Virtual Reality, 360°, Voice Analysis, 3D objects handling, Artificial Intelligence, Data… The newcomer in training is full of potential. However, Digital Learning – Immersive Learning : Rivals or Allies ?
On the basis of “Nothing worth a on-the-job training to be prepared”. With the objective to “overcome organizational, logistical, cost, security and deployment issues related to field training”; Immersive Learning takes advantage of the Virtual Reality (3D as well as 360°) to put learners into real position.
For 2 years, Thiên, Academy Director at Uptale and Immersive Learning Expert, has been in the middle of these technological advances which make Virtual Reality more accessible. Before in the classic Digital Learning, he now trains companies such as PSA Group, Alstom, Schneider Electric or even IFCAM (Crédit Agricole University) in creation and deployment at scale of their Immersive Learning projects. He tells us:
In 2020, some companies are not yet engaged in Digital Learning so who can do Immersive Learning?
Everyone. As far as you have a real need. And if development of skills through practice have an educational interest for your trades.
The industrial sector was first to use Immersive Learning. In addition of being fond of new technologies, the sector saw the opportunity to replicate in VR their assembly lines or factories to create Immersive trainings for technical skills also called Hard Skills. The learner can therefore master various process and acquire technical gesture thanks to 3D objects handling. While being simultaneously onboarded to company culture, safety process or to warm up exercices.
Short time ago, these same companies used Immersive Learning to prepare managers on leading a briefing – debriefing meeting, handling crisis situations or even increasing sales’ product knowledge in the case of PSA Group. Thanks to features such as Voice Analysis, it is possible to create training scenarios based on learner’s natural language… thence to go further in Soft Skills training.
Can we learn everything thanks to Immersive Learning?
Immersive Learning objective is to put the learner into situation, closest to reality.
When you can create a training scenario in which the learner is in the shoes of someone and is actor in his own training module, Immersive Learning is appropriate. And it can even be more impactful than classic Digital Learning since we better remember something we live than something we read or hear.
From an educational point of view, if your training doesn’t fit this “into situation” scenario there is no added value to approach it through Immersive instead of classic Digital Learning. Indeed it is a new technology, indeed it is innovative and you’ll probably have the wow effect when your learner is going to put the VR headset or open the module on his browser… But is a 360° environment really useful when learning about Excel? Watching a screen from a screen has low interest.
Creating and scaling, isn’t it a bit complicated?
No because the technology evolved a lot.
It has been 2 years since I moved from creation and diffusition of e-learning modules for a well-known LMS provider to Immersive Learning modules. Creation process is actually the same: Storyboard, Shooting, Edition. The main difference is the changing point of view. It goes from simple skills acquisition to skills practicing. The learner is actor instead of spectator and you need to find the right contextualization which will enable it.
From experience, as I accompanied many trades experts, Immersive training module creation might even be simplier because e-learning modules require to conceptualize their job reality while they can directly show it with VR.
Regarding scalability (which is actually the most important phase) VR equipment democratization (in term of cost and taking in hand) make deployment much more optimal and efficient. Plus, we can guide you through existing solutions to deploy while taking into consideration your organization’s training needs and structure.
Is Digital Learning going to be “Has Been”?
Immersive Learning is adapted to some topics. And Digital Learning to others. Immersive Learning is a new training method which completes classic Digital Learning as it can make some modules more efficient.
When looking at Digital Learning, practicing is a Holy Grail never achieved. Indeed, Quizzes and summery exercices are the only way to approach it. Yet, practicing requires to be submerged in Reality, which an e-learning training path can’t simulate, contrary to Immersive Learning.
All in all, it is really important to consider Immersive Learning as a new method to submerge learner in reality through training program that can be 100% digitized. And to fullfil the objective to gain skills and experience thanks to unlimited virtual practicing.
However, trying to replace Digital Learning by Immersive Learning wouldn’t be possible in addition of not necessarily bring added value to your trainings. The whole idea is to make them cohabit together and to take advantage of both potentials and strengths.