How Using Virtual Reality in Education Can Improve Learner's ExperienceBy Ernest Hamilton, UniversityHerald Reporter
The level of education has significantly changed with time. Today, curriculums are more advanced, incorporating several elements of the technically advanced world we live in. As encouraging as it is to introduce new concepts, technology has also allowed us to reconsider not only what we teach, but also how we teach.
Virtual reality is one such tool that has made the learning experience more enjoyable and effective. Over the last few years, VR has moved from the realm of gaming to a more prominent role in professional development. Here is an overview of how VR can elevate the learning experience by offering an engaging way of acquiring information.
There are several concepts that require the power of visualization to understand them fully. VR provides an outstanding visualization that is otherwise impossible in a traditional classroom. Typically, students are required to comprehend a subject by listening to lectures and writing essays on the topic. While students look up write term paper for me on the internet, they are certainly learning through their research. However, as much as they can learn through words, they are missing out on the immersive experience.
Combined with Augmented Reality, the potential is tremendous. During the world-wide shut down due to the Covid-19 pandemic, schools in the southern part of India came up with a solution to offer lessons. They used AR to offer an immersive experience to students through online classes. Today, virtual reality allows one to learn in a simulated environment, where the learning outcome is much better.
The use of virtual reality in classrooms has also proven to increase student participation and engagement. Students are keener to explore the virtual environment, where they can make mistakes and learn. It encourages productivity, peer interaction, and other collaborative activities.
VR also has the potential to replace the need for educational tours to offer active learning. VR can provide laboratory and field trip experiences that are no longer limited by distance or accessibility. VR has proved to be promising applications in different medical areas. This has facilitated human body exploration without endangering patients and risking lives.
In a 2016 study on virtual reality in education, Rebecca Hite researched 20 middle school students on how VR can improve their education. The results found that both students and teachers gained improved science process skills. They also revealed better understandings of the nature of science. Subsequently, the use of virtual reality ignites imagination and the eagerness to explore.
Virtual reality, with the right approach, can encourage students to use their creativity. They become active discoverers, not merely being passive consumers in the classroom. They can contribute their ideas, use imaginary space by benefiting from the immersive technology.
Inclusive Learning for Students With Disabilities
The advent of the virtual learning environment is helpful in identifying the needs of students and offering beneficial solutions. According to researchers, the controlled environments created by VR are preferable over field trips. These are ideal for students with disabilities, such as autism, for whom perceptive skills are more advanced.
By utilizing the best of such facilities, learning can be made much more pleasant for students with special needs. They can also learn in their own time and pace, in a more encouraging setting, in a way that suits them.
Facilitates Distance Learning
Virtual reality is one of the handy tools that can help students and teachers overcome the barriers of distance. One can attend classes from any part of the world, not merely by listening to lectures or watching videos, but by participating.
Platforms such as AltSPace have innovative ways to help students take courses. They can do this while mingling with international students using a VR headset, right from the comfort of your home.
Virtual Rehearsals Through Training Simulators
Virtual Reality solutions not only have the power to impart education more effectively, but it can also help learners to train themselves. Today, interpersonal skills and confidence are crucial to succeeding in and out of the classrooms. Virtual reality can help students practice and hone these skills without the fear of failure.
Websites and apps such as VirtualSpeech have made significant strides in this department. They use photorealistic simulations to help students prepare for public speaking. The concept of virtual rehearsals can help to build confidence in new areas of training before venturing out to the real world.
Virtual reality undeniably has the potential to address the limitations of the traditional classroom environment. The available research and applications of VR prove to offer a promising future in education. It might not be recommended to replace student-teacher interaction entirely. But yet, virtual reality can be an exceedingly useful tool in aiding the teaching process. VR adventures can inspire students to become more active, creative, and pursue their curiosity.