Virtual reality takes online education to new heights

Aug. 27, 2018

The University at Buffalo team is working to deliver virtual reality on a massive scale that includes built-in feedback for students and faculty.

By Cory Nealon for the University at Buffalo

Anyone with an internet connection can attend college from home. Yet a common complaint about online learning is that it lacks the feel of a physical classroom.

That’s starting to change.

The University at Buffalo and its partners recently demonstrated how to integrate virtual reality (VR) into a massive open online course (MOOC) focusing on collaborative robot safety.

Organizers say the successful experiment — launched in July at the Serious Play conference in Buffalo using the Open edX platform — could be a blueprint for colleges and universities looking to implement VR and other innovations into their online course offerings.

“Virtual reality is rapidly advancing, enabling us to develop computer-generated learning environments that closely mimic the real world. In turn, students can interact with these environments in real-time, offering a richer educational experience,” says Timothy Leyh, executive director of The Center for Industrial Effectiveness (TCIE) at UB, which spearheaded the effort.

To learn more, read "MOOC, served with a side of virtual reality" from the University at Buffalo.

About the Author

Alexis Gajewski | Senior Content Strategist

Alexis Gajewski has over 15 years of experience in the maintenance, reliability, operations, and manufacturing space. She joined Plant Services in 2008 and works to bring readers the news, insight, and information they need to make the right decisions for their plants. Alexis also authors “The Lighter Side of Manufacturing,” a blog that highlights the fun and innovative advances in the industrial sector. 

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