ECIU Award for Innovation in Teaching and Learning is an annual event that gathers the most promising ECIU University partners’ teams. Dublin University wins ECIU Team Award with the module Learning Innovation for Enterprise (LIFE).
The ECIU Team Awards are based on the premise that innovation is multi-faceted and has a great impact on transformative and sustainable teaching when interdisciplinary teams work together.
“This year, given the global COVID-19 pandemic, innovations in remote education have become an important focus of the competition”, says Asta Daunorienė, the Head of KTU EDU_Lab Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, who, together with other universities in ECIU network, organised awards this year.
This year, Kaunas University of Technology (KTU) participated in the competition with a project called Escape the Lab: Chemical Experiments in Virtual Reality. The general idea of the project is related to virtual environment, gamified elements designed to develop STEM subjects.
Virtual reality (VR) games are the next new thing worldwide and researchers are contributing to their development. VR can be used not only for entertainment but also for applications in medicine. According to the authors, teachers face a challenge: how to develop practical skills while working or studying remotely.
The project aims to develop inclusive and sustainable educational activities based on virtual reality to develop specific skills. The authors sought to replicate the activities of a real-world chemistry laboratory which cannot be achieved using other distance learning technologies.
Virtual learning process simulates the virtual reality educational escape room game. The player (student) step by step solves the problems based on the real chemical experiments. The success of the game depends on the applied knowledge and skills of the played (student).
The idea of the project was tested by the different student groups and received a positive feedback. The authors state that the idea of the project itself is particularly relevant in distance and blended learning situations and can be replicated by creating a simulation environment for laboratories in other fields of study.
Project authors: Tomas Blažauskas, Andrius Paulauskas, Lukas Paulauskas, Airidas Janonis, Eligijus Kiudys, Martynas Girdžiūna, Laimutė Varkalaitė.
More about the project: Escape the Lab: Chemical Experiments in Virtual Reality.
About the ECIU Team Award
Since 2017, the ECIU Team Award for Innovation in Teaching and Learning recognises teams of people that play within and across universities in successfully developing and implementing educational innovations.
KTU encourages members of the university to participate in the ECIU Team Awards next year. More about the ECIU Team Awards and previous winners here.