Viar360 in use as a VR Education Publishing Platform
Distance Education and Learning Technology Applications (DELTA) at NC State University is using virtual reality in Introductory Biology: Ecology, Evolution, and Biodiversity (BIO 181) to immerse students in field-based experiences where they find and observe organisms in their natural habitats. The goal of this project is to develop interactive field trips using 360 videos to give students experiences in various ecosystems in North Carolina. DELTA chose Viar360 as a rapid-development tool to explore the creation and implementation of the virtual reality field trips in online, blended and face-to-face classroom settings.
The three BIO 181 faculty involved in the project teach about 750 students each year. They want to immerse students in the ecosystem to learn more about biodiversity and the ecological concepts. The virtual field trips will have multiple location nodes that are filmed in 360 video along with interactive hot spots. Students can investigate the hot spots to see videos and photos to gain additional information about the organisms found in various habitats such as tree holes, rotten logs or streams. DELTA promotes high-quality education at NC State by extending the reach of the faculty and collaboratively applying expertise in technology and pedagogy in an efficient, effective and service-oriented environment.