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  • Irina Ketkin, author of #adventuresofthelearner

Virtual Reality for L&D

I find it harder and harder to get impressed by new technology. Either companies are building on an already existing one (the mobile 3D printer) or I see no real-life application to it (the smart watches). However, among all the “next big thing”’s one seems to be creeping towards us and slowly taking over the world. And the winner is… (drumroll, pleas) Virtual Reality.

If there is a gamer out there reading this, I will bet you £20 that your heart just raced a little bit faster. And why wouldn't it? VR devices promise things a lot of other technologies have promised but either missed by a lot or by little. Real-life experience, complete immersion…

and while i appreciate the impacts this will have on the gaming world, i am more excited about the promise it holds over the L&D world and the world of education in general.

Imagine a world, where any kid can be in a live classroom with his peers and real teachers they can ask questions without having to travel for 3-4 hours every day. (I was one of those kids so I know what it’s like). Imagine a manager going through a real simulated crisis without this affecting the bottom line in £££. Imagine you can attend a TED conference or a famous professor delivering a talk thousands of miles from you in REAL TIME. Go small scale - imagine your virtual team attends the same training, team building, meeting by tricking the brain everyone is in the same room.

Perhaps these ideas are a bit too out there and VR is not ready for this just yet. But what if we make it ready by demanding it becomes suitable to L&D professionals? What if we save a team from a terrible manager by simply letting that manager talk to other people or put him in life-threatening situation without actually putting him in danger?

I am not technologically savvy enough to know what would go into creating something like this. But if someone out there is, and you have the guts to go after this idea, kudos and good luck! Oh, and do put me in the credits :)

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