Wednesday, July 12, 2017

VR and AR in Higher Ed: More than Just Cool? - Nick Roll, Inside Higher Ed

Technology companies and instructor advocates are making the pitch -- and slowly making headway -- for the practical uses of virtual and augmented realities, especially in health care, art history and social work courses. “We don’t even know what we don’t know yet,” said Deb Adair, executive director of Quality Matters, a consortium of institutions and publishers that places quantitative measures on online learning methods and products. Still, she said, VR and AR are on QM’s radar, and the experience of going through the motions in the classroom would be helpful. Collecting data might be the key to getting skeptics to look at VR and AR beyond “cool,” said Ray Schroeder, associate vice chancellor for online learning at the University of Illinois at Springfield and founding director council for online education for the University Professional and Continuing Education Association. “Higher education is moving beyond just the coolness factor to looking at outcomes,” he said. But, he added, “What are the outcomes?”

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