CITEC Team Wins Contest on Virtual Learning Scenarios

Jury praised high degree of practical applicability for healthcare field

A team of students and members from the Cluster of Excellence Cognitive Interaction Technology (CITEC) at Bielefeld University won top prize in “Gelungene VR/AR-Lernszenarien“ (Successful VR/AR Learning Scenarios), a contest from the Gesellschaft für Informatik (GI, German Informatics Society). A virtual learning environment was presented that can be used for providing training in nursing care.

A CITEC team developed a virtual training to placing the infusion. Disinfecting hands and work surfaces, checking the expiration date of infusions and preparing IV sets: at the Virtual SkillsLab at Bielefeld University’s Cluster of Excellence, all steps up to actually placing the IV can be performed virtually. In the future, students at the University of Applied Sciences Bielefeld will be able to train to work in the field of nursing with the help of this virtual training platform. The jury praised the high degree of practical relevance of this application in the “Successful VR/AR Learning Scenarios” competition. According to the jury’s assessment, the Virtual SkillsLab has attained a degree of maturity that makes it suitable for use in real training activities. The overall package of usefulness, maturity, and transferability elevates this above the thirteen other contributions submitted by competitors.

For three years, Dr. Thies Pfeiffer, who heads the Virtual Reality Lab at the Cluster of Excellence CITEC, has been working together with the University of Applied Sciences Bielefeld on developing a virtual learning environment for students in the department of economics and healthcare. Several Bachelor’s and Master’s theses have come out of this project, as well as a teaching project that is now being continuously expanded.

The goal is to provide knowledge about nursing care processes in a resource-efficient manner. “With the help of the virtual environment, we can enable far more students to go through certain steps in nursing care at the same time than would otherwise be possible in a single lab,” says Pfeiffer. “The learning effect with virtual training is also higher than if only an instructional video were to be viewed.”

Following the concrete example for nursing care workers, it would also be conceiveable to apply this technology to other scenarios in the healthcare field. “Trainings for people who want to provide care for their relatives is one possibility. Or also in first-aid scenarios where people can refresh their skills,” says Pfeiffer. “There is a great deal of demand for low-cost and efficient learning opportunities in the healthcare field.”

The competition announced by the “VR/AR Learning” working group of the GI expert groups E-Learning and and VR/AR, in cooperation with the Stifterverband. Submissions by institutions to the competition were evaluated by an interdisciplinary panel of experts from the Gesellschaft für Informatik. The award is endowed with a financial prize of 500€ and the award ceremony will take place in September at the VR/AR-Learning workshop during the DeLFI & HDI 2018 conference.      

Dr. Thies Pfeiffer, Bielefeld University
Cluster of Excellence Cognitive Interaction Technology (CITEC)
Telephone: 0521 106-12373

More information is available online at: