Introducing Augmented Reality in Cultural Heritage Studies

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Villarejo, Luis ; González-Reverté, Francesc ; Miralbell, Oriol ; Gomis, Joan Miquel (2014)
  • Publisher: eLearn Center Research Paper Series
  • Journal: eLearn Center Research Paper Series
  • Subject: Augmented Reality, Cultural Heritage, Education, Digital Contents, Geolocation

Augmented Reality is a technology that allows overlaid digital content into our view of the real world through the camera of a Smartphone or a tablet. Video, audio, 2D and 3D images, web and text are just some examples of the type of content that can be overlaid on our perception of the real world. This content can be associated with real world elements by means of geolocation or image recognition. Such technology has great engagement potential and is used in many fields to augment the users’ perception of the world. Cultural heritage is one of the fields that could benefitmore from this technology. This paper describes how augmented reality has been used in an educational context in order to support learning for cultural heritage students. The students taking part in this experience built landscape units in several locations in Catalonia and augmented them with digital information, creating digital Points of Interest distributed throughout Catalonia and Spain. These Points ofInterest, which constitute a mix of digital and real world information, were then published through an augmented reality browser, making them freely available to the public. Today there are more than 5,000 freely available Points of Interest that have been created by the students. The results of the experiment show that students appreciate the use ofaugmented reality in this particular context and find it useful both from a pedagogical and a technological point of view.
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