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University of Canberra Library adds #VR Headsets to the catalogue - on the road to immersive learning resources in #Education

In September 2018 the UC Library added VR headsets to the catalogue, available in the short loan section. Students can loan the headsets for up to 3 hours. Support for using the headsets will be limited to basic guidance, and beyond this it will be up to students to have their apps and content ready, just needing the headset to get going. Supporting this technology is difficult given the number of different phones, OS versions and apps out there giving rise to any app recommendations working on one phone and not another. For this reason support will be limited, however as our in-house knowledge grows more advice will be able to be given.
A small number of headsets to start with represents a low risk investment that also allows staff to up skill in VR technology. Demo sessions and training given to Library staff has been fun and a valuable sharing activity as everyone is at different stages of familiarity. Now that a number of staff in the library have been up skilled we can begin to promote the presence of the headsets to faculty in the hope they are interested in including VR content in their curriculum resource lists. The Library can help acquire, curate and catalogue new VR content and expose this content through the library search tool. Research shows a high impact on learning through VR, for example see: https://theblog.adobe.com/virtual-reality-will-change-learn-teach/
As interest and examples of VR embedded in curriculum expand we can grow the number of headsets available if demand is high. There would be an upper limit to the number of units due to storage and maintenance.
We can expect to see some advertising and communications from the Library in relation to this development over the coming weeks.




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