The power of virtual reality for employee education and how to get started

Founder of, transforming learning standards to scale.

Imagine this: you are playing a favorite video game and you are immersed in the story, the graphics, the soundtrack and the reality of the experience. Time passes and the memories you have created are as clear and memorable as those of your real life. Your boss’s voice tells you, “I’ll finish this mission” or “One more turn and then bed “.

If this touches a lot, you will be part of the 40% of the world’s population that plays video games. This number of players grows by 5.6% every year. There is certainly disagreement about the value of time spent playing games. As with most new technologies, I believe that the positives outweigh the negatives and that games can be leveraged to improve society.

I grew up playing video games. In fact, it was difficult to boot from my computer (i World of Warcraft). As I grew in my professional life, I quickly realized that many of the lessons I learned from games, such as learning by doing, problem solving, teamwork, and strategic thinking, could and should be to apply. . I also learned that online games have the power to transform learning and memory retention.

When I gathered the concepts I learned from games and applied them to retention techniques, the impact of immersive virtual reality or PC-based training became my focus, specifically in the area of ​​job security. , where people can die if the rescue rules are not followed I have not remembered or adhered to.

I believe that companies have the opportunity to build a future for employee education that includes the effective elements of video games. Video games provide an effective way to impart knowledge when we examine data about what allows for long-term understanding and retention.

Why is RV so effective at retaining information?

The answer is a 2,500-year-old technique known as “the palace of memory.” This technique, often used by those competing in memory championships, involves associating objects with specific locations or positions in the form of mental images. The memory expert, Dr. Anthony Metivier, teaches this method in which participants link these objects to a compelling story that becomes a useful tool for memorization and retention.

We delve into how virtual reality can help you use this technique.

• The power of 3D spaces

The definition of virtual reality, according to computer scientist Steven M. LaValle, is “to induce specific behavior in an organism through artificial sensory stimulation, while the organism has little or no awareness of interference.” Basically, this means replicating the way the brain receives real-world information so accurately that the subconscious cannot differentiate itself.

Well-constructed simulations use total 3D realism in visuals and sound. Feed the brain with realistic and relatable inputs that trigger subconscious reactions that cause users to take the situation seriously. Looking at the data from my company’s training participants, we found that very realistic 3D art and sound impact retention and understanding. Researchers at the University of Maryland have also found that they recall aids in virtual reality immersion.

• Unusual events

The brain tends to join the extraordinary things that happen in our lives and virtual reality gives us the freedom to create these unique and rare moments for specific purposes. For example, in safety training simulations, we use a combination of distraction and danger that results in serious injury or death. This unique experience can be much more memorable than the written word or even a video.

• Attractive stories

Stories can be powerful. According to cognitive psychologist Jerome Bruner, people are 22 times more likely to remember information that takes the form of a story. And neuroeconomist Paul Zak has discovered that we tend to better understand and remember stories directed by characters that include emotional content.

In a simulation, you are usually part of the story. And that’s huge. You are inverted. In my experience, when you have agency and when your actions directly affect the outcome, your understanding of what is happening and why, as well as the retention of lessons learned, increases exponentially.

Creation of interactive virtual reality training programs

It may be difficult or intimidating to start an RV initiative. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

• Start small: You don’t need to write a massive check for a new virtual reality project on the first day. The important thing is to start. Experiment and collect feedback and feedback from your team. Buy a few virtual reality headphones, get a relevant, affordable (and on sale) virtual reality training experience, and start learning by trial and error.

• Be open to ideas and feedback: Once you start exploring virtual reality, you may see an explosion of ideas from different departments. Each sector of your business can take advantage of virtual reality training in a unique way. Gather these ideas and begin to understand the framework of your employees ’needs.

• Don’t get caught up in bespoke products: There are many possibilities for an existing VR training product to meet the basic needs of your business. Typically, thousands of people have checked and tested the products on sale; this can save you time and money that would otherwise be spent on building a highly customized product. It omits the maintenance and additional costs of an integrated product from scratch taking advantage of an existing solution.

Virtual reality is an innovative and attractive tool that is already transforming learning and we are only scratching the surface of its potential. It’s not hard to get started. By doing so, you can empower your employees with a new learning experience and lay the groundwork for your company’s digital future. Because who doesn’t want to play video games at work, right?

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