Top 10 VR Apps for Education in 2022
For obvious reasons, 2021 has seen a dragster-like acceleration of the adoption of digital technologies for education, consolidating the learnings of 2020 into long-term strategies.
Amongst those, VR has moved from being a curiosity to being heralded as the most meaningful way to transform education for good. Finally, it’s also been the year the Metaverse found its way into the zeitgeist.
This is, however, still very much exploration time: understanding the medium, testing students' appetite, designing new models of blended pedagogy. Every educator will have to start somewhere. But where is that somewhere exactly?
We’ve compiled the 10 best affordable education VR apps to try in 2022 and broken them down into categories such as Soft Skills, Arts & Culture, Geography & Nature, Social VR and Anatomy & Design.
ARTS & CULTURE
Apollo 11 VR
Apollo 11, places students on one of humankind’s greatest ever feats - the first spaceflight to the moon. Once they embark on this journey they’ll be able to experience this historic event through the eyes of the astronauts who took “one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind”. By using a mix of original archive audio and video together with accurate 3D recreations of spacecrafts, all set to inspirational music, this is not only educational, it’s a mindblowing sensory journey!
Created by Immersive VR Education
Available on Quest for £7.99
Anne Frank VR House
Her story of hope, persecution and desperation is known throughout the world and her secret-annex in Amsterdam attracts 1.2million visitors per year. Not everyone is lucky enough to include this in their school trips for the year and that’s why this experience is so powerful.
As now, students can visit the secret-annex, experience the rooms hidden in an office building that hosted the Frank family for two years. A unique, powerful and emotional insight into the life of a 13 year old Jewish girl during WW2.
Travelling While Black
Traveling While Black is a filmed 360 experience that transports the viewer into historic Ben's Chili Bowl restaurant in Washington DC. You’ll sit down with patrons at Ben's as they reflect on their experiences of restricted movement and race relations in America. It feels like having an intimate conversation with newly-met strangers about something both very personal and shared by millions. A powerful and memorable experience.
Bodyswaps is an award-winning soft skills training platform on which students can practise and develop their communication, teamwork and leadership skills.
Immersed in realistic workplace scenarios such as job interviews or project presentation, students interact with virtual characters using their voice before swapping bodies to watch themselves back through the other person’s perspective. This is real-play not roleplay! And the best way to prepare set students up for successful career starts.
GEOGRAPHY & NATURE
Wander the world openly through the magic of VR.
How does Wander work? With the assistance of Google Maps' Street View, you'll be able to visit any place in VR: walk across the London Bridge, stroll the gardens of the Taj Mahal, or witness the enormity of the Great Pyramids of Egypt - unlimited exploration awaits! For those studying from home during lockdowns, this is a great way to travel across the world and through time without having to step foot outside your door. Bring your students on a field trip, anytime, anywhere, from the comfort of their rooms.
Titans of Space
What’s better than a tour of the planetarium? A tour of the Solar System. With Titans of Space students go for a densely educative ride through an academically accurate and interactive recreation of the Solar System. They will have access to 4-dimensional tour information, including facts about over 40 different Solar System bodies. That certainly beats the textbook with a single color picture I had in the 90s….
Engage is a social VR platform that allows educators to create multi-user sessions to host conferences, classes or private lessons with people from around the world. It features customizable avatars (you can make your avatar look as similar to your physical self), pre-designed virtual objects/environments and ability to host up to 40 users at once in one session. For Educators, you’ll have the opportunity to design your own immersive classes thanks to a huge library of assets and their editing tools
The concept is simple: Tilt Brush lets you paint in 3D. With an extremely intuitive UX, TiltBrush lets you unleash your creativity with three-dimensional brush strokes, stars, light, and even fire. Your room becomes your canvas. The possibilities are truly endless. MultiBrush is a multiplayer implementation of the open source code for Tilt Brush. Now you can play, create, and enjoy art - with friends. Since its release back in 2017, TiltBrush has remained firmly in my top 3 to get anyone to discover the power of VR.
DESIGN & ANATOMY
3D Organon is a multi-award winning self-discovery experience into the human body. Students can visualize and interact with the skeletal system, muscles, vessels, nerves, and other organs in 3D. The app features an extensive knowledge-base of anatomical definitions with terminology based on the official Terminologia Anatomica.
ShapeXR is a design and rapid prototyping tool in VR. Students can start creating in 3D within minutes without prior experience and create immersive 3D storyboards to show their ideas. While most AR and VR building tools tend to require steep learning curves or coding experience, ShapeXR ditches all that by providing an interactive onboarding process where you learn to build with your hands. Finally, it also enables real-time collaboration on projects, the closest thing to actually bringing ideas to life.