Enhancing Learning In and Out of the Classroom: Using Virtual Reality in Higher Education

Date & Time

Tuesday May 3rd, 1:30-3:30pm


UBC Point Grey – Irving Barber Learning Centre, Seminar Room (2.22)


Having students visualize spaces and places outside of the classroom has always been a central part of education. Traditionally, this has been done using stories, images, videos and field trips. However, these are limited either in how immersive they are, or in the logistical and budgetary constraints of bringing students out of the classroom.

An exciting alternative is to leverage recent technological advances in virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) to let students virtual explore different places or experiences. For example, imagine the benefit to medical students to be able to virtually sit in on a surgery, or to bringing architecture students on a virtual tour of Paris. There are more abstract applications as well, such as having students visualize a graph or piece of art in 3D.

Like most tools however, there are best practices for use in education that are only now being developed. Coupled with this are the rapidly changing technologies that can produce a steep learning curve for educators. In this studio session, the presenters will share their own experiences and uses for the technology, and help guide participants through the hands-on process of designing, developing and testing their own VR product.

Participants will leave with an appreciation for the different possible applications of VR technology in their own field, while gaining practical skills in making the first steps toward building their own. 360-degree cameras and sample 360-degree footage will be available for participants to experiment with.


Loch Brown, Instructor, Faculty of Arts

Derek Turner, Teaching and Learning Fellow, Faculty of Arts

Arthur Gill Green, Teaching and Learning Fellow, Faculty of Arts