WHEN you think of higher education and technical apprenticeships, chances are that virtual reality is not something which immediately comes to mind.

Digital learning has changed the face of education by becoming a supplement to traditional methods and as the UK’s first College of Advanced Technology, PROCAT in Basildon, is leading the development of digital learning to support technical training.

The latest learning innovation, in partnership with Make Real, has seen the installation of an immersive virtual reality suite designed to enhance the learning of construction, utilities and infrastructure students.

The suite recreates a wide variety of scenarios enabling students to be ‘virtually’ on site.

The technology gives them an opportunity to make decisions in a safe and controlled environment, supported by individual observation, evaluation and

Ian Rist, an electrical instructor at PROCAT has been embedding the technology in to his lesson plans.

He said: “The Virtual Reality program will assist the students to test electrical circuits and installations without the hazards faced in real life. It is only when then the students become competent in a VR environment that they can progress to complete the test for real. This will enable PROCAT to teach learners to a high specification while maintaining health and safety.”

Robin Scott, director at Make Real added: “PROCAT’s position at the vanguard of learning through advanced technology, as well as Make Real’s skills and experience at the forefront of immersive technologies, has helped to deliver the perfect environment for innovative collaboration.”

For further details visit procat.ac.uk or makereal.co.uk