What is eXtended Reality?

Extended Reality (XR) is a term that encompasses several technologies such as virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and mixed reality (MR). These technologies extend human perception by replacing their view of reality, by overlaying computer graphics on top of reality, or by mixing physical and digital elements, respectively.

Examples of XR Applications for Teaching and Learning

Immersive Experiences

Virtual reality applications, or viewing 360° videos in a VR headset, can immerse learners in an environment and impart greater understanding of a sense of space, scale, or empathy depending on the experience. For example, the film Traveling While Black was recorded using 360° cameras and give viewers a stronger sense of place and connection to the experiences of the speakers in the video compared to traditional video mediums.

Consider how XR applications and 360° cameras might be beneficial in helping students understand course content, especially if you are trying to convey spatial relationships in an open space or immerse students in an experience. Request an Educational Technology Consultation to discuss the possibilities!

Virtual Field Trips

Virtual field trips is a type of immersive experience that allows users to explore a space through a series of 360° still images. The virtual field trip might allow learners to navigate using a mouse or keyboard, and the images will often have labels to explain what the user is seeing in the images. Virtual field trips are a great way to allow students to explore a space that they might not be otherwise able to see, such as construction sites, off-limit or remote facilities, or foreign locations for students that can not participate in study abroad trips. As an example, the CITT Video Productions team created this virtual field trip of the George T. Harrell Medical Education Building using a consumer-grade 360° camera and Matterport.

Art or 3D Modeling

eXtended reality applications offer new avenues for art and 3d modeling. Learners can use VR applications, such as Google Tilt Brush, to draw unique 3D scenes using non-traditional materials and brushes in a virtual environment. Virtual and augmented reality are great tools for interacting with 3D models to get a sense of scale and to be able to examine a 3D object from any perspective. The Florida Museum of Natural History, for example, has many specimens available on their Sketchfab page that can be viewed in the browser or in virtual reality. XR technologies also have great applications in construction, architecture, design, and many other fields that require the visualization of spaces.


Using XR to meet your teaching and learning goals might require an education technology consultation to identify available tools and resources. You can also request a consultation to simply explore and discuss the applications of XR in your subject area. For experimentation, there are VR and XR headsets that can be checked out from the Marston Science Library, and the library also has 360° cameras that can be used for creating content that can be viewed in virtual reality.

If you have recorded 360° video, your content can be uploaded to Mediasite or to YouTube to be viewable online with controls that allow a viewer to pan and tilt their view. The CITT would be happy to assist you with uploading or sharing 360° video, or you can also contact UFIT Video & Collaboration Services for assistance with Mediasite.

Getting Support

CITT Request Assistance - requesting an education technology consultation is a great place to start!

Video & Collaboration Services - for assistance with Mediasite