VR Academy

Bringing learning to the third dimension

Asynchronous video lectures, as popularized by organizations like Khan Academy, have been an incredible tool in spreading education to those who don't have access to or don't learn well in a traditional classroom setting.

However, while these 2D videos are perfectly fine for solving equations, reviewing code snippets, or discussing Renaissance painting, there are a number of fields where spatial awareness is key to understanding. Seeing 2D sketches, images, or videos of inherently 3D objects like molecules, statues, and human organs cannot possibly deliver a full fledged learning experience.

VR Academy lets students review annotated lectures of 3D objects. On top of the typical benefits of asynchronous lectures, the ability to view 3D objects in their full dimensionality and rotate them at will gives students a level of spatial awareness that is nigh impossible to achieve with 2D media.

Students only need a Google Cardboard to watch lectures. Teachers, who are more likely to have access to powerful but expensive hardware such as the HTC Vive or Oculus Rift, can utilize the motion tracking capabilities of these platforms to annotate 3D objects. With access to multiple colors and the capability to simultaneously rotate the object and annotations, as well as point out interesting features with a laser pointer tool, teachers can create new kinds of educational media that have never been made before.

Current functionality is in bold, intended functionality in italics.

Student UI

  • View sample 3D object (beating heart)
  • Gaze Controls for rotation, playback buttons, and timeline scrubbing
  • Browse multiple 3D lectures

Teacher UI

  • View sample 3D object (beating heart)
  • Create annotations with right controller trigger
  • Bring up laser pointer with menu button
  • Change annotation colors w/ color picker
  • Rotate object and annotations w/ right controller touchpad
  • Undo and Redo via left controller touchpad
  • Delete annotations
  • Record lectures
  • Import other 3D objects
  • Change settings, e.g. environment
  • Classify and upload lectures

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