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IIT Madras Researchers developing VR based Education Model for Rural Schools

April 12, 2023

The Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT Madras) Researchers are working towards developing an AR/VR (Augmented reality/Virtual Reality)-based enabled learning for schools in rural areas.

The researchers are using digital technologies to develop teaching-learning models for subjects taught in secondary schools in rural areas of the country.

With these VR-enabled immersive and experiential learning environments, students get opportunities to learn subjects such as social science, history, sciences and languages. Through AR/VR world-building, digital storytelling and games, the learning process becomes more efficient and would help prepare the students for a competent field of higher education.

As an initial step towards this direction, Project Coordinators Dr. Merin Simi Raj and Dr. Avishek Parui have created the first AR-based mobile app called ‘MemoryBytes,’ which captures the history of the transnational Anglo-Indian community across 500 years.

The mobile app, available in Android and iOS versions, provides an interactive, animated, and augmented experience of photographs, maps, and archival documents.

This project could also help India achieve UN Sustainable Development Goal #4, which calls upon all nations to “Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all” according to these researchers.

Prof. Mahesh Panchagnula, Dean (Alumni and Corporate Relations), IIT Madras, said, “This project has the potential to redefine learning and education in schools for millions of rural school students across India, by creating immersive experiences through AR/VR technology-enhanced pedagogy.” This project is also intended to bridge the ‘Digital Divide’ between urban and rural school students.

Project Coordinator Dr. Merin Simi Raj, Associate Professor, Department of Humanities and Technology, IIT Madras, said, “This project seeks to build accessible and affordable digitally enabled immersive learning experience along with the opportunity to connect with experts working in various fields. The project seeks to build AR/VR supported teaching-learning model which would transcend the barriers of physical classrooms.”

Also Read: IIT-Madras to teach students in smart schools of Varanasi

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