Conventional education as we know is quickly becoming a relic of the past. As technology advances, they are being more digitized. EdTech (education technology) is predicted to reach $680.1 billion by 2027, with a 17.9 percent annual growth rate. Augmented reality is a clear standout when it comes to educational technology advancements. An abundance of chances for academic institutions and enterprises will open up as the value of AR in tech is estimated to reach $5.3 billion by 2023.
To put it simply, what virtual and augmented reality is?
Let’s recap quickly what augmented reality (AR) is before we get into the intricacies of its usage in education.
We may infer that the technology enhances our actual-world experience in light of its name. Usually, on a smartphone screen, it achieves this by superimposing virtual items on top of the accurate picture. Microsoft Hololens is required for specific sophisticated augmented reality applications.
In most cases, augmented reality items are either 3D models or the result of processing several pictures of a real thing. Apps that employ augmented reality use specific markers, such as QR codes, geolocation data, or object recognition to put virtual stuff on the screen.
It’s up to the developer of an augmented reality software whether the user chooses to see or interact with the virtual things.
In contrast to VR, most AR apps operate on smartphones or tablets and don’t need any additional hardware. As a result, the educational sector may make use of the adaptability of augmented reality technology.
Some of the most popular educational applications feature printable markers that may be used in the classroom by instructors themselves. When the youngsters take a picture of the characteristics with their smartphones, something unexpected happens!
The advantages and disadvantages of educational and training applications of augmented reality
Augmented reality may be used for a variety of applications in education. It facilitates the acquisition, processing, and retention of knowledge by pupils. AR also improves the quality of education by making it more exciting and enjoyable for students.
Although it may be utilized at all stages of education, from preschool to college or even at work, it is not restricted to a specific age group or educational level.
Education: The advantages of using augmented reality
- Learner-friendly resources anywhere, at any moment
Textbooks, physical prototypes, and other printed materials might be replaced with augmented reality-enabled alternatives in the near future. It is a convenient and cost-effective way to study. The consequence is a more accessible and transportable education.
- No need for any particular equipment.
In contrast to virtual reality, no costly gear is required for augmented reality. Due to the high percentage of smartphone ownership among adolescents (73%), the bulk of the intended audience will have fast access to augmented reality applications.
- Increased interest and involvement of students
Students may benefit significantly from interactive, gamified AR education.
- Improved ability to work with others
Using augmented reality applications in the classroom may provide variety and excitement to otherwise dull lessons. Teamwork abilities may be improved via the use of interactive classes in which all students are actively participating in the learning process.
- Learning that is both more rapid and more efficient
Visualization and complete absorption in the subject matter help pupils get more excellent outcomes using AR in education. Isn’t a picture worth a thousand words? As a result, instead of reading about a subject from a textbook, students may experience it in action.
- In-the-trenches training
Additionally, AR may be a terrific tool for professional training and educational purposes. For example, a job’s practical abilities might be honed by accurately re-creating the circumstances in the field.
- Training for a safe and effective workplace
If you can rehearse heart surgery or space shuttle operations without endangering other people or causing expenditure of millions of dollars, that would be amazing. With AR, it’s doable.
- This rule covers all levels of education and training
It doesn’t matter if AR is being used in kindergarten or for on-the-job training; the possibilities are endless with this technology.
Educational issues raised by the use of augmented reality
It’s essential to keep in mind the following risks while using augmented reality in educational technology:
- A lack of required education
Teachers who lack the proper training may find it challenging to use these new technologies in the classroom. When it comes to using augmented reality applications in the school, only the most open-minded instructors and educational institutions are willing to experiment.
- Hardware dependency is a problem.
This resource base is necessary for incorporating augmented reality into the classroom. For example, not all pupils have smartphones that can run AR apps.
- Problems with content portability
You need to ensure that the AR software you create is compatible with all platforms and devices. Even if it were feasible, the quality of AR material would vary greatly depending on the device being used.
How augmented reality works in the classroom
Extended Reality (XR) encompasses AR as well as virtual reality (VR) and mixed reality (MR). Text, music, visuals, and other multimedia are all part of the augmented reality experience. By overlaying digital material on top of the graphics of the actual world, AR provides us with an enhanced depiction of our immediate environment.
In some instances, the gear required for AR learning is quite simple, such as a smartphone camera to play the PokemonGo game. AR glasses like Google Glass, Dream Glass, and Vuzix Blade, on the other hand, are arguably more convenient for bringing AR to customers because of the convenience of their hardware.
However, the AR content is created by AR software, which is still primarily developed for a single AR-hardware manufacturer and generally offered in conjunction with an AR hardware kit. Education and training may benefit significantly from the usage of augmented reality, which can be used in a variety of ways.
Examples and use cases of augmented reality in educational settings.
AR technology is more than just a game of Pokemon Go, despite the widespread perception that this is all it does. Augmented reality in the classroom has never looked better than it does in these real-life case studies.
- Distance education may benefit from augmented reality
Due to the epidemic, distant learning has been more popular in recent years. After the current situation has stabilized, online education will undoubtedly continue to be utilized across the globe for these and other reasons. Online learning may be made more accessible by using augmented reality apps. Students and professors can communicate in real-time while receiving the information they need.
Distance-learning students don’t necessarily require an instructor to help them understand the content. With the right software, you can learn all you need to know about a particular subject, from theory to practice, all in one place. As a result, students are able to study at their own pace and at a place that is most convenient for them.
- In the classroom, augmented reality
Augmented reality solutions for universities may be pretty beneficial, regardless of whether students are interested in studying humanities or technology. Medical students, for example, may use an AR app to study anatomy and practice inspecting the actual body. As a result, many colleges and institutions are already using augmented reality to educate students in anything from engineering and arithmetic to design and astronomy.
Students benefit from augmented reality by having a more enjoyable and secure learning experience. Experiments like experimenting with various chemical mixtures and observing what happens may be carried out without any damage to students or university property, thanks to the new technology. Students may also use AR apps to aid them with their creative endeavours in college and organize campus events.
- Children’s augmented reality software
The fact that youngsters are keen adopters of cutting-edge technology like AR is well-known. Apps for children are some of the most innovative in the field of augmented reality education. AR software developers are taking cues from the success of PokemonGo to create products that will transform the way youngsters read books, look at art and posters, study science, and do experiments in the lab.
Even young children may learn how to write using NarratorAR, an educational app for children aged 3–5. The software adds exciting effects to the letters they write, making handwriting a very engaging activity.
- Learning via the use of augmented reality
Usage of augmented reality applications in the classroom is the most common use of the technology. The instructor may use them to explain a topic, provide pupils with a visual picture of the information, and help them practice their understanding.
As a result, you can find an AR app for practically any topic, from chemistry to mathematics to zoology to grammar.
- Studying from home is a growing trend
Students may benefit from augmented reality even when they aren’t in the classroom. Furthermore, AR-assisted instructional resources may make online and remote learning more convenient and practical.
As an example, Mondly, a language-learning software, has recently included an AR-based virtual instructor to help users practice their abilities as if they were in real-life scenarios.
- In education, marketing
Even in the realm of education, the use of augmented reality (AR) technology has enormous promise for marketing and advertising. AR tours are already being used by a number of institutions in the United States to boost enrollment and aid new students in navigating the campus.
When it comes to augmented reality, the Community College of Beaver County, Pennsylvania, is using technology to present a wide range of multimedia material. An entertaining and educational approach to getting to know the campus is provided via the app. The software also includes gamification features to enhance the user experience.
- Museums may benefit from augmented reality
Augmented reality (AR) is increasingly being employed to improve the museum visit for today’s interactive audience. Museums may increase visitors’ interest in artistic or cultural heritage by adding AR content to things like sculptures and paintings, historical relics, papers, and architectural landmarks.
AR material may be quickly accessed using a smartphone camera, which is a crucial aspect of AR applications for museums. If you’re at France’s Jardin Botanique Grand Nancy, you can download a name-brand AR software for both Android and iOS. Digital creatures that smoothly blend into the botanical garden’s surroundings may be seen throughout the AR-enhanced tour. An accompanying audio track is provided for each of the digital animations. On top of that, there are more than 20 games for both children and adults to play.
- Using augmented reality (AR) in professional training
Organizations in both the business and government sectors must educate and re-educate their staff on a regular basis since the shelf-life of a specific professional skill is around five years nowadays. Here are some examples of how organizations across a wide range of sectors are using augmented reality to enhance employee on-the-job training.
- Learning about healthcare via the use of virtual reality
Accuracy is critical in the medical field since errors may severely affect patients’ health and well-being. Augmented reality in medical education is often used to assist students in learning via interactive visual representations, constructing simulations and teaching medical students, or performing surgery or other medical operations on a virtual patient.
HoloAnatomy, for example, is an award-winning healthcare education software that uses AR simulations to teach medical students about human anatomy.
The use of augmented reality in the space sector
Historically, the space sector has been at the forefront of implementing new technologies and augmented reality is no different in this regard. Using augmented reality, astronauts and engineers may now learn how to accomplish difficult jobs that demand a high level of technical expertise and accuracy. Real-time instructions shown via AR-glasses make it simple to learn how to construct a spaceship, run a space station, and even explore the surface of new planets.
When teaching astronauts how to walk on Mars’ surface using digital visuals, NASA presently uses AR.
Military training using augmented realityFor augmented reality in teaching, the military sector has the best examples. Soldiers are often required to transfer to a specific location for military training, which may take a long time and be costly. In a similar way to how troops are needed to function, AR may create an experience that closely simulates the battlefield by displaying digital pictures of weapons, adversaries, and vehicles onto AR glasses. The Augmented Immersive Team Trainer (AITT) is a training tool used by the United States Marine Corps.
Manufacturing training may benefit from augmented reality.The manufacturing industry has produced some of the most impressive examples of how augmented reality may be utilized in teaching. Real-time instructions on the AR displays allow personnel to execute their responsibilities without the need for significant preparation and extensive theoretical understanding. In addition, employers may now recruit staff with minimum abilities and experience and teach them on the go using AR instructions. Welding skills are taught via virtual reality simulations at Siemens, for example.
In what ways might augmented reality be used in education?With tech heavyweights like Apple and Google pushing AR ahead, now may be the most significant moment to get on board. When combined with solid hardware, such as the iPhone X, AR-based Edtech applications may be developed successfully. We’d like to provide you with an essential road map for AR development in education based on our years of experience:
- Determine what you want to achieve and who you want to reach. Apps might vary in their functioning based on the age and intent of their users.
- Market research and viability testing can help you get a clearer picture of the idea’s potential.
- Build a Proof of Concept (POC) to evaluate the selected technology stack’s capabilities (it is a recommended approach for innovative technologies, including AR and VR).
- Create an MVP (minimum viable product) — the most basic app version – to test the app’s main features.
- Iterate and test the product till it succeeds. Keep in mind that fresh augmented reality material will need to be added to the app on a regular basis.