FVC staff experience reality in a new ways with Oculus VR

FVC staff experience reality in a new ways with Oculus VR
Using VR to enhance learning at FVC

Forth Valley College’s Learning and Digital Skills Academy have been taking staff and students on virtual adventures recently using Oculus VR headsets and other new digital technology.

Groups based both the Falkirk and Stirling Campuses were shown just what Oculus VR can do to enhance learning and teaching practice and boost student engagement, as part of the College’s digital transformation journey.

LDSA team members Brian Banks, VLE End User Support Officer, along with Liz Muir and Georgia Brown, Learning Technology Support Officers, facilitated the sessions in partnership with lecturers from across the College.

Lecturer Tracy Alexander’s ESOL for Employability students, studying L6 Introduction to Travel and Tourism, were able to use the headsets to explore different destinations across the world using YouTube VR.

Tracy said: “For our tourism students, VR will be able to bring destinations to life. They can visit cities, attractions and historical sites to get a completely different perspective. Students may have never been on a plane or on a cruise ship, but they can experience it with VR and get a real feel for what it is like on-board. It’s exciting, the experiences we will be able to give them within the classroom will definitely enhance learning and teaching.”

The opportunity to use the Oculus headsets was also very well received by LifeStart students, who enjoyed familiarising themselves with virtual dashboard controls, watching immersive video, and learning through gaming.

Lecturer Linda Gilgannon, said: “I could see this being very useful for our students to support developing their life skills and engagement.”

NC Creative Industries Graphic Design (L5/6) and Newstart PDA Level 4 students got hands on with a 3D design platform app, Gravity Sketch, which allowed them to experience virtual sketching and design and modelling.

Kirsteen Wright, Lecturer, said: “I can see this app being beneficial to students on the graphic design course where they can sketch in 3D to develop ideas towards projects, as well as being a fun new way to engage with their learning.”

Headsets and support are available to any staff wishing to explore use of VR for their teaching or service departments. Two curriculum departments Business & Communities and Stem & Construction, currently have the loan of headsets in order to explore potential learning opportunities for their area, with a view to incorporating them into learning and teaching practice during the next academic session.

If any lecturing staff are interested in discovering more about what VR can do, please get in touch with the Learning and Digital Skills Academy at digital.learning@forthvalley.ac.uk.