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A 3D Virtual Learning System for STEM Education

  • Tao Ma
  • Xinhua Xiao
  • William Wee
  • Chia Yung Han
  • Xuefu Zhou
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 8526)

Abstract

A recent boom has been seen in 3D virtual worlds for entertainment, and this in turn has led to a surge of interest in their educational applications. Although booming development has been seen, most of them only strengthen the traditional teaching methods using a new platform without changing the nature of how to teach and learn. Modern computer science technology should be applied in STEM education for the purpose of rising learning efficiency and interests. In this paper, we focus on the reasoning, design, and implementation of a 3D virtual learning system that merges STEM experiments into virtual laboratory and brings entertainment to knowledge learning. An advanced hand gesture interface was introduced to enable flexible manipulation on virtual objects with two hands. The recognition ability of single hand grasping-moving-rotating activity (SH-GMR) allows single hand to move and rotate a virtual object at the same time. We implemented several virtual experiments in the VR environment to demonstrate to the public that the proposed system is a powerful tool for STEM education. The benefits of this system are evaluated followed by two virtual experiments in STEM field.

Keywords

3D virtual learning Human machine interface (HCI) hand gesture interaction single hand grasping-moving-rotating (SH-GMR) STEM education 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tao Ma
    • 1
  • Xinhua Xiao
    • 1
  • William Wee
    • 1
  • Chia Yung Han
    • 1
  • Xuefu Zhou
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Electrical Engineering and Computing SystemsUniversity of CincinnatiUSA

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