Visual Literacy and VR Technology: Innovative, Non-traditional Tools for Your Training Toolkit

Visual Literacy and technology are creating new opportunities for more impactful, immersive and experiential employee engagement and development processes in organizations.

On April 15th at 1 pm CT, Doug Pontsler, chairman and managing director of COVE: Center of Visual Literacy, and Jennifer Lastra, CEO of 360immersive, presented a webinar on how you can invigorate your engagement and development processes for employees using Visual Literacy’s critical thinking skills and virtual reality technology content created by 360immersive.

According to a 2020 survey by the Consumer Technology Association, 240 business leaders said effective communication skills (85%), problem-solving (83%) and critical thinking (83%) are in high demand at their companies. Three in four respondents (75%) say it is difficult to find candidates with the right skills and abilities today. More than half (58%) of respondents say their company does not require a college degree for all the positions being recruited.

COVE’s Visual Literacy training was established to improve safety-related hazard recognition, but its critical thinking skill-building can be applied in any department or to any employee position in an organization. Using Visual Literacy methodologies, training participants how to learn to slow down, even just a bit, and realize that our experiences, expectations and biases influence what we see and how we interpret the world around us. Visual Literacy tools and techniques give us a new way to observe and derive objective understanding and insight regarding an assignment, a problem, a goal in any environment we find ourselves in. This understanding and insight comes from learning how to describe, analyze and interpret – how to deconstruct — what we see when presented with an assignment, problem or objective. This enhanced situational awareness enables better communication and problem-solving. Improved critical thinking. Visual Literacy helps us See the Whole PICTURE® and our ability to contextualize and comprehend when interacting with any environment or assignment.

Technology, specifically virtual reality training, takes situational awareness and critical thinking to a new level by immersing individuals in environments customized to specific organizational requirements. Virtual reality enables individuals to fully concentrate all their senses in the present moment. This experience improves an individual’s mindfulness, emotional intelligence and emotional literacy. Learners fully experience what is happening in their environment, what they hear, how they feel, and what the “inner voice” in their head is telling them about the situation. Possessing this new orientation, individuals are more creative, adaptable and confident.

With 20 years of service, 360immersive remains committed to making virtual reality software available in an affordable manner. To accomplish its mission, 360immmersive launched VR for the Masses® with a goal to promote experimentation of the technology by reducing common constraints related to budget-, customization-, and distribution-related issues.

Organizations can easily supplement their traditional training materials with VR experiences that integrate with existing learning management systems, or via a standalone software application. Most importantly, the VR simulations can be consumed with or without the use of a virtual reality headset. Memorable and engaging content can also be experienced with keyboard and mouse interactivity for laptop/desktop deployment.

As with visual literacy, VR simulations allow learners to practice the foundational elements of workplace safety. This includes computer-generated environments with potentially unsafe work conditions for self-exploration to test for situational awareness and hazard recognition competency. To develop emotional intelligence, communication and empathy soft skills, interactive 360-degree video simulations place learners right in the middle of a sensitive situation. What better way is there to safely prepare a workforce for different types of interactions without fear of negative or costly consequences?

Increase your knowledge about these engaging, interactive and innovative non-traditional tools for your training toolkit.

Watch Webinar: Innovative Tools For Safety Training: Visual Literacy And Virtual Reality

Dave Johnson

Dave Johnson has been a magazine chief editor, writer, reporter, researcher, analyst, and public speaker in the safety industry for over 40 years. He co-wrote a book on patient safety in healthcare, interviewing physicians, nurses and patient safety advocates; as well as edited books on organizational psychology, behavioral psychology, safety for supervisors, and humanistic behaviorism. Dave is now principal of Dave Johnson’s Writing Shop and develops thought leadership pieces on behalf of COVE.


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