Chinese Ministry of Education Partners with Microsoft to Promote VR in Classrooms

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Center One, Microsoft’s innovation demonstration center, the Education and Management Information Center, part of the People’s Republic of China’s Ministry of Education, and Microsoft China jointly announced that they will start application, training and laboratory construction of virtual reality (VR) in Chinese colleges, universities and vocational schools. The project focuses on developing new technologies, cultivating relevant talents, establishing teaching laboratories, implementing strategies such as “Internet+”, and “Made in China 2025”, and applying VR and other new models in education.

Xuejun Tian, deputy minister of the Ministry of Education said, “Talent training is the primary task of education. In the wake of flourishing new technologies such as virtual reality, it is important to cultivate new technology talents and grasp opportunities brought by VR. Based on principles of integrity, pragmatism, innovation, development and win-win, this partnership with Microsoft China will be conducted with government guidance and corporate support, and is bound to benefit personnel training.”

Horace Chow, the vice president of Microsoft and COO of Microsoft China, said, “Since entering China more than 20 years ago, Microsoft has always attached great importance to investment and cooperation in education, and has maintained close relations with the Ministry of Education, universities and major educational institutions. With the implementation of national strategies such as “Internet+” and “Made in China 2025”, Microsoft believes that mastering new technologies is the key to winning in the future. By partnering with the Ministry of Education, Microsoft will create a broader innovation space for education and teaching based on Microsoft technology platform, especially the HoloLens platform.”

The projects aiming to apply VR in education include software and hardware for laboratory construction, courseware for the target groups, as well as on-site training.

VR training will be combined with VR and AR market aplications. Both sides will select proper schools to house VR laboratories. They will also conduct VR-related training to help teachers understand the latest development, to grasp the basic technology theory of VR, and to practice Microsoft HoloLens application scenarios. These projects will help transform teaching from two-dimensional and textbooks and Powerpoint slides into three-dimensional visual teaching, making learning more intuitive, vivid, interesting and efficient.

According to the plan, the Management Information Center will build VR laboratories in selected schools nationwide. Microsoft China will provide necessary resources in VR software and hardware, including training courseware, teacher training, and Microsoft certification.

This article originally appeared in ifeng and was translated by Pandaily.
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