In the 21st century, technology is changing the way we live and interact with the world around us. New technologies are emerging everywhere and all the time. And people are finding more applications for it across all sectors. Today, Extended Reality (XR) is one of the latest buzzwords in the tech world. But what does it stand for? And what is in it for the educational sector and students, in particular?
What Is Extended Reality?
We bet that you’ve already heard about Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR). These two fields have been growing rapidly lately. Now, Extended Reality or XR is a catch-all term for these technologies. Simply put, this term is widely used to refer to all kinds of immersive technology, such as AR, VR, and MR (Mixed Reality).
The Role of Extended Reality in Education
As a student, you must know how boring and overwhelming the traditional academic program is. Piles of homework assignments and academic papers rarely keep students motivated to study. On the contrary, young people often seek professional write my papers services to get rid of boring school work and keep their grades high. But XR changes the core aspects of education.
After the introduction of different immersive technologies, their benefits were clearly seen in the educational sector. XR transports users to new digital worlds, providing them with new ways to visualize and interact with data. For example, medical students can enjoy realistic simulations of medical procedures thanks to VR. AR and MR can be used by architecture students to gain hands-on experience in the exploration and manipulation of buildings. And business students can experience simulations of lifelike work environments.
Although these immersive technologies have been around for not so long yet, we can already see their applications in schools and colleges across the world. According to experts, the possibilities of XR in the field of education are pretty much limitless. So we can expect to see even more applications of such technologies in the future.
5 Pros of Extended Reality for Students
Now that you know what XR is and what role it already plays in the education sector, let’s move on to the most exciting part.
So what’s in it for students? Here are the top five perks that such technologies are already bringing to the classroom.
First and foremost, XR is proven to boost learning accessibility. There is no secret that students are diverse. Some of them face different barriers when it comes to acquiring their degrees. But XR can change this.
According to experts, immersive technologies can make learning more accessible than ever. For example, it can provide real-time visual information to students with vision disabilities. Also, it can reduce the cost of high-quality education, thus, also making it more accessible. And there are plenty of other examples.
Another clear benefit of XR in the classroom is that it delivers hands-on experiences to students in a safe environment. Simply put, such technologies enable students to “learn by doing” without having to leave the classroom or do something.
As was mentioned earlier, the practical experiences offered by XR are broad. These include medical, business, architectural, and scientific practices. On top of that, XR can even help learners travel in time to witness major historical events or see distant parts of the world without actually traveling somewhere. Such practical learning has many benefits. Most importantly, it enables young people to study, make mistakes, and learn from them without having to worry about any real-life consequences.
Better Classroom Experience
For years, teachers have been striving for more immersion during their lessons. There are many reasons for that. But, most importantly, studies confirm that immersive classroom activities can drastically change the overall experiences and outcomes of learning. With more immersion, students get more interested in studying, and their motivation is boosts. Respectively, their learning outcomes improve as well.
Moreover, studies show that retention rates are much higher for learners who learn through immersive classroom activities. That is, XR can make learning more immersive, fun, and beneficial for everyone.
Earlier, we told you that XR makes lessons more engaging and fun for students, thus, helping them achieve greater success. That’s true; engaging youth in the process can secure better learning outcomes for them. But that’s not all.
According to a Stanford University and Technical University Denmark study, XR technology in the classroom boosts students’ memory retention rates by 76% compared to other traditional teaching approaches. This phenomenon is rather easy to explain. As you should already know, different people have different learning styles. Some learn visually, whereas others do it through reading. XR engages all existing senses and makes lessons more immersive. Thus, it can satisfy all existing learning styles and help everyone achieve greater results.
More Opportunities for Socialization and Collaboration
According to many specialists, social and collaboration skills are among the most crucial ones in today’s world. Nevertheless, many classroom activities still don’t provide enough opportunities to develop these skills. Most often, especially during digital learning experiences, students either handle tasks on their own or can collaborate with one or a few classmates. However, XR expands opportunities.
With the help of XR, learners can socialize and collaborate with their peers from all over the world. They can interact through virtual avatars, conferences, and other events. As a result, they meet new people, acknowledge diversity, and also hone their social and collaboration skills.
The Bottom Line
Lately, there has been a lot of buzz around extended reality. Experts were discovering its possible applications in different sectors. And education isn’t an exception.
This term may sound new to many of you. But now, you know that XR is just a catch-all term for all immersive technologies that we all know, such as VR and AR. After reading this article, you will know about the role of XR in education and the benefits it offers to students. And we can’t wait to see what other applications of this technology will be discovered in the future.