Advantages of Virtual Reality in Training Part II



Last week I reviewed a very successful project Pathways was a part of where we created Canada’s first 360 video eLearning video which provided the students the chance to experience a mass casualty situation in virtual reality. I ended the discussion by pointing out that, although the advantages of 360 video and virtual reality seem plentiful, we have yet to see a significant spike in the utilization of the technology. As such, I would like to continue the discussion by offering what most would consider the “obvious” advantages to using 360 video and virtual reality, and then next week continue the discussion by reviewing a few of the advantages that may not seem as visible. For today, let’s start with the two advantages that are generally considered the most common, cost and resources.

  1. Cost Savings: Aside from the significant technological advances over the past several years, one of the main reasons that led to the explosion of eLearning was the tremendous cost savings that could be realized. Simply put, sending your training to the student as opposed to having them come to you is by far, much more cost effective. That same principle applies to Virtual Reality training. Think about it for a moment. Imagine you wanted to create a technical training program for an automotive technician. What would be more cost effective and utilize less resources? Providing 10 students 10 sets of tools, work stations and test equipment, or providing 10 students a virtual reality viewer they could use to complete the same activity? There is no denying the fact the use of virtual reality can save a company thousands in their training budgets, let alone offer a safer environment for training, depending on the nature of the program.

  1. Reduced Resources:Under the umbrella of cost savings, using 360 video and virtual reality for your training will require far less resources, be that personnel, training facilities, equipment, etc.…. Thinking back to the 360 video mentioned last week that Pathways created for Saint John Ambulance, where the student assessed a mass casualty situation and selected the appropriate treatment and priority level, offering the same type of training that simulated the same scenarios would require a tremendous amount of resources, personnel, tools, equipment, planning and a much larger facility then most of us have access to. And that is just to do the training once! Now imagine having to offer that same training 4,5, 10 times a year…what impact would that have on your training resources? Without trying to overstate the point, I do not think there can be any argument that done properly, 360 video and virtual reality training offer companies the opportunity to greatly reduce the strain on their training resources.

As mentioned above, next week I will continue this discussion, moving on to a review of some advantages of virtual reality training that may not seem as obvious, but are none the less very real.

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