VR in Vocational Education
The Danish Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Building and Construction - part of the national technical college secondary education provision - assembled 12 lead teachers and professionals from 6 different technical colleges. These became the collaborating partners and co-creators in the simulations produced.
Both the centre of excellence and the lead teachers were involved from the start. This involved forming learning objectives, contribution through the prototype stages, testing and improvement, final delivery and integration into education.
SiliconHagen set up and managed the whole process from design, development, testing and production. It was clear at the end, that the resulting simulations became very different, user-orientated and much improved due to the integral and collaborative role of the lead teachers.
The simulations have taken existing small-scale installations in the physical education spaces and workshops and placed them in near-reality 3D domestic and industrial buildings. Students’ immersive training was designed to improve their skills and logical problem-solving based on free movement and interaction in the buildings.
The simulations have been designed so that students can explore, examine, understand, and transfer their knowledge and skills from the VR environment to practical application and assessment in the physical education space. The idea is also that students will have a higher degree of competences as an apprentice or trainee requiring less supervision and training.
All installations and content have been modelled on components and equipment that the students use in their education and employers. In some cases, the modeling has taken place in close collaboration with the manufacturers or distributors
SiliconHagen has a pipeline of simulations in development and production.
Current examples include:
Plumbing and energy technicians:
District heating installations in domestic homes
Tasks and assignments used in the physical education spaces are transferred into the simulation. Here the students will have a tool box they will need to use logical problem solving to find faults, undertake servicing, make calculations, altering settings and determine the order in which the tasks will be resolved.
All work and settings are stored in the simulation so that the students in the end receive feedback on their performance - for example the return temperature achieved in a district heating system or functioning lighting. It has been important for the co-creating teachers that the feedback was based on real life situations and not grading or rewards. This approach means that students understand the impact of their work on customers including time and attempts spent on finding and solving problems, cost to the customer as well as the sustainable and quality of the work and energy savings achieved.
Students work individually on solving tasks, finding faults and logical problem solving. It is possible to make mistakes and