ASU partners with Nucco Brain to enhance classroom experience

Nucco Brain is bringing virtual reality to ASU Prep Digital

ASU partnered with Nucco Brain, a virtual and augmented reality company, to create a new learning experience for ASU Prep Digital students by using the new technology.

The new technology aims to get students more involved in the classroom and have a more hands-on learning experience, officials from ASU Prep Digital and Nucco Brain said. 

Nucco Brain is a corporate content creation studio that has expertise in VR and AR, said Hilary Taylor, marketing manager at Nucco Brain.

Nucco Brain creates assessments for ASU Prep Digital classes that create immersive experiences by using the Google Cardboard goggles and app to bring the class to life.

For example, classes  have used the technology to enter Thomas Edison’s laboratory and learn about how the light bulb was made.

Amy McGrath, associate vice president for education outreach at ASU and the chief operating officer of ASU Prep Digital, said this partnership was created to provide “next generational learning experiences” for high school classes across Arizona and the U.S.

“The partnership was forged for ASU to create some really engaging game-based assessment,” McGrath said. 

McGrath said teachers are now “competing for attention” with their students because of different games and consoles. But with the use of this new technology in the classroom, the students are more engaged and interested in the material.

“Every student has a different learning path,” McGrath said. “So once a student expresses interest in environments that have virtual reality, we can serve up more virtual reality experiences for that particular student.”

To create the experience for the students, Nucco Brain followed ASU's path of innovation and developed a process called TrueTime Rendering. TrueTime Rendering is how Nucco Brain creates the “universes” that have brought students into Thomas Edison’s lab. 

Adam Blumenthal, vice president of Nucco Brain and executive producer for the collaboration with ASU, said through data received from a participating student, Nucco Brain can understand how a student is performing and provides circumstances that help them be successful.

“If we can detect that a student is struggling, we can deliver some content into the experience that will help them solve the problem," Blumenthal said.

The data collected benefits both ASU and Nucco Brain. Nucco Brain is able to study student preferences, which allows them to create a personalized experience to bring them success.

This technology may eventually be brought to ASU college classrooms. Blumenthal and McGrath said this learning experience is something that can be adapted for college classes.

Blumenthal said AR and VR are very important to ASU, and Nucco Brain is currently working with three other departments at ASU to create new projects. 

“Education is very far behind in adopting new technology,” Blumenthal said. “And if we can apply the same productive value and sophisticated technology that we use in advertising for our work for education, is a major difference between us and any competition.”

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