Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


A University Study Shows The Future Potential Of AR Learning

As our lives are merging further with the digital world technology such as AR could find itself in our educational spaces more often

Photo Credit: Scott Graham

A new study out of the University of Kansas has found that augmented reality made users feel more engaged with educational content.

As reported by PhysOrg the study looked at how users would engage with a lesson that utilised the power of augmented reality compared to that of traditional video. Virtual reality and AR are becoming increasingly popular in the workplace and learning environments.

We are seeing AR tools being used in the workplace to help train members of staff or act as refresher courses. In addition, it’s also noted that the serious games market, which focuses on educational games, is predicting significant growth with VR playing a large part of those projections.

AR as a learning tool

Going back to the details of the Kansas University study which was led by Mugur Geana, associate professor of health communication and director of KU’s Center for Excellence in Health Communications to underserved populations. During the study, 44 students completed an educational module about the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Half of the class watched a video that shared information on the virus. The second half of the glass interacted with an AR model of the virus by utilising a tablet that showed a 3D model of the virus in the room.

Those using the AR learning tools were able to move around the virtual model and click on the 3D virus. This would then allow the user to receive audio instructions which delivered the same information as the students watching the video-only version.

Geana commented on the new learning technique saying, “We are curious to explore how we can use mixed reality to address teaching and learning. We’re all familiar, especially after COVID, with watching things and learning on a small screen. So, we thought it would be interesting to see how we can move beyond that 2D environment.”

Results of the study

To help determine the results of the study, students were divided into each group randomly. Those assigned to the video-only study had their eyesight tracked which helped to account for their attention to the video. Those in the AR study were watched via a camera in the room and the one in their tablet. This recorded their interaction with the 3D model for analysis. All participants were then exposed to distracting videos, after this each of the student’s retention of the information was tested and interviews were conducted. 

Participants that used the AR learning method noted that they had a greater sense of engagement with the content, this is largely due to it being a more immersive learning experience. However, objective data showed that those who interacted with the AR model learned less than those who simply watched the video. This may in part be down to the way we are used to learning through the use of books or videos. Granted a floating 3D virus that you can interact with may be slightly distracting at first. Also, rather than just sitting and taking in information, participants were learning how to interact with AR for the first time. 

These results still show great potential for the use of VR and AR tools for learning in the future. As people become more accustomed to AR technology and its immersive learning nature, it could take education down a path of deeper learning rather than simply sitting and watching a video that throws information at you.

Written By

Paige Cook is a writer with a multi-media background. She has experience covering video games and technology and also has freelance experience in video editing, graphic design, and photography. Paige is a massive fan of the movie industry and loves a good TV show, if she is not watching something interesting then she's probably playing video games or buried in a good book. Her latest addiction is virtual photography and currently spends far too much time taking pretty pictures in games rather than actually finishing them.

You May Also Like

Level Up

Eager to be at the metaverse frontier, but not sure how to get started? As exciting as the idea of a shared digital space...


New blockchain gaming platform based on Unreal Engine 5.


The record for the most expensive land sale in the metaverse has just been raised


Voice suppression tech prevents the real world from overhearing your in-metaverse conversations


Subscribe to the future