VRmagic: Virtual Learning Experience

As Marshall B. Ketchum University evolves into an interprofessional institution, it is preparing both its curriculum and technology for the future of medical education in which technology is especially important to learning and growth for both students and the university.

Click here to watch a short video featuring this technology.

MBKU purchased new equipment for its optometry program representing the latest advances in medical technology: VRmagic Eyesi Indirect and Eyesi Direct Ophthalmoscope Simulators, which perform as their names suggest by having students look through the devices to practice ophthalmoscopy exams on virtual patients rather than on classmates or significant others. The simulators also provide consistency in learning, as no two students who practice solely on human subjects will receive the same experience.

VR Magic 1

The simulators give students a broader view of the retina — a scope that is often limited in human patients — and gives direct procedural and diagnostic feedback to fine-tune students’ skills before they perform real-life examinations. To use the indirect simulator, students use a head-worn device and hold a lens up to a 3-D model attached to a computer; the direct simulator contains a handheld lens, a freestanding mannequin head and a touch-screen computer. The simulators are loaded with case studies and pathology examples from real patients. This case-based learning method gives students confidence and competence in diagnostic capabilities and critical thinking. (Article adapted from Ketchum Magazine, January 28, 2016)

Special thanks to Dr. Joseph and Mrs. Peggy Taylor for their generosity which made the ophthalmoscopy simulation lab possible.

SNippet of Video instead of embedding

2011-641-145-CROPPED NOT COMPRESSEDFrom Jane Ann Munroe, OD, Assistant Dean of Admissions, SCCO

This VRmagic Simulation learning technology is AWESOME!  It helps students learn both direct ophthalmoscopy and indirect binocular ophthalmoscopy (a.k.a BIO), especially the latter being a difficult procedure to perform with skill and proficiency. Without it, students must learn how to do these procedures on each other, their classmates. In case you’re wondering, “No,” it is not fun to be practiced on by a new student who awkwardly must learn how to do this procedure while shining a super-bright light for an uncomfortably long time into a classmate’s pupil that must be widely dilated! Classmates have to beg and plead to get each other to be guinea pigs!

With VRmagic, now our students have a willing virtual patient who can handle bright lights and awkward student doctors for endless hours of practice. Not only that, but the system has a library of case studies and pathologies that a student doctor—even a practicing doctor—would be lucky to see in a lifetime of patient care. It gradually ramps up the degree of difficulty, which is just perfect for the newbie. It also has a learning feature which a case in the way patients present, which means the VRmagic simulator presents the signs and symptoms as they unfold so that the student doctor may work through the case, same as he or she would with a real live patient.

Best of all, students may access the VRmagic Sim Lab on their own schedule and learn at their own pace.