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Virtual Reality in STEM Education During COVID-19

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2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual Conference

Publication Date

July 26, 2021

Start Date

July 26, 2021

End Date

July 19, 2022

Conference Session

Innovative Pedagogies Afforded Through Technology and Remote Learning

Tagged Division

Educational Research and Methods

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Paper Authors


Chadia A. Aji Tuskegee University

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Chadia Affane Aji is a Professor in the Department of Mathematics at Tuskegee University. Dr. Aji received her Ph.D. and M.S. in Mathematics from Auburn University and a Bachelor in Chemical Engineering from Texas A&M University. Her research interests lie in the areas of numerical analysis, computational applied mathematics, complex analysis, and on improving students' learning in STEM disciplines. Dr. Aji is involved in retention activities at Tuskegee University. She helps designing strategies to assist incoming freshmen cope with first year mathematics classes. She developed teaching modules to improve students' learning in mathematics using technology.

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M. Javed Khan Tuskegee University

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Dr. M. Javed Khan is Professor and Head of Aerospace Science Engineering Department at Tuskegee University. He received his Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering from Texas A&M University, M.S. in Aeronautical Engineering from the US Air Force Institute of Technology, and B.E. in Aerospace Engineering from the PAF College of Aeronautical Engineering. He also has served as Professor and Head of Aerospace Engineering Department at the National University of Science and Technology,Pakistan. His research interests include experimental aerodynamics, aircraft design and engineering education.

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The availability of virtual reality (VR) technology has opened up an avenue to bring three dimensional real-world experiences to students which may otherwise be inaccessible to them. The VR-based lessons provide opportunities for students to be engaged with complex concepts that can be visualized in three-dimensions (3D) helping them improve their understanding. A team of faculty at an HBCU has developed VR lessons in introductory Math, Biology, Physics, Aerospace Engineering and Electrical Engineering courses. However, the COVID-19 protocols impacted the implementation of these lessons in a VR environment. The lessons were therefore implemented such that students could experience them on their computer screens at any time and from anywhere. The software platform allowed interaction with the 3D environment using mouse/cursor controls. The methodology of the development of a VR lesson and links to the VR lessons are included in the paper. Attitude surveys were administered to students before and after the implementation of these interactive lessons. Results from these surveys are shared. This paper is based on an exploratory project funded by the NSF HBCU Target Infusion Projects program.

A. Aji, C., & Khan, M. J. (2021, July), Virtual Reality in STEM Education During COVID-19 Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference.

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