The 8 key benefits of training with virtual reality
Virtual Reality is increasingly being used for serious applications such as onboarding, training and simulations. Virtual reality can complement or even completely replace traditional learning methods. In this article we give an overview of situations where vr training offers value and we look at where that value comes from.
When to use virtual reality training?
Virtual reality training lends itself perfectly to situations such as:
- Training for hazardous work such as in the safety, or medical sectors
- Training that is normally very expensive and time consuming, such as pilots
- Training for locations that do not yet exist, such as a new airport
- Training where errors have a large impact, such as medical procedures
- Training with a high turnover rate for a large workforce
1. Higher engagement and focus
When you wear VR glasses you are completely disconnected from the outside world. According to research, this ensures that focus is four times higher than with e-learning. Moreover, virtual reality leads to more immersion and improves the so-called ‘flow’, which ensures a higher learning efficiency.
This engagement is one of the main advantages of virtual reality training. Moreover, it appears that virtual reality is often preferred by participants over other means.
2. Making mistakes safely
In a virtual environment you can simulate any scenario endlessly. Dangerous, complex or not (yet) existing situations are brought to life. Think for example of a fire safety training in a yet to be built company building.
In virtual reality you are free to make mistakes without consequences. This ensures that trainees are better prepared and have more self-confidence when they put what they have learned into practice. This is especially practical when working with police officers, military personnel or medical personnel, for example.
3. Faster and better learning
As a rule, digital learning is often faster than training via traditional means such as classroom teaching. Virtual reality is no exception. Research shows that vr training is up to four times faster than classroom teaching. This is even without the time required to travel to and from the classroom.
An overarching study that analyzed 22 reports also shows that learning with VR is faster. Moreover, there are fewer mistakes made and that the learning efficiency is higher. The latter mainly points to the fact that what is learned is remembered longer.
4. Anywhere, anytime and at your own pace
Headsets like the Oculus Quest 2 can be used without cables or external devices. This mobility makes goggles easy to ship and operate. This allows trainees to take classes anywhere. The flexibility of individual training in VR allows you to learn at any time and at your own pace.
Virtual Reality training offers various opportunities to collect data. The duration, sequence and number of errors are logical data points. However, in a virtual environment, things like tracking are also possible, where viewing direction or hand movements are followed. You can use these unique data sets to improve your learning but also to implement improvements in the workplace.
Data can also be analyzed in real-time. This allows the vr training to be tailored to individual users. Think for example of reducing or increasing the complexity or the pace of the training. Giving recommendations to a user based on previous performance (or expectations) is also a possibility.
7. Lower costs
The use of virtual reality for training leads to lower costs in the long run. Research where simulation training in VR was compared to real training shows that the cost is about 60% lower.
This is confirmed by the research of PwC. The initial investment is higher but after about 375 trainings the costs are the same. At 3000 trainings the costs are about 52% lower compared to classroom teaching.
8. Less environmental impact.
Developing and implementing a virtual reality training is less labor intensive than non-digital learning methods. Consider, for example, individual hands-on training with heavy machinery that requires equipment, a trainer and travel. In addition, developing and maintaining a digital learning tool is less labor intensive.
The benefits of VR Training
The benefits of training with virtual reality are numerous and summarized below.
- Higher engagement and focus
- Making mistakes safely
- Learn anywhere, anytime
- Cost effective
- Less impact on the environment