It has been over a year since WesternU unveiled its J & K Virtual Reality Learning Center, located in the lobby of the Pumerantz Library. Over that year, the VRLC has a cornerstone of the College of Dental Medicine’s adaptive learning strategy, and has been used to In additional the facility has been visited by honor students from local high schools and representatives from a variety of outside organizations interested the impact of this technology on training and education. vrlc-anatomage The cornerstone of the VRLC is the Anatomage Virtual Dissection Table, which projects three-dimensional images the students can manipulate in various ways. The 300 life-size images comprising the Anatomage’s visual database are constructed from CT scans, MRI images, X-rays and digital photographs of a cadaver frozen in a block of blue gel. Using the touch screen tabletop, students can expand the size of a body part to study its details and rotate that part 360 degrees to study it from different angles. Or they can perform a virtual dissection, moving through layers of tissue vrlc-anatomage-navigatorto see the structures inside.   In April of 2016, WesternU added another dimension to the J and K Virtual Reality Learning Center (VRLC) by introducing the Anatomage Navigator. The Navigator includes a plaster torso model created with three-dimensional color printing technology, along with a high-definition display that projects multiple cross-sectional views. The stylus tracker allows the user to explore real anatomy without the need for cadavers. “By placing the stylus probe on certain structures, you can see how they relate to surrounding structures,” explains Robert Hasel, DDS, Associate Dean for Simulation, Immersion and Digital Learning in WesternU’s College of Dental Medicine. “For instance, you can look at which ribs are behind the lung tissue and where the kidneys are located in relation to the diaphragm, and at the same time see the cross-sections in three different planes.”   The Anatomage Dissection Table and Navigator are not the only learning tools available in the VRLC.  The Center also includes two zSpace Projection Systems which provide a holographic vrlc-zspace-studentvrlc-oculus-studentexploration of the upper and lower limb.  Students must wear a special pair of glasses to view the holographic image, which can be rotated, disarticulated, and manipulated in other ways using a stylus. The software was developed by fusion.tech, using 3D models and techniques pioneered at Stanford University. Complementing the zSpace units are a pair of Oculus Rift stations which provide virtual reality tours of the head, ear and hand. While these tours are not currently interactive, plans are underway to integrate LEAP motion technology so that students can interact with the virtual environment. Rounding out its extensive collection of digital anatomy learning tools are 8 iPad units which include fusion.tech’s 3D platform for viewing human anatomy. vrlc-ipads               To learn more about the J & K Virtual Reality Learning Center, use the following links: A related YouTube video can be found here: For more information on the VRLC or to arrange a tour, contact: almanzar-thumb Karoline Almanzar, Associate Director of Access Services 469-5319, or Kalmanzar@westernu.edu   Related Articles: