Penn State’s VAR Edu at the Behrend campus and the IMEX Lab at the University Park campus have joined forces to create a comprehensive catalog of available immersive experiences. This unified resource compiles Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, and 360-degree video content from various marketplaces into a convenient and easy-to-navigate one-stop-shop. 

The catalog addresses a common challenge for faculty members who want to incorporate immersive experiences into their courses. Identifying programs applicable to their field of discipline can be difficult. Providing a comprehensive list reduces the burden for faculty members, and additional contextual information provided by VAR Edu/IMEX helps to provide unavailable details within the program’s online description. 

For students, a comprehensive catalog showing everything available supports their excitement and quickly connects them with new experiences. The unified catalog provides students with a broader range of immersive experiences, allowing them to explore and learn in new and innovative ways. 

While VAR Edu and the IMEX Lab have in-house catalogs, the unified catalog can create significant efficiencies to scale during the content collection and cleaning process. This collaboration began in the Spring 2023 semester, and the catalog building program will run through at least the next academic year. The public-facing dashboard will roll out in stages starting in the Summer of 2023. 

To build the catalog, Immersive Attendants within VAR Edu will be the primary participants from Behrend. Their expertise and knowledge of immersive technologies will be invaluable in identifying the most relevant and exciting experiences for the catalog. 

Overall, the unified catalog represents an exciting development in the world of immersive education. By bringing together a range of immersive experiences in one place, the catalog provides students and faculty members with a resource for exploring and learning in new and innovative ways.