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Augmented and
virtual reality
in higher education

Author: Adam Kimmel

Getting good grades, a component of student performance, is a critical measure of student success for higher education institutions. Virtual reality (VR) applications in higher education are one way some schools are looking to improve student performance. Education administrators and decision-makers want students to retain what they have learned, enabling students to earn good grades. To do that, higher education institutions need to keep pace with advancements in education technology.

Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality applications in higher education could help to transform academics, providing richer, technology-driven learning and teaching experiences. Such applications stand to significantly benefit from the higher speeds, greater bandwidth and lower latency 5G can provide.

VR and AR in higher education: Virtual and augmented reality benefits in education

With an AR smart device, a user can view their real-life surroundings with the additions of projected educational text and relevant content displayed over top. This can provide students with an interactive and unique educational experience. VR, on the other hand, creates an entirely digital environment, an immersive 360-degree experience that lets users feel like they're part of the environment. As a result, in one study, presenting information through VR led to a 9% improvement in retention rate over lecture-based teaching.

VR and AR in higher education can also increase learning efficiency by increasing the student's level of interest in the material. Augmented reality benefits in education come from exposing each student to numerous stimuli, presenting the information in multiple ways.

How can augmented reality be used in higher education?

Schools can achieve augmented reality benefits in education by conducting immersive lessons, and studies suggest that AR and VR can improve engagement with the subject material and potentially increase test scores by allowing students to learn in their preferred method.

Virtual reality applications in higher education can bring new experiences for distance learning compared to written and audio formats by enabling remote students to receive the same lesson presentations that students inside the classroom would receive. In addition, students could have the ability to participate in virtual field trips to destinations like the Great Pyramid or Sydney Opera House without traveling there.

What are the network needs associated with these applications?

The power of 5G can maximize the effectiveness of virtual reality applications in higher education. The intersection of digital and physical space requires low lag and demands speeds as fast as the network can offer. The more realistic the experience, the more the students can immerse themselves in the material.

As more users adopt VR and AR technology, it's critical for virtual reality applications in higher education to roll out smoothly. The right connectivity and managed service partner can provide expert consulting, tools and management strategies to own the performance, letting the school focus on the content.

Learn more about Verizon's 5G education resources.