Mount talk to examine virtual reality in the classroom

January 18, 2017

Elizabeth Cappello, Mount Saint Mary College adjunct art professor, will kick off this semester’s Investigating Research on Campus (iROC) series with “Virtual Reality in the Art History Classroom” on February 2 at 12:45 p.m.

The talk will take place in the Kaplan Family Library and Learning Center at the Mount, 330 Powell Ave., Newburgh. It is free and open to the public.

The concept of virtual reality has enjoyed a boom in the last few years. Cappello will highlight examples of incorporating this kind of experience in the art history curriculum. She will also explain basic fundamentals of virtual reality as it exists currently.

“Using Google Glasses in a virtual reality environment, students are experiencing art history in an incredibly vivid and connected way,” explained Cappello. “In the Fall 2016 semester, I began using virtual reality as a way to increase student engagement with a subject some are learning for the first time.”

There will be several Google Glasses for attendees to try. All that is needed is a cell phone and the apps Google Cardboard and Google Street View for optimal viewing.

Cappello has been an adjunct at the Mount for five years in digital art and, most recently, art history. She works in technology for the Newburgh School District and is pursuing a Masters of Fine Arts in New Media and Web Design.

The goal of iROC is to “provide a forum for Mount faculty, staff, and students to showcase their research endeavors with both Mount Saint Mary College and the local community in a manner easily understood by attendees,” explained series coordinators Evan Merkhofer, assistant professor of biology, and Jennifer Park, assistant librarian for access and outreach services. Presentations include research proposals, initial data collection, and completed research projects.

Mount Saint Mary College is ranked a Top-Tier University by U.S. News & World Report, and offers bachelor’s and master’s degree programs for careers in healthcare, business, education, social services, communications, media, and the liberal arts.