Since the pandemic began, students have been saying they’re not learning enough. You can’t blame them; virtual classes don’t often have the social dimension and tangible feel of face-to-face classes.
But distance learning is the safest option in our current situation. To maximize it, institutions need to change the way students learn.
Extended Reality (XR) in education is an excellent—and fun—way to enhance learning. From immersion to gamification, XR can elevate traditional teaching to deliver a better student experience.
Traditional classroom teaching relies heavily on passive instruction and frequent assessments and focuses on fact retention. Listening to lectures, studying for tests, and visualizing concepts from textbooks make up a student’s typical classroom experience.
The introduction of XR—the collective term for augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), and mixed reality (MR) technologies—allows learners to experience education in more engaging and immersive ways. XR-based teaching provides training opportunities without pressure or the feeling of being in “danger.” It also allows repeated opportunities for practice.
To confirm this, the World Bank commissioned a 2021 study on how VR training affects student learning and skills development. The researchers gave the following conclusions:
Through XR, students are not limited to textbook descriptions or illustrations. They are given a chance to learn subjects by experiencing them virtually.
A University of Warwick study found that VR surpasses books and videos in information retention. Among their student participants, those who studied using VR showed higher marks in reports and test results. The researchers said the level of immersion and engagement in VR created a positive learning experience that allowed participants to remember pieces of information.
Immersion also benefits medical education. When the Western University of Health Sciences opened its J and K Virtual Reality Learning Center, it became the first US school to build a curriculum around XR. They offer life-sized anatomical visualizations of real patients and cadavers and the option to perform a dissection virtually.
Another advantage of XR technology is its capability to create personalized learning experiences for users and implement bespoke solutions for organizations or groups. This is possible by accessing analytics data captured by the embedded tracking features of XR devices, such as VR headsets.
Such data may include user movements, speed, errors, completed tasks, and others. Analyzing this data can provide a wealth of insights regarding lesson effectiveness and areas of improvement. Students will be able to track their progress and constantly evaluate their learning abilities.
Teachers can also use the same data to generate predictive insights and figure out how to address learning gaps in individuals or groups. They may tailor lessons to the current learning needs of a student.
You don’t really move away from games, no matter how adult you become. With XR, interactive games can be used for teaching. Gamifying education may be the best way to attract and retain students’ attention in real and virtual classrooms.
Gamification increases long-term retention by 12% and overall school performance by 7%, according to Swinburne University of Technology’s research findings. The learner seems to forget they are “working” and feels that they are merely “playing,” which is why it works.
Game-based learning isn’t even new. Kahoot!, a popular game-based learning app, has been gamifying learning since 2013. With the emergence of XR, Kahoot! is now just one of many game-based learning platforms available today.
VR training, immersion, personalized learning, and gamification—these are just a few ways XR has changed education today. But full implementation of XR technology in education might be just around the corner. Is your organization ready for it?
VEDX provides VR education solutions for schools, enterprises, and governments. It is dedicated to improving the virtual learning experience of students and trainees through immersive technologies.
Contact us today to learn more or to start your own VR experience.