Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Preservice Teachers Use of Virtual Reality in STEM Education- The Science Museum Study

Virtual Reality (VR) Museum Visit
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In this current work, we plan to examine the effects on pre-service teachers' content knowledge and attitudes toward VR and museum trips before and after using VR to tour a natural history museum. For this project we are using Google Cardboard. Google Carboard is a virtual reality (VR) platform developed by Google for use with a head mount for a smartphone. Named for its fold-out cardboard viewer, the platform is intended as a low-cost system to encourage interest and development in VR applications. Users can either build their own viewer from simple, low-cost components using specifications published by Google, or purchase a pre-manufactured one. The viewer is used by placing a smartphone into the back of it and viewing through the lenses in the front.

VR Photographic frame of Science Museum
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Methodology: Our study is a quasi-experimental, nonequivalent group design, which is the most commonly used quasi-experimental design (Reichardt, 2005). In its simplest form it requires a pretest and posttest for a treated and comparison group. It is identical to the Analysis of Covariance design except that the groups are not created through random assignment. The lack of random assignment, and the potential nonequivalence between the groups, complicates the statistical analysis of the nonequivalent groups design (Kenny, 1975). 

I am working on this project with two doctoral students and we are currently submitting some of this initial work to a conference and preparation is underway for a publication.

Pre-service teachers engaging in VR Museum Visit