Pilot Projects

Using Holograms in Education

Andrew ParryLondon (UK), October 2019 - Andrew Parry is an Online Learning Video Producer at Edtech Lab, Imperial College Business School. His main role involves developing and producing audio-visual content for online and blended learning programmes. At OEB Global 2019, his topic is "Using Holograms as an Effective Educational Tool to Deliver Live Seminars". This Boardroom Dialogue will take place on Thursday, 28 November, from 12.00 to 13.00.  

Could you describe Imperial College students’ experience with holograms?

Andrew Parry: We first launched our hologram technology at an event in November 2018 called "Women in Tech", which included speakers who were "beamed in" from Los Angeles and New York to present at our South Kensington campus in London. Since then we’ve used the technology to deliver a number of live lectures for both students and staff as part of a pilot project. During this time, my colleague Nai Li (Educational Researcher at ICBS) has led on research to measure the effectiveness of using holograms in education.
Based on the evaluation of the pilot study (the questionnaire survey), students overall are positive towards their experience with holographic lectures. There’s a suggestion that engagement levels enhance the effectiveness of interaction between student and instructor participants both locally and remotely. There is also a level of enjoyment and enhanced teaching presence that we believe is otherwise lacking in traditional forms of telecommunications (e.g. video conferencing).

How has it changed their learning experience?

Andrew Parry: It's too early to conclude, as we are still in the phase of the pilot study. However, the early results indicate that holographic projection can be used as an effective educational tool. 

What do you view as meaningful scenarios for the use of holograms?

Andrew Parry: Given the current availability of hologram technology

  1. It will break down the limitations of traditional teaching by creating an interactive experience that benefits both students and academics.
  2. Rather than replacing or reducing real-life lectures, the hologram technology will provide greater flexibility for academics by enabling them to continue teaching whilst travelling, ensuring consistency and quality for students. 
  3. The technology will also widen the scope for Imperial to invite global leaders and influencers from industry to give talks to students, therefore enriching the learning experience.


How much effort is required from teachers in deploying holograms?

Andrew Parry: Teachers need to be trained on how to deliver holographic lectures. Training, setting up of holograms, and delivery requires professional media team support and involvement, and it can't be done as one-person-show currently. It might be achievable in future, but not with the current technology.