A common argument made about the use of VR in learning is that the applications for it are limited. If you’ve been following Next World on LinkedIn and Facebook recently, then you’ll have noticed we’ve been providing some examples that counter that argument.
Just in case you missed them, here’s a list of 10 different ways that VR is being utilised for learning across a variety of business settings.
#1 Empathy Building
Empathy is an important skill to have in the healthcare industry and Embodied Labs uses VR to help it’s clients train their employees in this important skill. Trainees don a VR headset and put themselves in the shoes of a patient with Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s and more.
The goal is to build empathy in the participants and existing neurological research backs up the effectiveness of this form of training, as it stimulates a user’s sensory receptors, which in turn creates new neural pathways in the user.
Read the full article we posted on this here.
#2 Disciplinary and Termination
Letting an employee go is a difficult process. Be too blunt or make other missteps in the process, and you can be left with an employee causing a scene in the office.
Barry is a fictional human being inside a VR experience who’s sole purpose is to be fired over and over again. He’s just one of the many VR characters that have been created by Talespin, a company that offers a variety of VR experiences that help teach ‘soft’ management skills such as how to fire an employee.
Check out the full article we posted here.
#3 Surgery & Medicine
Johnson & Johnson (J&J) teamed up with Osso VR this year to distribute up to 200 Oculus Quest headsets throughout the U.S. to train surgeons through VR simulations of various operations.
VR has shown plenty of promise already in the medical industry, J&J has just decided to be the innovators in the space and make themselves the first to push this technology out into the industry.
Read about J&J’s full plans here.
#4 HR & Organisational Culture
Having a culture education strategy will always pose a challenge of time. How can off-task time be reduced without dampening the educational impact? VR holds a solution, with standardised delivery, coupled with the creation of a personalised experience.
With the hardware and software becoming more affordable than it ever has been, VR is opening doors in this space as well.
Get all the details on how VR will be improving HR & Organisational Culture here.
MIT noticed a lack of diversity in the types of people represented in VR experiences and created an experience which captures how participants perceive race, looking to see what sort of biases they have been taught in their upbringing.
The experience puts the user in the shoes of a young African-American girl, whose teacher has accused her of plagiarism despite having clearly completed the task on her own talents. Participants can navigate the discriminative scenario and the experience will analyse the responses to determine how the participant has been socialised to think about ethnicity.
Check out the full story behind this experience here.
Labour pains aren’t an enjoyable experience by any stretch of the imagination, but VR has found a way to help with this too.
Cedars Sinai hospital in California used immersive VR experiences of relaxing scenarios (e.g. a walk on the beach) with pregnant women, who found that they felt a reduction in their labour pains thanks to the experience.
Check out the full article here.
Concussions are a big concern in any contact sport, especially when younger players are involved, those that could still be developing into the older years of their life.
TeachAids and Stanford University teamed up and created CrashCourse VR – a free app for the Oculus Go and Oculus Quest which teaches young athletes about concussions and what can be done to treat a concussion when it occurs.
See the full story on how football is being made safer here.
#8 Emergency Preparedness
Emergency response personnel are typically trained through scripted simulations of events from the past. These have turned out to be not only an ineffective means of training but an expensive one as well.
With VR on the rise, agencies gain access to a number of varied and unique training scenarios, which lets personnel better prepare for emergency situations, where just about anything can happen.
The content is already being used in Austin, Texas, where the University of Texas is working together with Austin-Travis County EMS, developing a VR experience that will better prepare medics.
Read the full article we posted about this here.
Retailers have quickly picked up on the benefits of VR, both from a learning perspective and from a consumer perspective.
Walmart now uses Oculus Go headsets, incorporating Virtual Reality experiences into their staff training, using it to help them find suitable candidates for management positions in stores.
The company has even stated that they are seeing better results from those using the VR content in their training, citing a 10% to 15% improvement in test scores.
On the consumer side, Toms has been using VR with its customers, letting them experience their Virtual Giving Trip so they can see how their purchase is impacting the world.
Read more about how these businesses are leveraging the power of VR here.
#10 Safety & Compliance
VR is an excellent tool for training people for high-risk situations where the consequences can be extremely severe, even fatal in some instances.
UPS has been placing their drivers into VR simulations since 2017, with other companies starting to jump on the train to add immersive VR learning experiences to their training methods.
Read the full article we posted on this here.
These are just a few examples of what can be done with the power of VR. Here at Next World Enterprises, we’re looking to further the use of this technology in safety and induction spaces and make the content more affordable for business than ever.
We’ve already partnered with Harness, bringing our high-quality, immersive and gamified VR experiences into their accredited training courses with fantastic results.
If you’re interested in seeing more of what we do here and want to get on the VR train, contact us here.
The first step in preventing workplace accidents is identifying hazards. Often, only once an incident has happened is it realised that something needed fixing. And whether we like to admit it or not, our people are our first line of defence. If our people are hazard unaware or hazard tolerant there is actually technology that can help us. In todayâ€™s digital age, there is a way to pinpoint hazards even before any accident or injury occurs? The answer is just right before our eyes.
Eye tracking has become a reliable technology to understand work environments better. The concept is actually quite simple: VR technology can be programmed to reveal and provide analytics as to where someone focuses their attention as they complete a VR training experience. The worker only needs to wear a VR headset fitted with eye tracking technology, and the system tracks every movement of their eyes. Supervisors can view the workerâ€™s visual behaviour in real time. The technology can record it for analysis and reveal what the worker is seeing, but more importantly missing. The recorded video can also be used in virtual reality (VR) training focused on onboarding new employees to work on similar tasks.
Eye Tracking Reveals Workersâ€™ Situational Awareness
Human error, specifically the workersâ€™ lack of situational awareness, is often the cause of occupational accidents in high-risk fields. It isnâ€™t because the staff doesnâ€™t know about the safety hazards; rather, they are blind to them. Workers, especially those who have been doing the same task for a long time, tend to become desensitised to their surroundings and operate on â€œautopilotâ€ when doing their routine tasks.
With eye tracking, you can get unbiased and accurate information on how workers perceive their environment, especially when they are on their â€œautopilotâ€ mode. It allows you to see evidentiary visual behaviours which your workers are not even aware of themselves. In turn, you gain a deeper level of insight into how they work and interact with their environment. From there, you can start identifying hazards that would otherwise remain unknown if youâ€™ve only relied on what your staff says and observes. Importantly, through this technology, you will be able to determine if your workers are even aware of the hazard, register it as a hazard and if indeed they might do that on a repeated basis. Through this technology, you will then be able to act to show the worker that they seem to either tolerate hazards and you;ll be able to elevate their knowledge as to the hazards – with the likely outcome that staff will be more hazard aware.
Virtual Reality with Eye Tracking for Efficient Training
Again, other than determining unknown hazards, staff distractions and roadblocks in your operations, eye tracking can also be used in safety training. For one, the recorded video of your workers can be used as training material. Also, if you use VR technology in simulation training for high-risk jobs, you can integrate eye tracking to see how trainees interact with the simulated environment and process various tasks. You can catch and correct any unsafe behaviour at this stage. This way, they are well-equipped with a top-level of situational awareness as well as hazard awareness, along with other skills, before they are placed on the actual environment.
If youâ€™re a manager in a high-risk field such as mining or construction, capitalise on the power of eye tracking and VR technology to improve workplace safety and employee training. You can potentially save time on training and money from lost productivity due to workerâ€™s injury. More importantly, with such technologies, you can keep your employees safe and healthy â€” they are your biggest assets, after all.
Get in touch with us today to learn more about VR training and eye tracking.
Anyone working within the VR industry can tell you that its application is associated with significant improvements in memory and learning, offering game changing results in safety performance, employee retention and overall productivity. With the path forged by game-makers, studies have now been conducted to back up the evidence, with findings even stronger than expected.
What the science says
Gaming and surgery don’t usually go hand in hand – except in respect to recent findings on virtual reality.
UCLA have concluded a randomised controlled trial examining the capabilities of virtual reality for surgical students. The trial used gamification techniques in virtual reality (VR) to test the difference between using Osso VR software with a headset and hand motion controllers, compared with traditional surgical training. Divided into two groups, the medical students took part in learning a surgical technique for tibial shaft fracture intramedullary nailing and the newly learned technique then evaluated.
The study backed up what game makers have known for years – gamification delivers better results. Gamification is exactly what it sounds like – the application of game design principles to improve engagement, learning and consequent outcomes. The study found that the group learning through VR scored 130% higher than students who trained using conventional methods, also completing the surgical technique faster and more accurately.
So it’s not a stretch to say that VR techniques such as these will produce better and more proficient surgeons. Though it’s a small scale study, companies outside the medical field, who regularly use VR techniques and gamification-style training also see these same results replicated every day.
Next World for Harness Energy
Similarly, this study is inline with results seen by training provider, Harness Energy in Australia. Managing Director and Behavioural Scientist, Michael O’Reilly, saw a need to improve common compliance level safety training so founded Next World Enterprises to better meet this need. Harness use Next World’s VR technology developed specifically for industrial training by the Brisbane start up.
Harness has seen very positive results from using VR modules for worksite inductions, confined space entry, hazard spotting, working at heights and other critical safety training topics. These modules aim to teach workers in medium-to-high risk industries such as construction, resources, utilities or oil and gas workers how to safely operate within high risk settings and within a practical environment, albeit a virtual one.
“Virtual Reality opens up a huge range of possibilities for training,” said Michael O’Reilly. “And the gamification aspects incorporated into the VR training is motivating for participants. And the method we apply is delivering better results. We find trainees can’t wait to try it out.”
Next World Enterprises is developing Off the Shelf VR assets to cater for safety training critical in the blue collar workspace, with many other modules following in the pipeline. Each of these modules is immersive technology which enhances the understanding and retention of information amongst front line workers – the ones at the pointy end of the risk profile.
Neuroscience in a nutshell
The science of memory is a continually evolving frontier but one thing that has been found is that our brains can be motivated to better remember something and store certain pieces of information away. Motivation can come in many different forms such as improving skills or managing real-life situations to help our survival. Information is also better remembered when we are actively engaged – immersed if you will. That is, not just passively reading, watching or listening, but actively participating in a discussion, simulating or doing the real thing and engaging through our senses.
Information comes through our senses, which also include movement and balance sense, telling our brains where our head and body are (vestibular) and body perception (proprioception) which is our understanding of where our body parts are in relation to the other, as well as an understanding of how much force might be required by specific body parts to perform a certain activity. The more senses that are involved in the process of learning, the more motivated our brains are to store that information.
So when it comes to virtual or augmented reality, such as the modules created by Next World, it creates a much greater sensory impact than traditional teaching methods. VR combines sight, touch and hearing with the vestibular and proprioception senses to create an incredibly immersive experience. Memories are further solidified as participants are able to actively interact with this virtual world. It all combines to create not only efficient training tools offering superior results, but a learning tool which students want to interact with.
“VR is an absolute game changer for safety and the way we onboard people.” said Michael O’Reilly. “Between cost savings, better productivity and safety, we’ve found VR the most effective way to train, onboard and educate. All i can say is goodbye powerpoint!”
Neuroscience aside, the best way of understanding how well virtual reality influences learning and information retention, is to try it out. If you’d like to see what VR could do for your business, click here to book a demo with Next World.