Biodiversity and augmented reality: A future of learning?

In this project, researchers from the School of Management and Engineering Vaud are working on the development of a mobile augmented reality app designed to teach biodiversity to pupils. A team from the School of Education Vaud will work on the pedagogical development of the app and examine its implementation in schools.

  • Project description

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    The goal of this project is to develop an app that uses augmented reality to teach pupils about biodiversity, i.e. the diversity of flowers and animals in nature. The app is intended to be used in the field, that is in a real environment, and not in the classroom. For example, pupils will be able to walk in the wild while receiving information through the augmented reality app on their smartphone about the species they are confronted with. Combining biodiversity theory and outdoor experience through technology may foster learning. To test this, we will compare how pupils are able to learn and memorize information on biodiversity in a traditional context, that is in classroom, and in this augmented reality environment.

  • Background

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    While several studies have reported the benefits of using augmented reality in education, few of them have addressed the use of augmented reality in nature-related education. By developing a mobile augmented reality application, we offer children the possibility to experience biodiversity while receiving theoretical information regarding the species they meet.

  • Aim

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    The purpose of this project is to promote biodiversity discovery in pupils. It is also designed to provide a better understanding of the cognitive processes involved in the use of mobile augmented reality. On a more practical level, this project offers teachers new tools which may favour learning in pupils.

  • Relevance

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    Biodiversity has a huge impact on humans and their well-being. Therefore, children should learn about biodiversity in schools. This project may provide insights into how to implement augmented reality biodiversity apps in the classroom and further enhance awareness of biodiversity in children. The aim is to contribute to a better understanding of the role of biodiversity in the functioning of natural ecosystems in children and thereby to turn them into empowered and eco-responsible citizens.

  • Original title

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    Building Location-based Augmented Reality Applications through Advanced Pedagogical Methods to Support Learning about Biodiversity