Exploring pedagogical foundations of existing virtual reality (VR) educational applications: A content analysis study
New virtual reality (VR) applications for education appear frequently but rarely contain explicit pedagogies. Educational leaders need the pedagogies to support teaching and learning strategies and optimize student learning. A theoretical model (Kebritchi & Hirumi, 2008) aided in analyzing visual and text based content and distinguishing unstated pedagogies in VR applications. The research question was: What principles and practices of pedagogy are evident but not articulated in selected VR applications for education? A total of 35 VR applications met selection criteria. Analysis of public content for the VR applications showed most were experiential while others categorized as discovery learning, constructivism, situated cognition, direct instruction, or unclassified approaches. Elements of primary and secondary pedagogies were found in some applications. Educators and VR developers could use explicit pedagogical frameworks to support faculty development, construct extended and congruent curricular options that stimulate reflections build insights and insure innovative and measurable outcomes.
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