Aurasma is an augmented reality app that lets you create and share you own augmented reality experiences. It is available on both the iTunes App Store and on Google Play for free!
Let’s change the way we use your 10 minutes today.
I’d like you to spend 8 minutes of it watching this very short TED talk.
Using the Aurasma app you will be able to do everything he demonstrates here!
Can integrating an augmented reality app such as Aurasma enhance, or even transform, student activity in the higher education context?
In the optional task section below I’ve overlayed the image with a short animated video and so created an Aura. You cannot see my Aura unless you download the app, follow my Aurasma channel, and then position your device over my trigger image below. So while it served its purpose in my case to demo the app to you (and to introduce a little hidden something that you’ll have to follow the task through to find!) I’m guilty of ‘substitution’ as per the SAMR model. I could have just embedded my video straight onto the page here.
But consider its uses for creating virtual tours of a library, or of explanations of equipment in a lab for instance. To explain, rather than have a librarian on standby all day everyday to give tours over and over of the library to incoming first year students during induction week, Aurasma could be used instead to create virtual tours. Photos can be taken of any section the library and a Aura hidden behind it. Students, using their mobile devices and a set of ear plugs can then bring themselves around the library at their own pace, accessing the Auras at designated points. And this can all be done at a time that suits them. The Auras don’t ever go away either so are there for all students to access right throughout the year with new ones added as new equipment or services are brought into play. (And Geographical location (GPS) triggers are possible too which can facilitate easily ice-breaker activities such as treasure hunts!)
Where this app can really have an impact however is in the way it can support both:
– self-paced, individualised, situated learning, and
– the gamification of learning.
And, academic literature is bursting with research desmonstrating the power of both to transform the learning experience. There are so many possibilities and that’s just from the lecturer’s perspective. How excited would Art and Design students be if they could overlay different parts of their physical end of the year artefact with video explaining their choice of materials and design decisions? That would certainly be an exhibition with a difference! This short video (1.38mins) gives a quick example of how Sheffield Hallam University have used an augmented reality app, such as Aurasma, in their nurse education programmes to support their students’ learning.
A trigger image can be overlayed with either a video, another image, audio, webpages, or 3D scenes (collada format files only). See this guide for step by step instructions on how to create Auras.
1. Download Aurasma from either the iTunes App store or Google Play.
2. Create an account.
2. Open the app and choose the Aurasma menu, marked by the ‘A’ icon in the middle of the lower portion of the screen.
3. Choose the search function in Aurasma (the magnifing glass icon) and search for ‘boylanfm’ and choose ‘follow’.
4. Choose to follow Boylanfm’s Public Auras/Channel (the icon of the public channel is the Aurasma ‘A’). You only ever have to follow a channel like this once.
5. Go back to the ‘viewfinder’ by clicking on the square icon on the bottom of the screen and now you are ready to view my Aura!
6. Position your device over the trigger image below, watch the dots pic up the trigger, then let the magic happen.
P.S. It might just be worth your while doing the task today…follow the task right through before midnight Dec 5th (GMT) to find out why!
Don’t forget to tweet #12appsDIT your opinion of this app, or indeed post a comment below. Let us know your ideas on how to use it effectively with students to transform teaching, learning and assessment practices. The more we share, the more we learn!