This presentation will address the kinds of support the author believes is needed to help faculty and students to effectively use and critically encounter XR, describing some of the technical and epistemic strategies which aim to balance technical competency with critical theory. The author will outline a post -qualitative approach (St. Pierre, 2020, 2021, Grant, 2018) to teaching VR and AR, in which students identify the materiality of technologies which are often framed as immaterial or removed from questions of their material and political implications. The author will explain how using VR has changed the way they teach, in particular the ways in which they frame spatiality in the pandemic and post-pandemic university.
XR & AI have long been sibling technologies co-evolving with each other. This keynote from Voices of VR podcast host Kent Bye will present some of the frameworks he uses to help navigate the interdisciplinary nature of experiential design, why embodied cognition so important for XR Education, and how to make sense of the recent inflection points in AI as well as where it overlaps with XR. He will also be exploring some of the ethical implications for both AI & XR, and doing a brief survey of the current state of XR education and where it might be headed in the future.
Andreas Dengel (Goethe-University of Frankfurt, Germany)
Anasol Peña-Rios (BT Research Labs, British Telecom Plc, UK)
Advances in AI have been accelerating in the past few years especially deep learning models that have gone viral during 2022 where millions have been experimenting with Ai systems such as Dalle-2, Midjourney and ChatGPT. This resulted in a heated discussion around whether to embrace such technology and transform education or ban such models for cheating potential. As these applications have major implications on education, the goal of this panel is to address educators’ concerns and possible ways to leverage AI in education and revolutionize the way we teach and learn. This panel hosts academic and industry leaders in machine learning and education to address concerns and potential opportunities of using Ai in education. Panelists will discuss how these technologies work, and address educators and instructional designers' concerns and provide guidelines for the use of generative AI in education.
- Sandra Okita (Director of the Gizmo EdTech Lab at Columbia Teachers College, United States)
- Lidija Kralj (UNESCO and Council of Europe workgroups on AI and education, Croatia)
- Keram Malicki-Sanchez (Constant Change Media Group Inc., the VRTO Spatial Media World Conference & FIVARS festival, United States)
XR Women has been holding meetings in XR Women Hall on the iLRN Campus every week since November 2020. In this panel, members of the XR Women community will describe the cutting-edge work they do in XR and Web3. They will trace their path into the field and the skills they brought with them as well as others they gained along the way, how educators can prepare students for careers in immersive tech, and how technology will shape our lives and work going forward. These women live and work in the XR future today, across a wide range of fields including game design, music, live events, art, Web 3, education, training for enterprise, brand experiences, museums and community building. You will hear how immersive learning is at the center of our activities and feel empowered to experiment with how immersive learning will impact your students, groups, and community organizations. Learning is life-long, and iRLN allows for more!
- Karen Alexander (XRconnectED / MetaVRse, USA)
- Paige Dansiner (Third Academy, USA)
- Celeste Lear (Boutique Electronique Music, USA)
- Robin Moulder (3lbXR, USA)
eSTEAM-powered Immersive Learning: Enhancing Experiences through Active Engagement and Collaboration
PRESENTER: Ian Fairhurst
ABSTRACT. This presentation showcases the use of immersive Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) in inquiry learning projects for students from Kindergarten to Year 6 at Knox Grammar Preparatory School in Sydney, Australia. The teachers will present a diverse range of inquiry units that engage students in authentic, meaningful, and enjoyable learning experiences that foster critical thinking, creativity, and collaboration skills.
The VR and AR projects allow students to explore and develop prototypes for different concepts and phenomena in a safe and controlled virtual environment, enabling them to observe, experiment, code and interact with 3D objects and simulations that enhance their understanding of complex topics.
The teachers will describe their approach to designing and implementing the VR and AR projects, including the pedagogical principles and technological tools used to create immersive and engaging learning experiences. Examples of student work and feedback will be shared, highlighting the benefits and challenges of using VR and AR in the classroom.
The deep learning demonstrated by the students through their inquiry projects have important implications for future research and practice in the field of immersive learning. Educators interested in incorporating VR and AR into their own teaching practices will benefit from the recommendations presented.
Overall, this presentation offers insights into how immersive VR and AR technologies can support inquiry-based learning across subjects and age groups. It provides a case study of successful integration of these technologies in contemporary classrooms, demonstrating their potential to engage students and enhance their learning experiences.
Raphael Freiwirth (Miramar College, United States)
Elena Zablah (The Commons XR, United States)
Creating and Understanding Individualized Real-Time Analytic Data Using AI for Student Academic Success While Reducing Bias in a Virtual Classroom Environment
PRESENTER: Raphael Freiwirth
ABSTRACT. Today’s technology finally allows real-time digitized data from a classroom environment, but what does it mean and how can we get structured contextual aspects from that to make a difference in how students learn? While an instructor’s observational skills and assessment related activities rule the environment today, classrooms of over 20 kids with distractions to students can mitigate all those efforts . We propose using an interactive and immersive (3D) Experience for dual purposes, the first is to obtain additional observational data points and assessment type activities to improve attentiveness augmented with questionnaires to assess a student’s well-being. The second is to use anonymity capabilities to further allow for openness and lowering of bias from other students for students to express themselves. Virtual reality is a tool to do just that. Join us to explore the possibilities of a classroom environment that can help the next generation of students transcend the norms of today and provide a smoother road to academic success!
Donna Davis (University of Oregon, United States)
Rita Men (University of Florida, United States)
More than the Sims: Harnessing the Power of the Metaverse to Ethically Engage, Motivate, and Connect the Future Workforce
PRESENTER: Donna Davis
ABSTRACT. In 2021, two issues that dominated both headlines and management discussions were the extension of remote work resulting from the ongoing pandemic and the explosive hype of the "metaverse." What if these issues were to collide? As industry and agencies alike grapple with engaging their remote workforce during the "great resignation/reset," the go-to platforms for meetings and gatherings have represented the "Hollywood Squares" video conference format. New issues of equity have emerged in this format for numerous reasons. In the metaverse, opportunities to build identity, experiences, and environments and to build engaged communities are limited only by our imagination. This panel will discuss the practical challenges of creating safe and productive environments and experiences when considering virtual worlds as workspaces and the digital identities we create in those spaces. Building on prior research, a mixed method approach will be utilized to ascertain both the platform manager’s expectations about participant identity, the student or trainee and employee experience in the platform, and the role identity plays in that experience. Researchers are recruiting participants from different immersive platforms (Virbela, Meta Horizon Workrooms, and Accenture/Nth Floor, Second Life). We expect the findings of this study will reveal different immersive workplace experiences, and customizable avatar identity will influence immersive work experience, productivity, and engagement. Anticipated outcomes will be a best practice guide for organizations, educators, and trainers hoping to use the metaverse for future work environments in a way that also breaks down contemporary challenges of diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace.
Much of the evidence on educational virtual reality (VR) is based on quasi-experimental, cross-sectional research designed to measure the effectiveness of a specific VR application. This research is commonly conducted by university or industry researchers on mainly adult populations. This presentation showcases a different framework for research from the VR School Study, now in its 7th year (www.vrschoolresearch.com). The VR School Study is predicated on a participatory model where teachers are co-researchers and student are VR content creators. The study is conducted over long periods of time in different primary (elementary), middle and secondary schools and across different subject areas to capture the practical, ethical, pedagogical and curriculum potential and constraints of integrating this emerging technology into everyday classrooms. The presentation will provide a comprehensive pedagogical framework, case studies on regulation and student creativity for deeper learning, and insights into effective curriculum design for teachers.
Assessment Framework for Immersive Learning: Application and Evaluation
PRESENTER: Chioma R. Udeozor
ABSTRACT. Technological advances, changing demands of students and employers as well as the stiff competition among higher education (HE) institutions are leading to the exploration and adoption of innovative learning technologies in HE. The use of immersive technologies for education is rising given their potential to complement current methods of delivering learning content to students. Among the benefits of these technologies to education is their ability to promote active, experiential and higher-order learning. However, what is still unclear to educators is how to measure learning in immersive environments. This paper proposes a framework developed to guide educators through the process of designing and implementing assessments when using immersive technologies. The assessment framework presented in this paper builds upon the principle of Constructive Alignment (CA) and the Evidence-Centered Design (ECD) framework. A qualitative evaluation of the proposed framework was conducted to evaluate how easy it is for educators to understand and use it for assessment design around immersive learning activities. The framework was found to provide familiar and user-friendly assessment design guidelines for educators. Lastly, this paper also presents a suggestion for the application of the proposed assessment framework to the design of assessments for an augmented reality game. It also outlines best practices when considering immersive technologies for assessments in HE.
A Framework for Analyzing Students' Behavior in Virtual Spaces on Mozilla Hubs.
ABSTRACT. The availability of a range of social Virtual Reality (VR) or "Metaverse" platforms provides teachers with the opportunity to use educational virtual spaces for both distance learning and face-to-face teaching, to take advantage of its unique learning affordances. However, devising virtual environments for instruction is a difficult task due to the requirement of knowledge which is distinct from other learning media such as slides or videos as well as the necessity to adjust these spaces to multiple learning activities and styles. To evaluate the educational virtual spaces and enhance their learning effectiveness, the monitoring and analysis of student behavior in virtual spaces will be crucial. This article outlines a project to develop a data-logging and visualization tool for teachers making use of Mozilla Hubs, a popular metaverse platform for education. The tool tracks student behavior and presents the data in 3D as raw data points or heatmaps, and only requires a standardized set-up with no need for client or server-side programming, thus allowing teachers with limited programming experience to use it. A pilot study was conducted with college students to examine the use of tutorial virtual spaces for Mozilla Hubs, which revealed that the framework can be utilized to characterize students' behaviors, such as how they browse instructional panels in virtual spaces. This framework will be further developed to include more visualization and analytical tools, such as trajectories and clustering, and will be made publicly available upon completion of the development.
Open Doors to the Arts: Community-Engaged Immersive Learning for Students with Disabilities
PRESENTER: Julie Fogt
ABSTRACT. Students with emotional and behavioral disorders and Autism have limited exposure to the arts and community. Their disability-related behaviors such as their inability to focus for extended periods of time and social skills deficits often create barriers to accessing and navigating the arts. These students also struggle to make connections and lack background knowledge necessary to extend their curiosity for the arts. Current applications of VR in educational settings often include immersive content presented to students through individual headsets. This project aims to use a shared immersive learning format to foster student interest in the arts through exposure to 360 degree immersive content in a space designed for groups of students to collectively experience content. Immersive content will be presented to the students via an Immersive Learning Center (ILC) where 360 degree content wraps around three walls of a room to create a shared learning experience. The 360 degree and 3D immersive content developed in partnership with a local university’s undergraduate students will allow K-12 students from the specialized school to access and deepen their connection to the arts while preparing them for successful participation in community-based art experiences. Ultimately, the content from the 360 library will be shared with schools around the world to help provide guided exposure and expand interest in the arts.
Integrating Emerging Technologies into Teaching: Sharing Tools and Strategies for Using Gamification & Simulations
PRESENTER: Roberta Robin Sullivan
ABSTRACT. This session introduces established and emerging technologies to build learning activities into teaching practices through the State University of New York’s Exploring Emerging Technologies for Lifelong Learning and Success (#EmTech: http://suny.edu/emtech). We will introduce freely available resources to integrate games, AR/VR/XR, 3D objects/environments, and other interactive applications into learning activities and teaching practices.
The EmTech discovery-learning opportunity has two parts; #EmTechMOOC and EmTechWIKI. #EmTechMOOC is a Coursera-based Massive Open Online Course structured around the 4Cs of 21st-century skills. EmTechWIKI is a socially-curated collection of tools, tutorials, and resources. The WIKI is available as a stand-alone resource and it can be used together with #EmTechMOOC.EmTech participants build a personal toolbox to learn how to effectively use web-based technology tools within teaching and learning. EmTech provides highly-interactive professional development for campuses, individual faculty, and anyone interested in keeping pace with the continual evolution of technology.
We will consider how the affordances of simulations add value to today’s learning landscape to shift time and space to create authentic learning experiences and to engage and motivate learners. Simulated environments using new genres of technology allow viewers to make choices and affect outcomes. Simulations are no longer restricted only to those with access to expensive virtual labs.
We will also consider how gamification can motivate students. We will explore a variety of gamification tools to add elements such as story and narrative, choice and control, Immediate feedback, collaboration, scaffolded learning, mastery, leveling up, and community.
Truth with Hope: Teaching the SDGs through Immersive Learning
PRESENTER: Nicole Lamoureux
ABSTRACT. Earth and its inhabitants are on a crash course to destruction. To remedy this trajectory, the United Nations created 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which implore both developed and developing countries to join together and tackle climate change, preserve our oceans and forests, end poverty, and improve health, education, and inequality . Teaching these complex issues to students can be a daunting task. This session will present two case studies to explore how immersive learning environments can help students develop critical thinking skills, empathy, and a sense of agency concerning the SDGs. We will cover best practices for designing and integrating immersive learning environments into existing curriculum and strategies for assessing student learning. The social, pedagogical, and ethical challenges will be discussed. Our goal is to ignite thought on how immersive learning can accelerate progress toward the SDGs and inspire students to take action to create a more sustainable world.
Diving into SDG 14, Life Below Water: A VR Experience for Deeper Understanding
PRESENTER: Kristin Moskalyk
ABSTRACT. The United Nations' Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14: Life Below Water aims to conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas, and marine resources for sustainable development. However, the complexity and vastness of the ocean can make it difficult for students to fully understand and care about marine conservation and the sustainable use of ocean resources. We propose using FrameVR to design an immersive learning environment that promotes deeper engagement with SDG 14 by providing students with an interactive opportunity to explore the current state of the ocean and the effects of human activities on marine life. One of the key features is integrating real-world data from carefully curated and reputable educational media to ground the learning, including infographics, Tik Tok and YouTube videos, images, audio lessons, personal stories, articles, and learning games. A social component allows students to work together in developing solutions to the challenges they encounter in the FrameVR experience. By creating an environment that will enable them to explore, learn, and collaborate with peers, we aim to enhance student awareness, engagement, empathy, and motivation to take action on SDG 14.
Enhancing Online Graduate Education Experience Using Immersive Learning Environments
ABSTRACT. Online education has become very popular after the COVID-19 pandemic, and many universities deliver graduate programs online to students from different locations worldwide. Online education provides several advantages and allows graduate students to learn anywhere, anytime, with reduced financial costs. However, challenges have been identified with online education, such as fewer opportunities for social interaction (e.g., collaborative learning, student-faculty interaction, active teaching practices, and quality discussions with peers). Lack of meaningful engagement can lead to higher dropout rates due to reduced motivation and increased distance between students, institutions, and instructors. This presentation will analyze how virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) can provide immersive experiences that enhance graduate student learning by incorporating active engagement, social interaction, and other elements often lacking in online learning environments.
Metaverse Biomes for TESOL - Towards a New Immersive Framework
PRESENTER: Helena Galani
ABSTRACT. This presentation focuses on the methodologies involved for language teaching in different destinations in the Metaverse. Owing to the breakthrough of VR (virtual reality), AR (augmented reality), AI (artificial intelligence), the metaverse with its immersive features, multisensory interactions and integrated technologies can effectively serve as the new educational biome.
On exploring the educational Framework of the metaverse, the Presenters reflect on their recent teaching experiences in-world for the promotion of their educational aims to empower the learner and to accelerate the learning process for the purposes of synchronous or asynchronous teaching.
MarineXR: Comparing the Impact of Two Different Ocean AR Experiences on Student Motivation and Engagement
PRESENTER: Paul Mensink
ABSTRACT. Augmented realty is increasingly used as a learning tool in educational settings. There are a wide variety of different AR implementations ranging from simple 3D model viewers to more interactive and dynamic content such as videos and animations. We developed two different types of AR experiences around ocean education: (1) a "tap-to-place" highly-immersive narrated experience that uses the principles of gamification, simulation, role-playing to engage students in scientific concepts around basking sharks and (2) a species learning modules that use realistic and animated 3D representations of marine and freshwater species to teach students about their physiology, morphology and ecology. We conducted a controlled experimental study comparing the impact of each experience on motivation and student engagement. We tested each module in a large, first-year environmental sciences class under remote learning conditions (~200 students). We measured how motivation, engagement, engrossment, and cognitive load differed between the two groups within the context of their attitudes towards science (as assessed by the Modified Attitudes Towards Science instrument). The results of the study and its consequences will be discussed.
Immersive Reality platforms have the power to enhance and extend learning by removing barriers of physical space, improving collaboration, encouraging hands-on learning, and providing individualized learning opportunities for students. In this session, we will demonstrate how we have purposefully used CoSpaces as part of our Interconnected Systems unit which focuses on UN Goal 15 – Life on Land. Students will showcase their finalized Merge Cube and explain how they used augmented reality to bring their ideas to life. In this session we will also be showcasing how students have used FrameVR to experience Meta Verse Scavenger hunts, virtual field trips and present their work in new and innovative ways. In this session, we will demonstrate how immersive technologies enhance student engagement, increase collaboration and develop greater accessibility.
Personalising and Transforming Learning with Immersive Technologies
ABSTRACT. Immersive Reality platforms have the power to enhance and extend learning by removing barriers of physical space, improving collaboration, encouraging hands-on learning, and providing individualized learning opportunities for students. In this session, we will demonstrate how we have purposefully used CoSpaces as part of our Interconnected Systems unit which focuses on UN Goal 15 – Life on Land. Students will showcase their finalized Merge Cube and explain how they used augmented reality to bring their ideas to life. In this session, we will also be showcasing how students have used FrameVR to experience Meta Verse Scavenger hunts, virtual field trips and present their work in new and innovative ways. In this session, we will demonstrate how immersive technologies enhance student engagement, increase collaboration and develop greater accessibility.