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Do you find the idea of the metaverse to be fascinating or terrifying? Continue reading to learn how it can change eLearning in 4 different ways, and then make up your own mind!
The period of time that we now refer to as the “Digital Revolution” began to experience rapid development toward the end of the 20th century. The transition from mechanical and analog to digital electronics took place in a relatively short amount of time in human history. The remarkable proliferation of technological advancements is what has brought us to this day and age, which is characterized by the pervasive presence of technology in every aspect of our lives. The metaverse is the most recent technological development that everyone seems to be talking about. Everyone is curious about what the future will be like after Mark Zuckerberg gave a speech about the next generation of the internet and Facebook rebranded themselves, respectively. Although it would appear that the metaverse will have a variety of applications, the focus of this article is on the ways in which it has the potential to revolutionize the way online education is delivered.
Let’s settle one major issue first before we delve into the details. The metaverse is a topic of much discussion, but what precisely is it? In Neal Stephenson’s science fiction book Snow Crash from 1992, the phrase “metaverse” was first used to describe a three-dimensional virtual world in which people interacted with one another as avatars. The metaverse is a virtual 3D extension of the internet as we know it in the novel, much as it is in real life. It gives users a great deal of freedom when it comes to in-person communication and lets them create any kind of online setting they can think of.
More details about metaverse, here it is.
Although there is still plenty to look forward to from the metaverse, it has already demonstrated tremendous promises, particularly in the gaming industry. Since a few years ago, players of several video games have been able to freely engage with one another and even attend events like parties and concerts using their avatars. However, the metaverse is not just useful for the game business. With the popularity of online learning growing, institutions, educators, and others are exploring for ways to make distance learning more dynamic and engaging. Let’s examine a few ways the metaverse can be of assistance in this.
The potential of the metaverse to bring online learning settings to life is the main advantage that eLearning may get from it. Teachers can design classrooms to meet their specific instructional needs. Their imagination is their only constraint. At the same time, fully editable avatars let students interact with actual objects and apply their learning. Additionally, allowing students to utilize avatars that are accurate representations of themselves rather than hazy cartoons adds an extra layer of reality to the virtual classroom, increasing student engagement.
It should not come as a surprise that online learning makes engagement and communication more difficult. Both learners and instructors might experience feelings of isolation and loneliness when they are separated by physical distance. In order to alleviate these feelings and encourage participants to engage in conversation with one another, the metaverse enables teachers to construct meeting spaces within which they can have private discussions. Learners also have the ability to construct study rooms in which they can work together, study with one another, and interact socially. Everyone may connect with one another by viewing each other through the use of their avatars, simply share data with one another, interact with the same items, or play games. These characteristics encourage students to connect with their teachers and peers, which in turn improves their overall educational experience.
Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality(VR) are the two primary technologies that are used to support the metaverse. To be more specific, users are outfitted with devices such as headsets and/or glasses that enable them to completely submerge themselves in the virtual environment. Online students have a lot to gain from immersive learning since it improves their ability to retain information, makes them more engaged in their studies, and helps them put theory into practice. Learners can experience simulations and games as if they were physically present thanks to virtual reality and augmented reality technology. For instance, 3D graphics can assist people comprehend how a particular piece of machinery operates or what a certain mathematical concept looks like when it is applied in the real world.
It has been recognized for a good number of years now that learning may be gamified to great advantage. It makes education more enjoyable and less difficult, improves the ability to solve problems, provides feedback in real time, and generally improves the learning experience. Gamification is brought to a whole new level with the advent of the metaverse since users are no longer merely participating in a game; rather, they are immersed in it. When virtual reality and augmented reality (VR/AR) technology is combined with the limitless potential of the metaverse, educators are able to design game-based tasks for students to complete in surroundings that are extremely lifelike and closely mirror actual situations.
The metaverse is the next stage of the internet, and it is already here, despite the fact that many of us are still doubtful about it. The game industry has been quicker to explore its capabilities, but in the not-too-distant future, it will find its way into other aspects of our life. The immersive capabilities of the metaverse are anticipated to be of tremendous use to eLearning, which will allow for the creation of more lifelike virtual learning environments and a learning process that is both more engaging and experiential as a whole. Even while we can only speculate about what the future holds at this time, it will be fascinating to watch the transformations take place as they occur.