Classroom. Students start their physics class. Today they get to know the solar system from the inside. They will literally travel through its farthest recesses aboard a spaceship. Several dozen minutes later, during a geography lesson, they will find themselves in various types of forests that exist in the world. They will be able to interact with the animals inhabiting them or dynamically change the weather conditions. Is it science fiction? No. Such lessons are already taking place. The only possibility to conduct classes in this way is to use virtual reality.
After putting on the VR goggles, students not only get the opportunity to find themselves in inaccessible places, but most of all they remember the content conveyed to them much more effectively.
Scientific research shows that people in virtual reality are able to assimilate about 50% more information than if they acquired it in a traditional way.
VR in education and the level of engagement
Virtual reality is a so-called native medium. No other medium (radio, television, cinema or the Internet) allows such a degree of involvement as in the case of using VR. In the world of virtual reality, we move exactly the same way as in the real world. Depending on the type of application and equipment we have – we can move freely, pick up objects, drop them, etc. We interact with the experience in the VR world exactly as in the real world. We are 100% committed to this world. Therefore, by using VR in education, we can engage the viewer much more effectively, which translates into better understanding and remembering the topic.
Virtual reality in education and the level of knowledge acquisition
The latest scientific research clearly confirms that when a person engages better with a given message, he is able to assimilate knowledge much faster and more effectively. In the case of using virtual reality in education, an average increase in content memorability is observed at the level of about 50% compared to the methods known so far. It is influenced not only by the very possibility of being in the VR world, but also by interacting with objects and elements of the virtual world.
To learn more about immersive VR spaces designed for educations, visit: mazerspace.com/education/
VR and education – the ability to explore inaccessible places
By using virtual reality in education – e.g. in the area of historical topics, we can take the viewer, for example, to ancient Greece and let him face the characters and heroes from several thousand years ago. The user can interact with these people, explore places that no longer exist, and perform whatever activities the software developers have planned.
VR applications and 360 movies in education – simulation of difficult and dangerous phenomena
In virtual reality, we are able to take any number of training participants to the most dangerous places in the world without the slightest risk. Anyone can observe dangerous phenomena up close, or undergo training in places where they could not be found in the real world.
How to effectively use virtual reality in education?
Virtual reality currently offers two types of experiences: interactive VR applications and 360 movies. VR applications are created like computer games and allow us to virtually unlimited space exploration and interacting with objects. An example of this type of solution is our VR application for learning forest ecosystems presented at the beginning of the article.
360 movies are images of the real world captured with 360 cameras. They have a much higher level of realism than VR applications, but offer much less possibilities to expand interactivity.
When using virtual reality in education, you need to remember the following:
1. The realism of the presented phenomena is the most important. If we create any VR educational experience, we must reproduce it at least as accurately as it occurs in the real world. When seriously considering the use of virtual reality in education, one must first of all take into account the level and quality of experiences. Only then can we speak of substantively effective education.
2. Virtual reality is a completely new medium that has its own rules. In the case of the tools used in education so far (films, illustrations in books), we always dealt with a flat image that was at a distance from us. In virtual reality, the image surrounds us from every side. Therefore, the perspective in which we acquire knowledge is changing. The way this knowledge is presented is changing.
3. Virtual reality allows you to map virtually every process and every event at any moment in time. Thus, VR solutions have virtually no limitations. When using VR in education, it is worth carefully considering the content we want to create and transfer the most surprising and engaging scenarios to the VR world. This is a new medium that is currently being developed by the pioneers of the industry. Everything is allowed as long as it serves the end user.