Using VR to help students understand cultural differences

In an era ripe with mistrust and fear, it’s easy to set empathy aside. But what if we could step into the eyeballs of another person to get his or her point of view from the inside? Could that lead to greater understanding? That’s the idea for a project at North Carolina State University that uses virtual reality to help engineering students understand different cultural perspectives.

As part of a two-hour workshop, students pop on a virtual reality headset (most recently, that’s the $199 Oculus Go) and attend a virtual meeting that brings together a small group of people from the United States, China, India and Singapore. In the opening scene of “First Impressions,” the user observes a global business meeting taking place in an office in China. It’s apparent as the meeting progresses that the interactions among the various characters are leading to tensions. All of the students see the same thing, remove their headsets and go through a bit of discussion.

[ Read the full article at Campus Technology. ]

 For more information on using technologies in your classes, contact the University Center for Teaching and Learning’s Teaching Support unit.