Child with a virtual reality headset on tries to solve a puzzle

Understanding How Students Learn Through Virtual Reality

How UC Davis Virtual Reality Research Is Promoting STEAM Learning and Helping Improve Child Education

'The little boy, about 7 years old, almost disappeared inside the virtual reality headset, yet the way he was holding up his hands showed he knew exactly what to do. A laptop screen showed what he was seeing: digital outlines of hands manipulating Tetris-like blocks. A hand turned a block to make it fit, then picked up another.

On President’s Day at the Museum of Science and Curiosity, or MOSAC, in Sacramento, Valerie Klein, a UC Davis undergraduate research assistant, explained to the boy’s parents the purpose of the study, which is to understand how children learn in virtual environments.

“I’ve always enjoyed learning new things and being able to teach them to people,” Klein said later. She is majoring in neurobiology, physiology and behavior, with plans to become a psychiatrist. “Seeing that moment when it clicks in your head, for me that’s the best thing ever.”

Everything about the study with kids at MOSAC is unique, from its research questions to its data collection that took place during three busy holiday weekends. In many ways, the two undergraduate researchers are making it all possible.'

Read the full story at UC Davis News

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