The “future” classroom may be closer than you think. With the advancement of augmented reality technology and the little boost that the pandemic has given to remote teaching, universities and schools in Brazil and around the world are beginning to explain the Metaverse resource. Sold as the next “revolution” for the internet, the virtual reality space was created in the 1980s and, in this, it is possible to buy land, hold meetings, watch concerts, football matches and classes with an avatar that is controlled by you. .
Although not exactly new, Metaverse has returned to the radar after Mark Zuckerberg, owner of Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram, changed the name of the Meta holding company and said that this would be his next bet. This mixture of the Matrix universe with the characters of the Sims game is now coming to Brazilian education.
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One of the first classrooms of its kind was launched last week by the FIA Business School, which began taking courses on Metaverse. The professor uses virtual reality glasses to teach, while students who don’t even have the device can join the online space via videocall.
“It’s an incredible experience for them. We’re not talking about a ‘high’ world, we’re talking about a different universe. The student can participate from home, lying on the bed, when being transported to the classroom. There, walking, he talks, claps his hands and interacts with his colleagues, as I write on the board, make a presentation and ask questions, ”explains Alessandra Montini, director of the Labdata nucleus at the FIA, which is responsible for creating the space.
She says she took a ten-day dive with her colleagues to create this virtual classroom. It only took three to four hours to pick up the remote control.
Despite the visual and interactive appeal, Alessandra points out that this is one of the main challenges for Metaverse teachers. “It’s wonderful for the student, because he sits down and looks. For the teacher, he has to know the subject by heart, follow the expressions of the avatars to know if he understands or not the student, check the available technological resources. “Teaching a class in the middle class is like a marathon. You have to stop for about 15 minutes and rest afterwards,” he says.
Companies and universities from China, USA, Mexico and parts of Europe have invested in training and courses taught only in virtual reality. Among the benefits, it highlights the possibility of receiving students and employees from all over the world.
Last month, USP also entered the game and became the first Brazilian public university in Metaverso, through an international cooperation agreement with Radio Caca (RACA), which provides the institution with the first NFT (non-fungible token). The aim is to promote research on the applications and the technical, economic and legal aspects of the virtual reality universe.
This NFT means that USP has gained a “rare piece of land” in its own Metaverse developed by the United States Mars (USM), the online “nation” created by RACA. In practice, the Brazilian institution can use this “virtual land” to build spaces for interaction. But, before that, it is necessary to find the skilled workforce to produce the modules and the money needed to pay. “At the moment, our goal is to find people and ideas to build a space and things inside,” explains Marcos Simplício, an associate professor of computer engineering at the USP Polytechnic School.
“It’s an expanding market, and not just for those coming from the technology area,” says Juliana Tenório, manager of Educational Solutions at the Brazilian Institute of Capital Markets (Ibmec).
She says job search in this niche has grown in the marketplace and on LinkedIn. In partnership with the magazine Exam, Ibmec has launched this year a Master’s course in Digital Manager and Metaverso, which lasts a year, costs just over R $ 18 thousand, is fully done online and is equivalent to a post-graduate course recognized by the Ministry of Education. The information is from the newspaper. The State of São Paulo.