How Can VR be Used in Education: Virtual Reality in the Classroom
Virtual reality has made a big impact in education, and it’s likely to continue being used in classrooms far into the future. VR and education are a perfect match because it’s often easier to learn from experience than just from a textbook, and VR technology can offer a range of up-close educational experiences. Schools have limited time and budgets for hands-on learning opportunities, and some struggle to fund just a few field trips a year. But with virtual reality, students can explore far-away places, travel into the past, or even go into dangerous settings like the middle of a hurricane or the edge of a volcano, all without even needing a permission slip.
Why Virtual Reality in Education Works
Studies show that for most students, reading and listening to lectures aren’t the best ways to learn. Students absorb class material better when they can be active and engaged in the learning experience. Virtual reality gives students the opportunity to do that every day right in the classroom. While immersing students, VR headsets shut out distractions to increase focus. Today, even the youngest students are exposed to a lot of technology, which has decreased their overall attention spans; VR uses technology to recapture their attention. Most students love using virtual reality, and bringing it into the classroom can make them feel inspired to learn and excited to go to class.
How VR Can Be Used in Education
Virtual reality can be used to learn about nearly any subject, letting students explore and interact with simulated settings in a way that helps them to synthesize information and retain what they learn. Students using VR can:
- Explore the world on virtual field trips
- Learn empathy for others by stepping into someone else’s shoes
- Find out about different careers through the eyes of people who work in them
- Go places they could never go in real life, like the bottom of the ocean or deep space
- Travel back in time to learn from historical figures or explore locations as they used to look
- Watch virtual surgeries or dissections to learn biology or anatomy
- Create their own virtual art
- Meet students from another country to practice a foreign language
- Explore nature by getting an up-close look at animals, studying rock formations, or watching weather systems develop