Last week, we invited Jamie Justice, Director of US Education and Global Innovation to speak about AR/VR related technological developments that have contributed greatly to the classroom experience. This week, he shares the guiding principles and frameworks for a seamless and effective classroom transition.
Now that the capacity is here to access, use, and share virtual content, what do educators need to think about in order to fully benefit from using AVR into their classrooms? The main thing is to have a strategic plan of where, when, and how to best utilize these powerful tools. AVR is not the be all or the end all of a lesson, but it is a powerful tool that can be used to better engage students and facilitate learning at higher levels.
Thinking about the generations of learners and the new access provided by 5G, AI, AVR, content and other factors, what is different about your students in this visual revolution. The big question now, is who are your learners and what do they need to know and be able to do? Each classroom teacher or faculty member has a good awareness of their student’s needs and learning styles. The challenge of how to better engage and facilitate learning is often more complicated as a result of the enormous amount of distractions that compete for learners’ attention. AVR provides an avenue to capitalize, on those distractions to better engage learners, when they are and where they are. Alternatively, AVR applications can provide new presentation formats to better illustrate and inform learners in more engaging and effective ways. The possibilities are endless.
Thinking differently about learning and teaching
What are the biggest challenges to meeting learner needs in the advent of this visual revolution? How could you use AVR to meet some of these challenges? Where do you begin to infuse AVR into the curriculum? There are several ways to begin. The first step is to critically analyze the current learning environment to identify specific learning needs.
The emergence of new platforms and visual learning opportunities, enables educators to begin thinking differently about teaching and learning. Wouldn’t it be great if AVR could be used to…..
- Immerse students in interactive and engaging learning activities
- Enable students to have access to materials, equipment, processes or procedures that are not replicable in the classroom
- Facilitate collaborative learning
- Reinforce instruction with hands-on, multi-modal activities designed to increase critical thinking and problem-solving skills
How can you use AVR to change instruction? How do you identify areas of need that AVR could help better engage and motivate learners? There are multiple ways that AVR can be used to help improve student learning. The challenge is clearly identifying those areas of need and those places where AVR really brings value to the learning experience. In short, AVR is a means to an end, not the be all or end all solution. If it fits, it fits, don’t force it because we have cool tools.
Eliminating the one size fits all mindset will enable you to create applications specific to a given problem or need. EON Creator AVR allows you to develop these custom applications that specifically meet learner outcomes that are crosswalked and aligned with curriculum and instruction.
How do you begin to identify and align AVR content to instruction? How do you identify AVR applications or identify a new way of doing things? EON AVR ThinkShops are innovation talent development programs that help participants begin to think differently about challenges.
Think differently about ways to approach content delivery in a different context of modalities such as:
- Immersive, engaging virtual reality experiences that provide exploration in a safe environment.
- Access to complex and expensive locations, machines, or devices through virtual models or 360 Images or video experiences.
- Instructor designed learning experiences, created to match specific learning targets using AVR lessons.
- Facilitated, digital learning experiences for all students, individuals, or teams.
- Applications that can be used whenever or wherever students may be with integrated usage analytics.
- Interactive 3D applications on mobile devices
The EON AVR ThinkShops are designed around an innovation framework, that provides a process for identifying both overall challenges and creating ideas for content creation.
The Innovation Framework is a process that allows you to identify challenges, clearly define the challenge, establish a vision based on the current and future state of the challenge. Next, the framework guides you through idea generation, idea refinement, elaboration of ideas and lastly implementation of a new way of teaching using AVR as a resource.
Once you have identified those key areas where AVR could be utilized, you next need to think about what these applications would look like. There are six key constructs for designing an AVR application as shown below:
The first two constructs are centered around curriculum alignment. The areas of Analysis and Content Identification are those key constructs that must occur before integrating AVR in the curriculum. These constructs focus on the “what and where” for AVR integration.
The next two constructs are focused on the instructional design aspect of curriculum planning. These constructs are essential in order to design lessons based on what learners need to know and be able to do as a result of using the AVR app. These focus on the “why and when” aspects of curriculum design and planning.
The last two constructs are focused on application deployment. This phase of integration is a focus on actual application creation and deployment using the AVR Platform. This is where digital assets are created, located, or are purchased to create applications that can be launched in AR, VR, or VR in head mount displays. This is also where you will manage students, assign lessons, and monitor overall usage and progress. The AVR Platform enables and empowers you to create lessons, share them, and play them in a variety of ways in real time.
Lastly, in order to be more strategic with implementing AVR into the instructional program you need to initiate a change management strategy to help establish buy in from all stakeholder groups. There are 4 steps required to initiate change:
- Realize – In order to begin a change process, you first need to realize that the current methods may not be working or could be improved. Once you realize that change is warranted you move to the next step…
- Inclination – It’s not enough to just realize that change is necessary, you must also muster up the inclination to do something about it. This is where you begin working with stakeholders to identify those challenges or opportunities that could benefit from AVR, in this case, as a change agent. Once this buyin is established you move on to the next step…
- Application – Once you have the realization and inclination to move forward, you will apply resources, faculty, instructional designers and application development tools to begin designing and using AVR. Once you have this step underway you move to the next step…
- Implementation – This is where you begin using applications with students, monitor success, adapt and redeploy as needed and continue growing the approach and numbers of applications used. Assess the outcomes and continue adjusting as needed.
As you implement AVR into the curriculum there are a few more points to consider and implement as you begin this journey. The following points will also guide you:
- Identify Areas of Need – Situation Analysis
- Define the current state and where you strive to be
- Implement, Adapt, Refine, Deploy
- Think Differently – Change Perspectives
- Take Risks
- Engage Learners
- Be Amazed
Augmented and virtual reality always has its own “wow” factor and there are endless possibilities for deployment and using it successfully. You have to think differently about how information is shared, have a change strategy in mind and lastly carefully plan on what you want to accomplish using AVR as the powerful resource it can be.
Educators must embrace this opportunity to engage and facilitate these immersive learning experiences, in order to better prepare learners for a different future. An opportunity for educators to connect with students in new ways beyond traditional classroom methods.
Opportunities to create and deploy digital assets in VR, AR, and MR are finally easy to provide for learners on a wide variety of visual experiences. As things progress, 5G access, new displays and modalities such as markerless AR and other overlays are perfected, new ways to share digital assets, lessons and courses will become more prevalent unleashing the full promise and potential of augmented and virtual reality to change education in unforeseen ways.
Effecting change in the advent of the visual revolution will occur as a result of new advancements that are happening now. Changes such as 5G, AI, AR, VR, MR, XR, new displays, new content tools and platforms, better smart devices, and better access will change the way we work, learn and play. Going forward we will transition from random acts of progress in education to a period of strategic applications that change educational practice.
About Jamie Justice
Jamie is a multi-talented seasoned innovator and change leader in education, business, and his private life. He has a long list of accomplishments and unique approaches to solving problems, managing projects and designing new solutions to address a variety of challenges. He has been in and around education for over 30 years, first as a high school teacher and then with the Kentucky Dept of Education as a state consultant for career and technical education programs and initiatives. Ultimately, he spent the remainder of his formal education career with the Kentucky Community and Technical College System. EON Reality was lucky enough to talk him out of retirement and Jamie has been an invaluable asset in helping us craft solutions for education.