Immersive environments offer a unique environment to support learning, training and education.
The key strengths are that they:
- give students a richer learning experience, with more cues (including emotional ones), which help improve retention and recall
- naturally supports social learning and team working
- allow learners and tutors to be remote from one another
- allow tasks to be undertaken as joint activities, helping to build team building skills
- enable the creation of immersive environments which might be too costly or impractical to use for real-life training
- enable real-life, real-time data to feed in to the scenarios
- can support “virtual” actors, enabling every user to get the same experience.
And of course over physical learning immersive learning offers obvious savings in time and cost.
In our experience the real “sweet-spot” for immersive learning is for tasks that have either a high spatial or social/collaboration component, and ideally both.
Think of immersive learning as being more like a guided drama, in which the learner is an active participant, rather than being a passive activity such as watching a video or powerpoint, or even an unengaging “interactive” activity such as clicking through the pages on a CD-ROM or web site.