The project aims to develop a virtual environment and tools within the environment for trainers that deliver online courses with emphasis to courses that relate to soft skills where issues such as body language and facial expressions are important. Additionally through the use of these tools, training techniques that are traditionally used in the classroom such as brainstorming, role playing, discussions etc and cannot be easily implemented with platforms such as zoom, or teams will be used through the tools that will be integrated in this environment.
CoViR project proposes the development of a pioneer multiuser e-learning platform embedding virtual reality collaboration rooms that will simulate class training while offering innovative tools (inside the 3D environment) that will allow for different kind of interaction between the trainer and the trainees. All participants in the virtual classroom will be able to hear each other and see their avatars moving as they move wearing the VR headset. At the same time, they will be able to change their avatars facial expression at real time and select body movements at will(non-verbal communication). Each participant will be able to load his own materials in the presentation board of the room (slides, video, images,sound), will be able to talk to each other, will be able to answer questionnaires, to vote, to change roles with the trainers and make a presentation, applause, stick virtual post it nptes to virtual boards, drink or eat something and more activities that will be decided during the project as adequate for the proposed platform.
CoviR platform will be piloted for the needs of the “Communication Skills” subject, that is considered a difficult subject to be taught online. It is noted however that this course is just used as a case study, as the project will develop tools to be used in a VR environment for any course. The project will prepare the necessary training materials and tools for the specific course that will facilitate trainers to offer the communication skills course through the VR collaborative platform.
An e-learning platform with training materials and video tutorials on VR training will be used along with a teachers’ guide to prepare trainers for the use of VR and the delivery of many training techniques through VR. The trainers that will follow the e-learning course will receive a certification upon the completion of an assessment. The certified trainers will train 3 trainees per country on the communication skills course using the CoViR VR platform to test themselves and the virtual reality tools. More traininees will be able to test the non VR platform (using 3D environment)
The objectives of the project are:
- to develop a Collaborative VR platform that will be able to host online training courses.
- to train trainers and certify them to the use of VR and the CoViR platform for online interactive training
- to develop and test with real students a communication skills course entirely delivered through collaborative VR training.
- to develop an e-learning platform for training trainers in the use of VR technologies and the CoViR platform especially
- produce a teachers’ guide for the sustainability and further use of the platform and accompany materials.
The target groups of CoViR are:
- VET providers that need to provide education that is linked to the needs of the market.
- Higher Education Institutes that looks for state of the art tools for distance training
- Trainees in rural or isolated areas or with disabilities that seek high quality training
The project should be carried out transnationally because it deals with a common European problem requiring a European solution. To develop this European solution we need input from partners involved in Vocational Education and Training around Europe and strong technical partners. Last but not least, exchange of experiences between transnational partners always leads to better products.