Academic journal article T H E Journal (Technological Horizons In Education)

The Nascence of AR & VR in American Education

Academic journal article T H E Journal (Technological Horizons In Education)

The Nascence of AR & VR in American Education

Article excerpt

IT'S STRANGE TO SEE THE WAY educators react to new technologies --so often with apprehension rather than wonder at the potential the technology offers for bringing new and creative learning experiences to students. It seems to me many see a new technology as a threat to the proper order of things rather than just a chance to roll out a new type of learning activity and give students a chance to experience the subject matter at hand in a different and more engaging way.

Augmented and virtual reality (AR and VR) are two such nascent technologies at the crossroads right now.

VR has an obvious wow factor that has made it a bit more of a darling with educators and students. As we see in the first data from the recently completed 2016 Speak Up Survey (page 34), nearly half--47 percent--of middle school students would include virtual reality experiences and hardware in their "ultimate school." A smaller but still substantial 33 percent of high school students want virtual reality experiences and hardware in their ultimate school. This is based on a survey of 435,510 K-12 students completed in January 2017.

In the same survey involving 38,512 teachers, 4,592 administrators and 29,670 parents, 29 percent of principals and 23 percent of teachers expressed enthusiasm for VR by including it in their ultimate school. Parents could seem to care less, with just 17 percent expressing support.

These numbers aren't too surprising. What's strange though is that VR is so far ahead of AR with students and educators. …

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