Enriched realities

It is increasingly common to enrich reality with the use of technology, and several types of reality can be blended. When learners cannot be in the same place at the same time, augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) can be used to make some exciting and memorable shared experiences possible. When an AR application is used, it overlays information on our surroundings or objects around us, while VR provides a three-dimensional environment with which learners can interact. Such enriched realities extend what is possible in education and training and provide dynamic, new experiences that engage learners immediately. They also open up opportunities that are not available in the classroom, such as exploring places it would be difficult, dangerous or impossible to visit for a learner — the surface of Mars or the inside of a volcano, for example. With AR and VR, students can interact and work together, manipulating virtual objects and moving around the setting together. These ways of engaging can support them in understanding concepts, practising skills and performing various tasks or procedures. Enriched realities are now used in many contexts including clinical and medical settings, safety training and teacher training.

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