The Mixed Reality Research Lab (MRRL) formed in 2013 at Bond University, combining 3D printing, smartphones, virtual and augmented reality technology with discipline and pedagogy experts. The collaborative work of the MRRL reflects a growing belief that immersive learning activities along with emerging technologies present a powerful opportunity to enhance education and learner engagement. The MRRL collaborates as a partner in learning to conceptualise sustainable innovative mixed reality solutions to difficult pedagogical problems using low cost methods such as freely available game engine technology and software development kits.
Originating in a single educator’s multimedia design classroom, MRRL now includes two higher education institutions (Bond, CQUniversity) with outreach across multiple disciplines in computer/information sciences, the built environment, visual design, health sciences and medicine. The MRRL has recently engaged with industry stakeholder partners in learning including The Original Rescue Swag winners of the 2014 Channel Ten ‘Shark-Tank’ and Spatial Media a government infrastructure visualisation company to explore innovative education training and delivery methods in the wider community through mixed reality pedagogy. These industry collaborations are evidenced through successful Advanced Queensland grant funding with $100,000.00 (AUD) awarded for innovation in the teaching and learning of First Aid and $66,800.00 (AUD) awarded for innovation in community education and engagement.
An example of innovation is evidenced in the MRRL response to the following challenge from paramedic educators: “How can distance education students practice lifesaving skills on airways manikins to improve familiarisation and muscle memory?”. The MMRL uniquely mobilised experts from ICT, education, design and paramedics to address the challenge providing a freely accessible design plan for augmenting 3d printed tools through a smart phone enabled app. Researched and developed at a cost under $5000 (AUD), the innovation contributed to increased overall skill acquisition and a greater educational understanding of how mixed reality can assist with skills training, learner engagement and distance education.
By providing a community of practice utilising freely available technology and collective knowledge, discipline experts in the MRRL develop their own solutions to problems. The sustainable model of the MRRL has enabled the mobilisation of multiple academics across Bond and CQUniversity through teaching and learning innovation to collaborate and partner with other institutions and industries worldwide. All partners within the MRRL engage with the greater community, be that as an Advanced Queensland digital champion; presenting innovative STEM workshops to K-12 school partners; practising as clinical surgeons, paramedics or architects or as innovation ‘evangelists’ presenting to higher education institutions on how mixed reality supports engagement and innovation across the higher education landscape.
Below is a description of some of the technologies and projects currently undertaken in the mixed reality research lab; for further details on how these technologies are used, click the 'projects' link to read about specific project outcome
The Mixed Reality Research Lab conducts research work in a number of diverse areas. These projects are detailed below, and focus on the affordances provided by mixed reality in areas such as skills development, spatial design communication, and theoretical modelling.
The Mixed Reality Lab has a dedicated team of researchers
collaborating from varying fields of study and locations around Australia.
The Mixed Reality Lab works closely in collaboration with the following academic institutions.
We invest in research and development to ensure that our applications and outcomes are cutting edge and fit for purpose.
The Mixed Reality Research Lab is always looking for new disciplines and industries in which we can apply mixed reality to solve skills development, pedagody and education learning problems. If you'd like to work with us, or just have other questions about the lab and what we do, please contact us via email or phone and one of the team members will be in contact with you shortly.