The Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario will be incorporating new virtual reality technology in classrooms beginning in September 2019. The CDSBEO will be working with UP360’s Career Labs VR to integrate virtual reality applications into Grade 10 Careers classes. Through the program, students will be given the opportunity to explore a variety of skilled trades through simulation for skills such as operating heavy machinery, welding and learning about robotics. The experience will provide career learning opportunities for the trades sector.
“It is amazing that students will be able to explore, learn, and discover a variety of career options through the immersive power of virtual reality,” explained Experiential Learning Consultant Liz McCormick. “This virtual reality (VR) system puts students in the driver’s seat to see, hear, and experience the job itself, without ever leaving the classroom.”
Students were given a trial run with VR at the CDSBEO Career Fairs in April, and feedback was overwhelmingly positive. The event provided students with a hands-on experience and the chance to train in realistic situations.
“Providing this immersive experience for students will give them more insight in terms of what their future career might look like and will help them build confidence in their ability to make well-informed decisions about their pathways,” noted McCormick.
The addition of virtual reality to the Careers classes comes at a very opportune time, as the Ministry of Education has recently released a revised Careers curriculum, which includes a plan to modernize learning for students and provide greater student exposure to high-growth industries.
The Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario operates 39 elementary and 10 secondary schools across eight counties. The CDSBEO offers excellence in Catholic education through provincial-leading programs to approximately 12,800 students.