Augmented Reality is an emerging technology with the potential to support educators in their dual roles as creators of knowledge and instructors of content. Designer-educators may curate experiences for their students outside of the classroom to communicate their personal knowledge and research in a remote art space like a museum or gallery. Instructors may use commercially available applications for smartphones and tablets to enhance cognition or perception with information not in the physical environment. This experience combines the unique perspective of the instructor, the novelty of field experience, and the subtle details only found when in the presence of original art that would be lost in reproductions in texts or online.
Active learning is encouraged by creating meaningful experiences while engaging students as active participants in the creation of knowledge. Their new knowledge is created by traveling to a location to see artwork in the context of the gallery. The perception of the art is reframed through the lens of the instructor’s content, applied to the art as a student examines it through a mobile device. The Augmented Reality experience may include a prompt for critical thinking. The results of this reflection may be expressed in the distribution of knowledge by linking micro-blogging or other short writing and commentary to the assignment.
While the content of the Augmented Reality experiences we are showing is designed for art and design students, the technology and active learning benefits are applicable to a variety of disciplines. Fields that benefit from visual learning or site visits in particular could benefit from AR. Augmented Reality technology is currently used in a variety of fields including museum experience design, locative art, medicine, manufacturing, gaming, and warfare for annotation and visualization. As an emerging technology, AR is a possible tool for engagement with Millennials.
We will present two case study examples of using Augmented Reality for art education. The first is an annotation of Alfred Sisley’s Le Pont de Moret (1888) illustrating intention, style, and perspective. The second AR experience uses Daniel Ridgeway Knight’s Girl by a Stream, Flanders (1890) to present the sequence of building a drawing. The Augmented Reality experiences are designed for students with undergraduate fluency in art and design rather than typical museum labels that are oriented towards laypeople with no specialized knowledge.
We will present the steps needed to make Augmented Reality experiences for education using common commercially available programs and applications. We will discuss the application we have used in the past and my experiences researching the other tools. Augmented Reality applications are available through commercial apps in iTunes, Google Play, and the Windows store. There are open source applications as well. The presentation handout will include a “quick start” guide for materials and steps taken.