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Virtual Reality: Cool Factor vs. Practicality

by Blake Montgomery

EdSurge

Article excerpt

Virtual Reality at SXSWedu: Hopeful Forecasts and the British Museum’s Lessons

Much of the press and several of the SXSWedu panels on virtual reality talked excitedly about where the medium and technology will be, rather than where it currently is. A substantial conversation can’t subsist on predictions alone, though.

Our take

Virtual Reality + Pedagogy: A Must-Have

There’s certainly promise in education for the use of virtual reality, but the landscape is still uncertain with many potentially promising options still awaiting release. What should you be doing now to think strategically about how virtual reality might play a role in your curriculum?

A wide range of virtual technology tools are poised to enter the market soon—from Google’s Cardboard to Microsoft’s Hololens, and more. The space wasn’t ignored by speakers at SXSW where conversations about the potential of virtual reality were pervasive. It’s important, though, speakers noted, to move beyond the “wow” factor to consider practical functionality. Virtual field trips are one obvious example that holds promise, but others are likely to emerge. The key point, though, is to ensure that any of these applications are firmly tied to sound pedagogy.

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