ALA Unit/Subunit: LITA
Meeting Type: Program
Cost: Included with full conference registration.
Is the adoption of new technologies, such as virtual or augmented reality, always fully embraced? What is the purpose of providing a space to access cutting edge technology such as virtual reality? How do libraries develop VR spaces centered around exploration and unknown discoveries while considering costs and operational procedures? How do we evaluate for success?
At our multiple universities, we have been actively creating and iterating on a model of operating a VR service space while supporting a vision of discovery and informal learning within VR environments. We have hosted events and workshops to cultivate learning communities around virtual and augmented reality technology tools in an effort to have a greater impact on the campus curriculum. Additionally, this has made us rethink job responsibilities and models of staffing including hiring students to host drop-in hours and programming around VR tools and activities.
Advances in technology are transforming education and offering new and exciting ways to deliver content, engage students, and better ensure comprehension across disciplines. Virtual, augmented, and mixed realities create significant immersive experiences for research and teaching and could greatly enhance any field of study in the sciences, from medicine to engineering. It can also enrich the experience of the liberal arts and social sciences.
This panel session will explore the demands between operating a VR service space while supporting a vision of discovery and informal learning within VR environments. Through discussion of several specific experiences and models from different academic libraries, we will discuss how cultivating relationships on campus to serve the institutional mission of curriculum and scholarship is essential to the long-term success of any similar VR initiative.