Implementing Extended Reality (XR) Technologies in Australian Education

Author: Shai Coggins, MTeach, MSocSci, BSc, Learning and Teaching Innovation Manager

Date: 29th May 2024

Revolutionising the Classroom with Extended Reality Technologies in a Lumination Learning Lab

The enthusiasm and availability of educational technologies (edtech) in the classroom has been growing over the last few years. The Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership published a paper that identified six edtech solutions to improve student learning outcomes: interactive whiteboards, digital personalised learning, generation 3 learning management systems, AI-powered chatbots, extended reality (XR), and gamification.  

At Lumination, we align with these findings by promoting teaching and learning approaches that integrate these edtech solutions within our Lumination Learning Labs and programs, with a particular emphasis on XR. XR, which includes virtual reality (VR), mixed reality (MR), and augmented reality (AR), offers numerous educational benefits. 

Some of the benefits of XR in education that AITSL highlights in the paper include the following: creating collaborative learning experiences, enhancing spatial awareness, and providing active learning opportunities. VR, for example, allows students to engage in realistic environments, which help them to gain practical and transferable skills. XR is also found to be valuable in pre-service teacher training, particularly in developing classroom management skills (AITSL, 2023c).

Student engagement is clear as smiling student stands next to peer while she uses virtual reality headset, another student with headset in background

In higher education, XR has proven effective in fields such as medicine, psychology, engineering, and management. Additionally, XR offers significant advantages for students in remote or regional areas, providing access to resources like museums, galleries, and work experience opportunities that would otherwise be out of reach.

You can read more about how Lumination Learning Labs (LLL) are empowering students in regional schools, as well as how schools like Goolwa Secondary College were able to do virtual career explorations using VR in their LLL. 

Studies mentioned in the AITSL paper have also demonstrated the benefits of XR in various subject areas, including mathematics, and in developing critical skills such as critical thinking, problem-solving, and digital literacy. Here are some ideas on how XR can help to reshape mathematics education

According to AITSL, collaborative learning within XR environments has shown to produce the best student outcomes, although this approach is not widely adopted in many XR pedagogies in classrooms. At Lumination Learning Labs, however, we prioritise collaborative learning and design our immersive learning spaces and educator training methods to fully support this approach.

Upskilling Educators Lumination Learning Lab 0003 Girton Lumination Lab Teacher Collaborating With Student Learning In

Moreover, we incorporate cognitive theory of multimedia learning (CTML) and project-based learning (PBL) within our XR-supported pedagogies, further enhancing educational outcomes. Both these approaches were also mentioned by AITSL to show great results for XR in education. To explore how our schools utilise these approaches, visit our Use Cases library for more information.

As the AITSL paper suggested, while there are several benefits seen in the early adoption of edtech solutions like XR, it is crucial to ensure that the implementation of these solutions is guided by sound pedagogical principles and supported by comprehensive professional development for educators. This approach will maximise the potential of edtech, ultimately leading to improved student learning outcomes and a more engaging, effective educational experience.

Join us in shaping the future of education today! To find out more about how a Lumination Learning Lab and XR edtech solutions can transform your educational environment, get in touch with us.

About the author:

Shai Coggins is the Learning and Teaching Innovation Manager at Lumination, where she began as one of the company’s pioneering educators. She initially served as a STEM Education Lead, then advanced to Learning Design Lead, and now holds her current position where she leads various projects that place her at the forefront of XR and AI in education research and practice.

Shai is a registered teacher with a Master’s degree in Teaching and both a Master’s and a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Her passion for learning and technology has led her to pursue a PhD at the University of South Australia, focusing on the convergence of XR and AI in education.

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