New, potentially game-changing devices come onto the scene while others are discontinued.11 The standard higher ed budget cycle and the time frame of faculty course planning can make it difficult to project technology needs even a semester or two ahead. Log in or create an EDUCAUSE profile to manage your subscriptions. XR encompasses virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality based experiences, in this case focused on learning and research uses. Creating mechanisms for communities of interest to collaborate while remote from each other is fundamental to the way institutions of higher ed operate. The XR Summit took place in January 2020 — a few days before the first recorded case of COVID-19 outside of China, and certainly before most people in the US were aware of it. Extended reality is the latest term to be added to our lexicon and,for now, serves as an umbrella term for the other three. XR encompasses virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and mixed reality. In this article, we would like to review the fundamentals of each technology, the meaning of Mixed Reality and what we can expect from Extended Reality. Google Cardboard or other inexpensive, smartphone-based XR might be the future of this technology for educational and other group uses. It then becomes possible both to backfill those needs with a range of possible technologies and to make decisions about how to backfill as late as possible, to allow for technological changes. Technologies that enable distance learning are critical to the survival of institutions of higher education. Institutions should start by developing pilot projects, small-scale uses of XR in specific courses and research projects, and other such use cases. Institutions should make it possible for students to drive XR on campus,10 and at several institutions, students have independently developed projects in XR. Augmented reality in the education sector is growing, and as it does, it is important to look how the potential of AR can be harnessed in the classroom. If one or more platforms emerge as the choice for developing XR educational resources, that would go a long way to addressing the lack of educational resources by making it possible for more instructors to develop their own. The ability to mirror real-life situations gives extended reality the benefit of exceeding any possible limit. Furthermore, campus deployment of XR technology in a classroom or in a lab requires an enterprise license. Attendees were mostly representatives of the institutions that participated in the HP/EDUCAUSE Campus of the Future research project. Augmented Reality (AR): Real World + Digital Components, Mixed Reality (MR): Real World + Digital Components + Interactions, Virtual Reality (VR): In a Simulated Environment. Reality gets quite blurred once you enter eXtended Reality (XR). Before allocating resources to support XR initiatives on campus, campus leadership will want to see evidence of factors such as increased student engagement and greater achievement of learning outcomes. Little did we know that reality would make that vision more important than ever. If it's difficult to collaborate across units within a single institution, it's often even more difficult to collaborate across institutions. XR challenges the traditional organizational models that exist in higher ed, and varying organizational structures and leadership will necessitate different strategies to foster cross-campus collaboration. Capabilities of Augmented Reality technology may make classes more engaging and information more apprehendable. A VR simulation of an archaeological site might benefit from a narrative presentation to aid the user's understanding of the development of the site over time, thus bringing the skills of journalism and storytelling into history. We are the Extended Reality Education (EdxR), a growing network of academics and practitioners dedicated to critically interrogating the impact and implications digital, social and transformational technologies hold for how we work, learn and live. For this kind of development to happen, institutions need to provide students with easy access to XR technology, including hardware such as VR headsets and computers capable of sophisticated graphics rendering, and software such as development platforms. While AR is primarily focused in the gaming industry (at the moment) statistics show that consumers value AR products 33% higher than non-augmented reality products and that students are naturally entranced by how AR can change the … ». In the changed circumstances that colleges and universities face today, XR can play an even more significant role. Every VR and AR development platform has its own repository, and although some of the apps in those repositories have educational value, they are in the minority. These individuals and institutions have been involved with XR deployment on campus for as long as anyone and longer than most—at least one year and as much as three. The interdisciplinary nature of XR technology, one of its greatest opportunities, is also one of its greatest challenges. Extended Reality: changing the face of learning, teaching, and research. Building community must therefore include creating mechanisms for the XR community to collaborate on projects and leverage resources across organizations. The Emerging Technologies Consortium at Columbia University and the XReality Center at The New School provide good examples of campus units that have taken on this advocacy role. Students in a film course can evoke new emotions in an Orson Welles classic by virtually changing the camera angles in a dramatic scene. In the COVID-19 world, the ability and the willingness to gather side-by-side become uncertain. In the educational setting, extended reality allows students to learn in ways they’ve never been able to before. Extended reality opens new avenues for training and education. As we've rediscovered these past few months, merely being in a room with colleagues is enjoyable for its own sake. Communicating the value of XR for teaching and learning, showcasing successful use cases and evidence of impact, and providing access and space for users to use the technology are necessary steps in any action plan for promoting widespread adoption of XR. Extended reality (XR) combines augmented reality, virtual reality, and mixed reality―meaning that nearly all forms of technologically-supplemented reality fall under the XR umbrella. We’re working to figure out what exactly this means. Given the long history of XR, why are we now seeing more institutions leading the work to introduce XR on campus? In the short amount of time since COVID-19 closed campuses and moved teaching and learning entirely online, talk of "a new normal" has become commonplace. No one is going to want to put on a headset that someone else just took off or share other hardware. Others might want to see data on the efficacy of XR for learning and evidence of its impact. Some instructors will need to see XR in use or use it themselves before they can imagine how they might use it for their own courses. Even in such an environment, though, institutions of higher ed can still play a critical role as a convener and community-builder. The Miami Beach Urban Studios, within the Florida International University College of Communication, Architecture + The Arts, is a 16,000-square-foot makerspace-like facility containing a wide range of equipment from computers and software to 3D printers and scanners to laser cutters, all of which is accessible to all members of the FIU campus community and to the local Miami Beach community. Emblematic, a company founded by Nonny de la Peña and Jamie Pallot, has made considerable progress toward solving this problem, having developed an XR platform that is both web-based and based on open standards. It could be teaching kindergarteners about the solar system, or showing high school students human anatomy, all the way up to preparing medical students to perform life-saving surgical operations. The term XR encompass all the flavors of extending reality using technology. Written by Laurel Thomas, Michigan News. Sign up for free EDUCAUSE Review weekly emails to hear about new content. One of the greatest challenges in deploying XR in education is a simple lack of educational resources. © 2020 Jeffrey Pomerantz and Randall Rode. Extended Reality Technology has already started to revolutionize teaching in the few classrooms that have begun to implement the technology. Because now we have empirical evidence of the efficacy of XR technology for teaching and learning. Jeffrey Pomerantz is Associate Professor of Practice, School of Library and Information Science, at Simmons University. Planning in an environment of rapidly evolving technology is a constant challenge. And just as some institutions provide some software-as-a-service, as more educational XR apps are developed, these too might be provided in the cloud, perhaps using infrastructure similar to e-sports. Institutions of higher ed tend to be quite siloed. The current budgetary environment brought about by COVID-19 throws into sharp relief the significant differences in economic resources among institutions of higher ed. The widespread adoption of the LMS was driven in part by some institutions being early adopters, in part by the development of standards for online learning applications, and in part by the rise of businesses and nonprofits in the broader market space (such as the IMS Global Learning Consortium, which guides community-building around standards). Some institutions are taking the lead on this type of interdisciplinary collaboration. Collaborative support structures are exactly what XR development needs, and community building must be part of this support. The ETC hosts regular meetings of Columbia faculty, students, and staff; hosts events bringing industry leaders to campus; and provides support to members of the Columbia community who are working on projects that involve emerging technology. A few projects are under way by research groups at institutions of higher ed, to develop educational resources in XR, such as Cellverse teaching molecular biology and Electrostatic Playground to teach atomic physics, both at MIT, and HoloAnatomy to teach anatomy at Case Western University. Online student Asmaa Sakr has used her MSc in Information Technology to research how emerging technologies, particularly extended reality technologies, can be used in higher education. As with laptops and phones and other technologies that move between campus and users' homes, institutions will need to develop IT infrastructure and security policies to manage XR hardware. The goal of the XR in Education Summit was to create a vision and action plan for the future of XR technology and its use in higher ed. Similarly, if XR as an instructional technology is going to see widespread adoption, higher education must work together to make it happen—as a community, across institutions, and across sectors. Cellverse, under development by the CLEVR project at MIT to teach cell biology, is a two-user experience. Many others were self-initiated and self-directed, and self-directed learning is often the most effective form of learning. Four ways extended reality (XR) will influence higher education in 2020 and beyond Return to school: how a pandemic could force education innovation, but doesn’t seem to Top tech you can learn in 6 months The gap in education To explore the potential of XR technologies in higher education, Hewlett-Packard (HP) and EDUCAUSE collaborated on th... XR for Teaching and Learning October 9, 2019 This exploding area of innovative and exciting options is mostly used in settings outside of education. As tech becomes more ubiquitous and affordable, XR technologies are becoming more accessible to educators. 2067 Massachusetts Ave. Marta Figlerowicz and Ayesha Ramachandran. 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