New interactive online 3D tool to test learning environments

MOOFU, a fast-growing UK company focusing on emerging technology, emerging markets and emerging people, today announces the launch of an interactive online 3D tool that enables teachers, students and planners to test learning environments.
LEVROS – Learning Environments Virtual Reality Online Simulator – has been developed by MOOFU in partnership with Institute of Education, University of London, Birmingham Local Education Partnership and the leading educational planner Dr Kenn Fisher.

LEVROS is a fully interactive 3D environment that can be explored using online characters (avatars) and a simple user interface. The collaborative tool helps to improve spatial literacy while the blending of virtual and physical environments matches trends in the gaming world where participants move around virtual spaces such as in Second Life and Sim City.
Teachers and students anywhere in the world can work together to experiment with furniture, resources and layout, moving them freely to modify environments. With this ability to manipulate objects and positioning, LEVROS will be a powerful way of testing the effectiveness of learning environments for disabled students.
A significant advantage of LEVROS over existing simulators is its unique capability which allows the insertion of any architectural design 3D model being developed by architects in association with teachers so that any specific design concept can be tested by the users to provide feedback for the designers to make improvements.

"LEVROS is the next stage in the evolution of learning spaces for schools, colleges and universities. With this tool, the people who use these environments can experience the benefits and resolve any problems before construction starts. Equally important, LEVROS will develop into a model for learning that brings real and virtual worlds together."
-Nick Palfrey, Managing Director MOOFU
"It is through gaming that the ‘net generation’ are learning and in a sense the virtual learning experience is becoming increasingly authentic as a real world, real life experience. We need to map the pedagogical, curriculum, virtual and physical experiences over each other so that we can have a true concept of the ‘social construction of knowledge’ in the 21st Century Creative Age. We need a blended learning experience, both face-to-face and online at the same time, for teachers and students of all ages. Furthermore simulation is increasingly being used in many educational and training sectors to minimise laboratory and practical costs, to allow students to gain skills and experience in a virtual environment before they move to a more hands-on environment where supervision and duty of care become more critical."
-Kenn Fisher, Associate Professor Melbourne University and Director of Learning Futures
Nick Peacey, coordinator of the Special Educational Needs Joint Initiative for Training (SENJIT) at the Institute of Education says: “LEVROS will have an important role in professional development and student partnership on the design and management of inclusive learning environments. Playing with ways of using and adapting space is engaging for all young people and an excellent way of getting their ideas.”
Sylvia McNamara, Director of Education, Birmingham City Council says: “Through the Building Schools for the Future programme, which is more than just buildings, we are committed to transforming learning and curriculum delivery in schools across Birmingham. LEVROS is an innovative change management tool that gives our key stakeholders – students, school leaders, governing bodies and the local community - the opportunity to creatively engage with design concepts throughout the transformation process and explore the full potential of their schools.”
The LEVROS development is available for test download here:

-Jordi R. Cardona-

© 2008 by Jordi R. Cardona. Link to this post without copying the text.

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