Immersive Learning

Over the last few days I have been on two field trips, one to the University immersive vision theatre and the other to the Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery. In both of these visits I was taught about immersive learning within the particular environment. The idea of immersive learning intrigues me as it is a relatively new concept which helps me to push my I.C.T specialism.

Immersive learning is when a student can be fully involved within an interactive digital environment (Marsh, 2015). This can be in the form of an immersive theatre, a headset that puts you in a different environment or even a digital land created online.

The immersive vision theatre is a renovated planetarium used now as a transdisciplinary instrument giving the audience the feeling of being in the video clip (Plymouth University, 2016). In the Immersive vision theatre they explained how they brought primary aged children in for school trips and took them on a tour around space. They showed how they can create 3D models of animals and the human body. How they manipulated the image and used sound to make it seem like we where moving through it. This fully technological way of learning is completely engaging. It would be fascinating to think that this could be the future to learning.

The museum over the next 4 years is being transformed and renovated to hold more exhibits and also to increase interaction and engagement. During the talk, it was mentioned that the use of 3D projections are going to be used to create an immersive environment for learning to take place. By using immersive technology, children who have a disability of the senses will be able to engage with the museum at a much higher level because of the different ways to learn (Villani and Wright, 2007).

Immersive learning can stop children worrying about grades and can also get them to work more independently (Tüzün et al, 2009). This gives hope to using immersive learning in a formal sense in the primary classroom.

I would love to see more immersive technology being introduced as a learning tool, I believe it creates engagement straight away. It also produces information for visual, auditory and kinesthetic learners as well as learners that learn best when reading.

References

Marsh, J. (2015) What is immersive learning, and how can it benefit your school? Available at: http://www.innovatemyschool.com/ideas/item/1239-what-is-immersive-learning-and-how-can-it-benefit-your-school (Accessed: 2 March 2016).

Plymouth University (2016) The Cosmic Perspective. Available at: https://www.plymouth.ac.uk/whats-on/the-cosmic-perspective (Accessed: 2 March 2016).

Vallani, N. and Wright, K. (2007) ‘SMILE: an immersive learning game for deaf and hearing children’, AMC Digital Library, 1(17), pp. 17. doi: 10.1145/1282040.1282058.

Tüzün, H., Yilmaz-Soylu, M., Karakus, T., İnal, Y. and Kizilkaya, G. (2009) ‘The effects of computer games on primary school students’ achievement and motivation in geography learning’, Computers & Education, 52(1), pp. 68-77.

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