Virtual and Augmented Reality Technology in Education and Entertainment

A special issue of Applied Sciences (ISSN 2076-3417). This special issue belongs to the section "Computing and Artificial Intelligence".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 July 2024 | Viewed by 15180

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Information Management, College of Information and Distribution Science, National Taichung University of Science and Technology, Taichung 40343, Taiwan
Interests: applied science education; educational technology; maker education; sustainability; extended reality

E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Information Management, College of Information and Distribution Science, National Taichung University of Science and Technology, Taichung 40343, Taiwan
Interests: artificial intelligence in education; augmented reality; information technology education

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Guest Editor
Department of Computer Science, College of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, National Tsing Hua University, Hsinchu 30013, Taiwan
Interests: AI big data analysis; knowledge data base; IoT sensor hubs; LoRa/NB-IoT transmission
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Applied science education focuses on the effective use of strategies to convey knowledge, attitudes and skills in the field of applied sciences. In contrast to basic scientific knowledge, applied science focuses more on practical application fields or industrial uses. In other words, in addition to the teaching of basic principles, it is more important to cultivate learners’ attitudes and skills in application. For example, training factories exist for this purpose. However, limited by funding and spaces, traditional training factories are often difficult to provide the most emerging technical fields for learners to operate. Additionally, difficult and dangerous industrial fields (such as precision semiconductor manufacturing processes, dangerous loading and unloading operations) are often difficult to present in schools, which is the limitation of applied science education in practical training. Among the many emerging technologies, virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality have gradually matured in recent years, and have been adopted by educators and industries. The common feature of these emerging technologies is that they are all assisted by digital content to help users conduct simulation or practical learning in difficult or dangerous application fields. This is enough to meet the important educational goals of today’s applied science education. Under the overall global trend and context, this Special Issue invites experts and scholars who study new science and technologies to conduct more in-depth research on current and future applied science, and respond to the educational issues in the key medium of applied science.

Prof. Dr. Tien Chi Huang
Dr. Jian Wei Tzeng
Prof. Dr. Nen Fu Huang
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • applied science education
  • virtual reality
  • augmented reality
  • mixed reality
  • edutainment

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

17 pages, 4125 KiB  
Article
Exploring the Efficacy of Mixed Reality versus Traditional Methods in Higher Education: A Comparative Study
by Radu Emanuil Petruse, Valentin Grecu, Maja Gakić, Jorge Martin Gutierrez and Daniel Mara
Appl. Sci. 2024, 14(3), 1050; https://doi.org/10.3390/app14031050 - 26 Jan 2024
Viewed by 809
Abstract
“Immersive technology” is a broad and evolving term that encompasses various kinds of technologies and viewpoints, and has applications in various fields, such as education, healthcare, entertainment, the arts, and engineering. This research paper aims to compare the effectiveness of two teaching methods, [...] Read more.
“Immersive technology” is a broad and evolving term that encompasses various kinds of technologies and viewpoints, and has applications in various fields, such as education, healthcare, entertainment, the arts, and engineering. This research paper aims to compare the effectiveness of two teaching methods, namely the conventional method (using PowerPoint slides), and the immersive technology method (initiating a mixed reality with a HoloLens 2 device). The experiment involved two groups of students, aged between 19 and 52 years-of-age, who received different types of instruction: the first group viewed a PowerPoint slide with an image of the human muscular system, and the second group viewed a 3D hologram of the human body that displayed the same muscle groups as in the PowerPoint slide. The researchers wanted to examine if mixed reality devices could improve students’ cognitive abilities and explore if the age of the participants had any impact on the effectiveness of the instruction method. The main findings of this study are that the instruction method that used mixed reality technology, the Microsoft HoloLens 2 device, was more suitable for younger participants, and that traditional instruction methods, such as PowerPoint slides, are more appropriate for older students. While this research provides some valuable insights into the factors that influence student performance in anatomy tests, it has some limitations that should be considered. Full article
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19 pages, 2539 KiB  
Article
Application of Virtual Reality in Learning Quantum Mechanics
by Wernhuar Tarng and Ming-Che Pei
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(19), 10618; https://doi.org/10.3390/app131910618 - 23 Sep 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1516
Abstract
Quantum mechanics is a physical theory that describes the behavior of microscopic matter. According to quantum theory, a microscopic particle may be described as either a particle or a wave, called wave–particle duality. Many students in high school or college (BC level) find [...] Read more.
Quantum mechanics is a physical theory that describes the behavior of microscopic matter. According to quantum theory, a microscopic particle may be described as either a particle or a wave, called wave–particle duality. Many students in high school or college (BC level) find it difficult to imagine that microscopic particles have both particle and wave properties. This is mainly caused by the scale of the world they see since quantum mechanics deals with things that are too small, while the wave and particle phenomena at the microscopic scale are difficult to understand, measure, or verify in the real world. In this study, virtual reality technology was used to develop teaching modules on quantum mechanics, allowing learners to see the particles and wave phenomena of electrons and photons in the microscopic world through interactive operation in virtual experiments. A teaching experiment was conducted by recruiting 60 high school students as research subjects. The control group (30 students) used physics textbooks, and the experimental group (30 students) used the virtual teaching modules for learning quantum mechanics. The analysis results show that the experimental group’s learning effectiveness is higher than the control group. The questionnaire results show that students were satisfied with the learning experience using virtual teaching modules with high learning motivation and low cognitive load because virtual reality can visualize the abstract concepts of wave–particle duality and help them understand quantum mechanics. Full article
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22 pages, 10776 KiB  
Article
VR Training System to Help Improve Photography Skills
by Hiroki Kobayashi and Katashi Nagao
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(13), 7817; https://doi.org/10.3390/app13137817 - 03 Jul 2023
Viewed by 809
Abstract
People aspiring to enhance their photography skills face multiple challenges, such as finding subjects and understanding camera-specific parameters. To address this, we present the VR Photo Training System. This system allows users to practice photography in a virtual space and provides feedback on [...] Read more.
People aspiring to enhance their photography skills face multiple challenges, such as finding subjects and understanding camera-specific parameters. To address this, we present the VR Photo Training System. This system allows users to practice photography in a virtual space and provides feedback on user-taken photos using machine-learning models. These models, trained on datasets from the virtual environment, evaluate the aesthetics, composition, and color of photos. The system also includes a feature offering composition advice, which further aids in skill development. The evaluation and recommendation functions of our system have shown sufficient accuracy, proving its effectiveness for photography training. Full article
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15 pages, 2680 KiB  
Article
ID Tech: A Virtual Reality Simulator Training for Teenagers with Intellectual Disabilities
by Marine Capallera, Geneviève Piérart, Francesco Carrino, Robin Cherix, Amélie Rossier, Elena Mugellini and Omar Abou Khaled
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(6), 3679; https://doi.org/10.3390/app13063679 - 14 Mar 2023
Viewed by 1155
Abstract
People with intellectual disability (ID) should routinely train themselves to carry out a variety of daily challenging tasks while being supervised by one or more supervisors. Virtual reality (VR) technology enables the simulation of certain learning scenarios that would be risky or difficult [...] Read more.
People with intellectual disability (ID) should routinely train themselves to carry out a variety of daily challenging tasks while being supervised by one or more supervisors. Virtual reality (VR) technology enables the simulation of certain learning scenarios that would be risky or difficult to set up or repeatedly replicate in the actual world. This paper introduces a VR simulator created for this aim with the assistance of social educators. The purpose is to use VR to conduct learning exercises with teenagers with ID and assess the extent to which the abilities learned in VR can be transferred to the real world. This project focuses mainly on urban mobility with three types of exercise. A study was conducted with 18 students in five institutions for 7 months. Post-tests were also carried out after 1 month with 11 teenagers. In the end, four teenagers are completely autonomous in their travels: two travel on foot and two travel by public transport. Regarding the impact analysis, the results are stable over time regarding self-reported ease, satisfaction, and fatigability. Finally, the system received valuable feedback from the educators. Full article
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19 pages, 2998 KiB  
Article
Logogram VR: Treadmill-Coupled VR with Word Reflective Content for Embodied Logogram Learning
by Gwangbin Kim, Eunsol An and SeungJun Kim
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(3), 1627; https://doi.org/10.3390/app13031627 - 27 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1702
Abstract
A logogram is a type of writing system in which each character represents a word. Compared to segmental scripts where the alphabets reflect sounds, learning logograms are disengaging, since each character is not linked to its pronunciation. This paper presents Logogram VR, a [...] Read more.
A logogram is a type of writing system in which each character represents a word. Compared to segmental scripts where the alphabets reflect sounds, learning logograms are disengaging, since each character is not linked to its pronunciation. This paper presents Logogram VR, a virtual reality edutainment game that uses a treadmill and controllers to teach Hanja, which uses logograms. Hanja is a traditional Korean language writing system comprising over 8000 Chinese characters. The system leverages the logogram’s feature that each letter stands for each vocabulary item, as an embodied learning strategy. Specifically, it incorporates each character’s meaning into the VR learning environment, accompanied by gamified actions using a treadmill and VR controllers. We evaluated the system with 33 participants to test its overall usability, while determining the desirable playtime and number of characters for the further enhancement of it. We demonstrated and assessed the system with 125 visitors at an exhibition to disseminate it and verify the results with a wider population sample. The user studies revealed that the system provides a playful experience for learning Hanja without severe motion sickness. The differences in age groups showed that the embodiment approach utilizing meanings and actions in VR may be an effective logogram edutainment strategy, particularly among adolescents. Full article
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16 pages, 6551 KiB  
Article
An Operator Training Simulator to Enable Responses to Chemical Accidents through Mutual Cooperation between the Participants
by Junseo Lee and Byungchol Ma
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(3), 1382; https://doi.org/10.3390/app13031382 - 20 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1599
Abstract
Research in the training simulation sector to improve the realism and immersive experience of operator training simulators (OTSs) entails combining cutting-edge technologies such as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). Although most of the existing studies has been about troubleshooting training, research [...] Read more.
Research in the training simulation sector to improve the realism and immersive experience of operator training simulators (OTSs) entails combining cutting-edge technologies such as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). Although most of the existing studies has been about troubleshooting training, research into the response to chemical accidents through mutual cooperation between the participants has been insufficient. Therefore, we developed an immersive OTS that can facilitate mutual cooperation. Training processes to educate trainees in general chemical facilities were selected, while changes that can occur in facilities during an accident and the corresponding responses in various scenarios were used as the training content. A communication system that relays information between the worksite and the control room was implemented using a distributed control system (DCS) and AR technology. We installed a pilot plant and developed a DCS, thereby establishing an infrastructure that allows the boardman and field operator to cooperate during accident scenarios. Furthermore, we developed an OTS that allowed trainees to learn prompt and accurate responses to chemical accidents through operation of the actual equipment. The training effect of the OTS was found to be approximately 4.5 times better than traditional training methods. It is, therefore, anticipated that the developed OTS will minimize losses or damage caused by chemical accidents. Full article
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10 pages, 452 KiB  
Article
Impact of Virtual Reality Simulation in Endodontics on the Learning Experiences of Undergraduate Dental Students
by Raidan Ba-Hattab, Dilek Helvacioglu-Yigit, Lamyia Anweigi, Tayeb Alhadeethi, Mahwish Raja, Sundus Atique, Hanin Daas, Rebecca Glanville, Berkan Celikten, Kaan Orhan and Kamran Ali
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(2), 981; https://doi.org/10.3390/app13020981 - 11 Jan 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2271
Abstract
We aimed to evaluate the impact of Virtual Reality Dental Simulators (VRDS) on preclinical training in endodontics for undergraduate dental students. Purposive sampling technique was used to target undergraduate dental students at two dental schools: in Qatar and Turkey. After training on endodontic [...] Read more.
We aimed to evaluate the impact of Virtual Reality Dental Simulators (VRDS) on preclinical training in endodontics for undergraduate dental students. Purposive sampling technique was used to target undergraduate dental students at two dental schools: in Qatar and Turkey. After training on endodontic access cavity preparation on upper anterior teeth using acrylic teeth on dental mannequins and virtual reality haptic dental simulator, a questionnaire based on a combination of open- and closed-ended items was distributed to the participants. The sample included 60 dental undergraduate students. The participants reported positive experiences with VRDS and 76% considered it to be helpful in improving their fine motor skills. Endodontic access cavity preparation on VRDS was perceived to be similar to natural and acrylic teeth by 73.34% and 53% of participants, respectively. Overall, 85% of participants supported the use of VRDS training to supplement conventional training on dental mannequins but also recommended the need for improvements in VRDS training in endodontics. The findings of this study underscore the benefits of VRDS in endodontics. Future research involving larger samples from multiple institutions may help to optimize VRDS in undergraduate dental education. Full article
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20 pages, 4012 KiB  
Article
Countering the Novelty Effect: A Tutorial for Immersive Virtual Reality Learning Environments
by Ines Miguel-Alonso, Bruno Rodriguez-Garcia, David Checa and Andres Bustillo
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(1), 593; https://doi.org/10.3390/app13010593 - 01 Jan 2023
Cited by 18 | Viewed by 3320
Abstract
Immersive Virtual Reality (iVR) is a new technology, the novelty effect of which can reduce the enjoyment of iVR experiences and, especially, learning achievements when presented in the classroom; an effect that the interactive tutorial proposed in this research can help overcome. Its [...] Read more.
Immersive Virtual Reality (iVR) is a new technology, the novelty effect of which can reduce the enjoyment of iVR experiences and, especially, learning achievements when presented in the classroom; an effect that the interactive tutorial proposed in this research can help overcome. Its increasingly complex levels are designed on the basis of Mayer’s Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning, so that users can quickly gain familiarity with the iVR environment. The tutorial was included in an iVR learning experience for its validation with 65 users. It was a success, according to the user satisfaction and tutorial usability survey. First, it gained very high ratings for satisfaction, engagement, and immersion. Second, high skill rates suggested that it helped users to gain familiarity with controllers. Finally, a medium-high value for flow pointed to major concerns related to skill and challenges with this sort of iVR experience. A few cases of cybersickness also arose. The survey showed that only intense cybersickness levels significantly limited performance and enjoyment; low levels had no influence on flow and immersion and little influence on skill, presence, and engagement, greatly reducing the benefits of the tutorial, despite which it remained useful. Full article
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