There are good signs that 2016 would really be the year that virtual reality will be adopted widely, or at the very least the year that people star to see the development of a continuously expanding base of consumers and use cases. In the education industry, virtual reality would revolutionize how students learn, and the reason is simple. VR is not just a technology, it is a medium. Moreover, it will not only educate students about the past but also prepare them for the future, in particular jobs.
In the old days, textbooks were the only teaching tools that are used in transporting students to foreign lands or the solar system. Computers and tablets opened more opportunities, and even some video games. Now, virtual reality is letting kids experience historical places and planets like never before. For educators, virtual reality offers not only a chance to free students from the confines of school desks, exams and rote memorization, but helps improve their learning, via active participation and experience.
Education has not changed for years when it comes to teaching methods and approaches. These days, millennials feel pretty much comfortable with online learning, doing research on the web and resorting to instructional videos and distance learning that is provided by video technology. Virtual reality is obviously the next trend that will revolutionize the industry. Some VR projects used in schools and higher educational institutions are already under way. Education and technology are interconnected and this synergy could transform the world that people live in. The contradictory phenomenon is that even though an early adopter of technology, education is also one of the last sectors that is fully transformed by it, because of institutional inertia and several other reasons.
Virtual headsets and platforms are the new tools to inspire creative learning. Furthermore, the technology creates a world of imagination, which could break the boundaries in traditional learning. Nevertheless, its adoption needs not just time and effort, but completely elaborated methods to adjust the technology for the purposes of learning. Virtual game-based experience boosts student’s motivation. Keep in mind that motivation and engagement are major factors of game-based learning, and VR takes these to the next level. The very purpose of education is basically a key to self-knowledge. It is a tool to get a job as well as an experience that should be positive and engaging, given the many years that people spend on it. A game-based experience is motivating since it is fun. Nowadays, educators use games as a daily practice. While VR games aren’t the only source of engagement and fun in class, they could create a substantial difference. A lot of things could be accomplished in a virtual environment that will not be possible in real life. Moreover, it is memorable and contributes to one’s ability to learn.
VR introduces a new approach to rewards. The assessment of academic achievements and the progress of student reports are used in education for centuries. Nonetheless, VR will transform the traditional incentives concept in the learning process. Success is acknowledged, with rewards for achievements. In general, failures are ignored. This is the contrast of much education, wherein success is neutral and failure is punished. This type of rewards engage the brain and keep the students looking for more. Also, emotional reward could not be ignored. It creates a huge impact on the desire of a student to learn. While there always is a risk of discouragement, let alone competition. It’s not easy, there are challenges that could not be accomplished the first time and there is increasing complexity as well. Taking risks and trying other methods are good strategies. The rewards that students get for the challenges that VR provides are individual and collective. Players have to work together and benefit for various skills and specializations of the members of the team. Everyone on the team is vital.
Collaboration in VR classroom boosts social integration of learners. Students that struggle to be part of the class group were able to be accepted by their peers due to their technology skills. With the technology, shy learners will come out of their shells and the kids, lacking in confidence previously in their math abilities, became confident technology experts. Virtual reality is apt to students with various needs and styles of learning. Furthermore, it provides a lot of opportunities for peer teaching and group work. What is impossible in reality is possible in virtual reality. The pedagogies of game-based and constructivism learning shows that students learn best by doing or being. They shouldn’t just read about history, but they should be historians as well. They shouldn’t just study archaeology but should be archaeologists themselves. The capacity to introduce practical knowledge to a classroom without actually leaving the space makes educational experience invaluable. Instead of simply listening to lectures, kids could put words underneath a headset and get real experience but in a virtual wrapper.