The use of virtual reality as a training tool is well known, in particular in the field of surgery. Medical schools have adopted this technology as a way of teaching the next generation of surgeons, for example robotic surgery.
The medical uses of virtual reality are covered in more detail in our training for surgery article within this section.
The healthcare sector is a major user of virtual reality but there are other sectors who have equally adopted this technology for training purposes. These include education, armed forces, construction, telecoms and business.
So what are the advantages of virtual reality training in these sectors and many others?
The benefits are:
- Little/no risk
- Safe, controlled area
- Realistic scenarios
- Can be done remotely saving time and money
- Improves retention and recall
- Simplifies complex problems/situations
- Suitable for different learning styles
- Innovative and enjoyable
The last item is an important one. Training is easier if the experience is pleasant or enjoyable which means higher level of engagement and understanding.
Time and money are also important factors. Training is necessary to ensure that people are able to perform their jobs or learn a subject in order to be fully productive. But the costs can be prohibitive, for example, developing a series of prototypes. Virtual reality removes the needs for repeated prototyping and/or implementation which we know can be expensive. What it does instead is to replace this with a single model which can be used time and time again. Plus it can be accessed from different locations. Both of these save time and money.