in Social Presence and Immediacy in 3D teaching. TLT in Second Life, University of North Carolina.

Lawless-Reljic, S. (2010, March 12). The Effects of Instructor Immediacy Behaviors in Second Life. Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education conference. VWBPE North Sim, Second Life.

Lawless-Reljic, S. (2010, March 4). Communications and Technology. Invited panel with co-panelists Dr. J. Jamison (ImagiLearning Inc.) and Dr. D. Turner (U of Akron) by the University of Cincinnati in Second Life.

Lawless-Reljic, S. (2010, March 3). The Effects of Instructor-Avatar Immediacy in Second Life, an Immersive and Interactive 3D Virtual Environment. First mixed-reality dissertation defense (Second Life (Aztlan Island), San Diego State University campus, and UStream). San Diego State University, San Diego, CA.

Reljic, S. (2009, December 12). The RezEd Community In Focus. RezEd Podcast Episode 45. (Invited Interview)

Reljic, S. (2009, September 19). Getting Your Sea Legs. Talk like a Pirate Event, Center4Edupunx, Second Life, Front Range Island. (Invited Presentation)

Reljic, S. (2009, March 18). Make It Like an Action Figure Event. Mini-Morph, Comics in Classroom, Second Life, Front Range Island.

Reljic, S. (2008, December 12). How do You Script Presence in Second Life? Virtual World Research Discussion, Monash University, Second Life, Monash University 50/132/72

Reljic, S. (2008, October 3). Make It Like An Action Figure with Animation Overriders. Met@Morph Second Life Web-Comics Con and Conference. Second Life, Front Range Island.

Reljic, S. (2008, September 14). Social Presence in Virtual Worlds. Rockcliffe Open House, Second Life: Rockcliffe I 31,20,23. (Invited featured guest speaker)

Reljic, S. (2008, September 5 to 7). Social Presence Nonverbal Cues in Second Life. Poster presentation at Rockcliffe Arts Center -inworld location. (Second Life Educator Community Conference, 2008. Inworld event of real life event in Orlando, FL)

Allen, B., Aurilio, S., & Reljic, S. (2008, April 19). Virtualities? Rich Opportunities and Pedagogical Perplexities of Immersive and Social Learning in Virtual Worlds. WASC ARC, San Diego, CA

Reljic, S. (2008, April 16). Introducing Second Life for K-12 Educators. CE6-EDUC550 Class of Dr. Maria Schutt, University of San Diego, CA.(invited presentation)

Vitaglione, J. & Reljic, S. (2008, March 22). Somewhere Over the Virtual Rainbow: Bridging CALL Communities. CALICO 08. San Francisco, CA. (Machinima Presentation)

Reljic, S. (2008, March 15). Integrating Gaming into your Lesson Plan and across the Curriculum. ASCD Conference on Teaching and Learning, New Orleans, LA.

Reljic, S. (2008, February 4). Demonstration of my Bilingual SL Dictionary English-Lakota. NMC Teacher Buzz, New Media Consortium Labs, Second Life location

Reljic, S. (2007, December 4). Web-Based Tools in Adult Literacy. Literacy Network, San Diego, CA. (Invited presentation)

Reljic, S. (2007, October 27). MUVE It: Using Second Life for Foreign Language and Culture Instruction. Association for Educational Communications and Technology 2007 Convention, Anaheim, CA.

Reljic, S. (2007, October 9). Augmenting the MERLOT Tradition with Multi-User Virtual Environments: A Guided Tour. The MERLOT International Conference, New Orleans, LA. Mixed-reality presentation with inworld co-presentors Dr. Brock Allen and Cathy Arreguin.

Reljic, S. (2007, July 15). Games and Multiuser Virtual Environments for Education. Département de l’Education, Paris, France. (Invited presentation by the Ministry of Education)

Reljic, S. (2007, May 11). How to Integrate Technology into the Curriculum. Southern California Library Literacy Network, Anaheim, CA.

Reljic, S. (2006, December 8). MultiUser Virtual Environments for Language Learners. Language Acquisition Resource Center, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA.

Reljic, S. (2006, October 28). Teaching a Foreign Language with the Sims. San Diego Computer-User Educators, San Diego, CA.

Reljic, S. (2006, September 23). Multilingualim, The Brain and Web-Based Learning. Doctoral Student Council in Education, Symposium II, San Diego State University, CA.

Reljic, S. (2006, April 8). Multilingualism, The Brain, & Web-Based Learning. San Diego State University Open House, San Diego, CA. (poster presentation)

Reljic, S. (2006, April 4). International Perspectives on Education and Community Development. University of San Diego SOLES Global & Phi Delta Kappa International, San Diego, CA (invited panel).

Reljic, S. (2005, October 8). The Role of Gaming Technology in Computer-Assisted Language Learning: A Literature Review. DSCE Graduate Research Symposium, San Diego State University, CA.

Reljic, S., & Keithly, I. (2005, October 8). Technology to Education Underserved Communities. A poster session. DSCE Graduate Research Symposium, San Diego State University, CA.

Lawless, S. (2001, February). Janet C. Hale’s Portraits of Women. Society for the Study of American Women Writers 1st International Conference. San Antonio, TX.

Lawless, S. (2000, December). American Indians and Appalachia. Modern Language Association, Special Session. Washington, DC.

Lawless, S. (2000, November). The Cultural Property of “Race” in U.S. Texts. Native American Literature Symposium, Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

Lawless, S. (2000, February). Charles A. Eastman’s Perspective on the Ghost Dance. 8th Annual South Dakota State University Conference on American Indian History and Culture. Brookings, SD.

Lawless, S. (1998, October). Metis and Canadians. 21st Annual Third World Studies Conference. Omaha, NE.


Chair, EDTEC Track of IE’12, 8th International Conference on Intelligent Environments, Guanajuato, Mexico (June 26-29, 2012,

Proposal reviewer, Applied Research in Virtual Environments for Learning (ARVEL Special Interest Group, for 2012 AERA Annual Meeting,

Reviewer, Virtual Worlds in Online and Distance Education (2011-2012). Chapter book to be published by Athabasca University Press.

Reviewer, Australasian Journal of Educational Technology (AJET) (2011-2012,

Reviewer, e-Learning and education Journal (eleed) (2010-present,

Proposal Reviewer, mLearn11 (Mobile Learning Conference and Expo,

Proposal Reviewer, reLIVE11 (Researching Learning in Immersive Virtual Environments,

Chair, Virtual Worlds and Game Assessment paper session (AERA 2011, ARVEL SIG, April 9, 2011)

Co-founder and editorial board member of ARVEL SIG Newsletter and SuperNews (2010-present,

Participant, NSF Workshop “Research Directions and Challenges in Computer Games and Virtual World Environments,” University of California, Irvine, CA (September 22 to 24, 2010)

Founder and moderator of the Center for Social Presence, a project on 3d social presence and free workshops for educators. (2006-present)

Co-organizer of poster and exhibit sessions, Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education 2009 SL Conference (03/27-29/09)

Volunteer, Linden Lab Second Life Educational Support Faire (01/25-30/09)

Participant, MUVEnation 2008 programme (11/2008 to 06/2009)

Host, Met@Morph Comic Con in Second Life, Organized by the Comic Book Bin, the Center for EduPunx and the Institute for Comics Studies (10/03/08)

Proposal Reviewer, MERLOT International 2008

Organizer, DSCE Annual Graduate Research Symposium III (10/06/07)

Creator and administrator, DSCE website (09/2004 to 12/2007)

Session Moderator, MERLOT International conference 2007 (08/2007)

Organizer, “Akeelah and The Bee” Promotional Evening featuring a Spelling Bee Contest by the DSCE, promotional partner of Lions Gate Films.

Organizer, DSCE Colloquium (03/15/07)

Co-developer, Virtualities: Mapping Simulations and Video Games Onto Real Life, undergraduate Honor course development. Dr. Brock Allen, project manager, Professor of Educational Technology and Director of the SDSU Center for Teaching and Learning (02/2007).



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