‘Bring what’s going on in your mind to life!’: Exploring the uses of immersive virtual reality in drama in a rural school community

Year: 2018

Author: Southgate, Erica, Rowley, Louise, Manning, Gillian, Skimming, Tony

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Highly immersive virtual reality (IVR), a type of VR mediated by a headset known as a head mounted display, is beginning to be used in school classrooms across the curriculum. This type of VR creates unique opportunities for learning with the ability to transport students all over the globe, journey back in to history, create amazing environments with commercial off-the-shelf 3D drawing product like the program Tilt Brush. The technology also presents pedagogical challenges and opportunities for teachers. This presentation reports on a participatory, qualitative case study on using highly IVR in a senior drama class in a rural school. Teacher reflections, student work samples, video data and transcripts are used to illustrate how students approached learning in a virtual studio using Tilt Brush and how this differed from a traditional studio space of the classroom. The presentation will discuss how a sense of rural place influenced the students’ and teacher’s use of IVR for experimentation and curriculum-aligned learning. Increasing the opportunities for bringing cutting edge technology for learning, like IVR, into rural communities will be examined.