Virtual reality headsets enter computer labs in Indian schools, colleges

Bengaluru: If you visit the Smt. Godavari Devi Saraf Senior Secondary School in Vizianagaram District of Andhra Pradesh during school hours, you may chance upon some students huddled around a computer with huge eyeglasses. These students are using virtual reality (VR) headsets to see how a human heart pumps blood in a bid to learn about the functioning of the human heart more efficiently than a plain textbook chapter.

About three years ago, the school paid about Rs. 4-5 lakh to acquire 32 VR headsets. It shells out about Rs. 1.5 lakh a year to renew the contract for these headsets, having found them to be an effective tool for teaching students. As an example, if a teacher wants to talk about a tiger, s/he can also show a virtual simulation of a tiger walking around.

Experiential learning through VR headsets is picking up in both schools and colleges in India. According to Balijepalli Ravi, Principal of Smt. Godavari School cited above, students get a feel of what’s being taught when they interact with VR environments. He said the school gives students 20-minute sessions in VR per day, based on the availability of headsets.

Ankur Aggarwal, founder of Veative Labs, a company that provides learning simulations and education technology, says it has even delivered VR headsets to schools in Kohima in Nagaland. Aggarwal said the use of VR in education is picking up both in metros and through government intervention in…


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