Educators, researchers and design teams continue to look for innovative solutions for online learning environments to better support lab-based and field-based instruction. The emergence of “affordable” interactive 360º spherical video, virtual reality (VR) technologies and production processes has given way to a new approach for capturing real-world situations, expert demonstrations and delivery of instructional content. With this technology, students can observe and listen to recorded situations while retaining the ability to look around in any direction via mouse, touch pad, mobile device, Google Cardboard or other HMDs (head-mounted displays).
The Instructional Innovations Services group within NC State’s Distance Education and Learning Technology Applications (DELTA) has partnered across campus with departments to continue the land grant mission of transforming educational experiences and developing innovative technologies and pedagogies to solve instructional challenges. We believe 360º video and VR provides interactions and methods for presenting instructional content that differs from traditional video and may result in a measurable impact on student success.
During UNC Cause 2015, Mike Cuales, Cathi Dunnagan, and Bethanne Tobey presented a reflective presentation regarding insights and lessons learned over the course of an academic year as they investigated and tested a broad range of cutting-edge technologies from 360Heros, Freedom360 and GoPro-Kolor. They also shared the ideas and instructional design behind interactive 360° video technologies to support field-based learning experiences. View the presentation >>
The intrigue and popularity of VR continues to gain momentum in mainstream media, but innovative institutions like NC State University are also actively engaged in exploring applications for virtual reality in education, training and experiential learning. The DELTA Team was recently accepted to present at the 2016 SXSWedu Conference in Austin, TX. Their Playground Talk was among a handful of proposals accepted in the first-round of voting.
Example of 360º video used in a Fire Science course:
Join the NC State VR-AR-360Video Community: