The Mission HydroScience (MHS) project seeks to design, develop and evaluate a game-based 3D virtual learning environment (3D VLE) for teaching and learning in blended or distance education. MHS targets middle school students in small and rural schools learning hydrologic systems and scientific
argumentation. An i3 grant (U. S. Department of Education) will fund four-cycles of design and development including usability, usage, feasibility and pilot testing. Three key aspects of our vision for MHS are learning progressions through levels of understanding water systems and argumentation competencies, learning analytics to create an adaptive system, and a teacher support system.