When writing this article, I had to turn my phone on silent, put headphones on, and immerse myself in the writing process. Minimizing distractions, coupled with discipline, is the key to getting work done, but how do we create this for learners who may lack the experience or ability to do this? Immersive learning seeks to create an artificial learning environment through exciting visuals and decreased digital distractions. Rather than training-on-the-job, immersive learning takes real-life situations and digitalizes them. This way, learners can practice their skills ahead of time.
Immersive Learning utilizes:
- Virtual Learning Environments (VLE): specifically designed online spaces for teaching and learning
- Textual immersion
Is Immersive Learning Like Experiential Learning?
No, immersive learning uses technology such as virtual reality to envelop the learner. Whereas experiential learning usually involves taking a student physically into a situation that allows them to learn. Due to current pandemic rules, this isn’t currently a possibility for most students. Additionally, there are significant personal costs involved.
Immersive learning does make use of some of the ways experiential learning seeks to teach. Namely though:
- Abstract Conceptualization: understanding the relationships between ideas as a way to further learning and understanding
- Concrete Experience: Having an experience, a virtual one in this case
- These two harmonize and create a full learning experience
What Areas Can This Be Used In?
- Traditional Education: an excellent way of teaching history, art, geography, and zoology
- Skills-Based Training: a way to teach skills in simulated environments and thus ensure the learner’s safety. For example, a construction company can use this to teach emergency protocol without a loss of equipment or danger to human life.
- Medicine: an immersive way to teach anatomy during cadaver shortages and a possibility to teach first-aid in a more life-like environment without human models.
- Art and Design: the opportunity to view important pieces of art history up close without traveling, paying for museum expenses, or not spending as much time studying as the learner would like.
Is Immersive Learning Effective?
Very! We can see its effectiveness in the following ways.
- Realistic simulations help in emergencies.
- Complex concepts can be simpler to understand.
- A more playful way of learning which aids in info recall and knowledge retention.
- Encourages more analytical thinking.
- Room for experimentation and mistakes. For example, a lead generation marketing company may create a virtual environment where telemarketers can try differing techniques without losing customers.
- Reduces the noise of the environment, tech, and other students. Imagine living in a world free from distraction. Put your headset on and complete the learning you need without your boss pinging you to remind you that report is due at 6!
- Heightened focus: there is no room for starting and stopping. Once a learner is immersed, they are more likely to finish the entire chapter.
- Emotional: if a learner is given a chance to connect to a virtual world, they are more likely to stay involved.
- Allows for role-playing exercises, exploration of the virtual space, and discussions.
- Motivation: offering something new and exciting increases the willingness to learn.
- Personalized: immersive learning is super learner-centric and lets them use the program until they feel they get it.
- Encourages mastery rather than “fudging” your way through.
Oculus Quest 2 — All-In-One VR Headset
Oculus Quest 2 is our most advanced all-in-one VR system yet. Explore an expansive library of awe-inspiring games and immersive experiences with unparalleled freedom. Make every move count with blazing-fast performance, next-generation graphics and stunning display. Quest 2 brings more VR to you, and more of you into VR.
Tell Me More About The Technology
Get ready to feel slightly like you’re reading a Young Adult novel set in the not-so-distant future.
Pilots need to learn to land a plane safely in every type of weather condition. We can’t always conjure those up at a moment’s notice, and during the learning process, mistakes could be fatal. This is why plane simulations have been part of flight training since 1910. In 1954 United Airlines purchased four commercial flight simulators for the eye-watering price of $3 million.
Nowadays, every industry, from finance to pharmaceuticals, uses simulations to allow employees to perfect their skills before real-world application.
Virtual Reality (VR)
VR lives in most of our heads as something we can see at Gamescom, reserved for the serious gamer or tech nerd. It can now be used to enhance learning and delivers education in a new way. It gives the feeling of interacting in the physical world through a computer-simulated environment.
Augmented Reality (AR)
AR is similar to VR but using the real world as a jumping-off point. It renders digital images into real-world objects and uses visual, auditory, haptic, somatosensory, and even olfactory (remember how we used to joke about smell-ivision as kids?) modalities.
Mixed Reality (MR)
It really is as simple as it sounds; MR combines the above.
3D Immersive Learning
Immersing the learner through the use of 3D simulations.
Is Immersive Learning for Me?
Immersive learning may not be the only way to train today’s workforce, but if you want to stay ahead of the game in the rapidly changing EdTech environment, it is well worth investing in. Corporate training is made to improve employee performance, and immersive learning technology has proven highly effective. If you are known to create fun for your employees as they learn, they are more likely to stay with your company for longer and rise in their talents.
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