Responses to Jisc’s inaugural survey into uses of augmented reality and virtual reality in tertiary education, published today (pdf), provide much food for thought.
In working to shape a technology-enhanced vision for Education 4.0, Jisc is always looking for ways to collaborate with members, listen to their experiences, and learn from their ideas. It’s in this spirit that we launched our survey into the use of immersive technologies in teaching and learning.
Experiences and aspirations
More than 100 lecturers, researchers and learning technologists at universities and colleges responded to what we believe is the first survey of its kind in the UK. The results offer powerful insights into the value of immersive tech.
The findings highlight an appetite for augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). In fact, 82% of all respondents said they were very interested in their institution making more use of AR and VR technologies in future (rated 4 or 5 on a scale of 1 to 5).
The key benefits of these new technologies are described as the immersive and engaging learning experience (32% of respondents), and the opportunities for situated and experiential learning (28% of respondents). Meanwhile, 8% said using AR and VR improves learning outcomes.
Working towards Education 4.0
Asked to specify the most important action Jisc can take to support organisations’ use of immersive technology, respondents suggested showcasing best practice, supporting a reduction in costs, providing advice and guidance, and offering community/peer support.
I’m proud to say we have already begun this work by introducing new training opportunities, developing case studies with institutions at the leading edge of practice, and creating opportunities for interested parties to meet in person. Looking ahead, we hope to help our members embed immersive technologies in teaching and learning practice. Our AR/VR project will pilot a range of new Jisc services, such as 3D scanning, providing access to equipment and expertise.
We’re grateful to everyone who took the time to respond to this survey, and to our friends at the Universities and Colleges Information Services Association (UCISA), the Association for Learning Technology (ALT) and the Heads of eLearning Forum for supporting this work.
By collaborating and acting on feedback from members, we hope to build on this survey to continue to support educators as they embrace the possibilities of Education 4.0.