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Augmented Reality, Mixed Reality and Virtual Reality

Integrating Technology Colleagues,

Have you been experimenting with -- or perhaps regularly using -- virtual reality or augmented reality with adult learners?

Do you wonder what these terms mean, and how they might be used?

This is a new discussion that, as the use of these increases in our field, should grow richer over time.

To get us started, here are some definitions -- from an August 2017 Discovery Education blog article by classroom technology guru Kathy Schrock: Augmented reality in the classroom

  • Augmented reality (AR) is a technology that layers computer-generated enhancements on top of an existing reality in order to make it more meaningful through the ability to interact with it.
  • Virtual reality (VR) is an artificial, computer-generated simulation or re-creation of a real life environment…It immerses the users by making them feel like they are experiencing the simulated reality firsthand, primarily by stimulating their vision and hearing.
  • Mixed Reality (MR) combines some of the aspects of both VR and AR.

Take a look at the blog article, especially if these "realities" are new to you.

If you have recommendations of other articles, books, videos, or web pages about education uses of  AR, VR or MR that we should look at, please let us know and, if you can, provide links.

David J. Rosen




Alison Ascher Webber's picture

Hi David, I found this Harvard Business Review article, "Why Every Organization Needs an Augmented Reality Strategy" illuminating on how augmented reality is and will increasingly be used in workforce training. Be sure to watch the video and download and try to app under the blue heading "Explore Augmented Reality". It shows how the machines/appliances or anything we manipulate in the future will be able to train us directly through augmented reality, and how we won't have to read instructions on a page and then when we look up, figure out how translate that to what we're working on. It will all be combined through augmented reality. Give it a look and let me know what you think! Alison

David J. Rosen's picture

Hello Integrating Technology colleagues,

Please post questions, links to articles, and examples of using Virtual Reality (VR) applications in adult basic skills education, including adult ESL/ESOL) or post other information that you find of interest, or potentially useful to your colleagues who are interested in knowing how VR might help their adult learners.

Here's one example: yesterday I was talking with an adult basic skills mathematics teacher in Illinois, and I asked if he would find virtual reality useful. He suggested that if students had access to (perhaps even to the inexpensive Google Cardboard) sets of VR goggles and smartphones -- many students now have smartphones -- he might be able to use Virtual Reality for teaching math 3D shapes. Is anyone doing that now, or interested in exploring that?

What are your experiences using -- or questions about -- VR for the adult basic skills classroom ?

David J. Rosen, Moderator

LINCS CoP Integrating Technology group