Current perspectives on augmented reality in medical education: Applications, affordances and limitations (2021)
Type of ContentJournal Article
PublisherInforma UK Limited
This systematic review has been developed against a background of rapid developments in augmented reality (AR) technology and its application in medical education. The objectives are to provide a critical synthesis of current trends in the field and to highlight areas for further research. The data sources used for the study were the PubMed, Web of Science and Discover databases. Sources included in the study comprised peer reviewed journal articles published between 2015 and 2020. Inclusion criteria included empirical research findings related to learning outcomes and the populations for the selected studies were medical students. Studies were appraised in terms of to what extent the use of AR contributed to learning gains in knowledge and/or skill. Twenty-one studies were included in the analysis, and the dates of these suggested an increasing trend of publications in this area. The uses of AR in each selected study were analyzed through a lens of affordance, to identify which specific affordances of AR appear to be most effective in this domain. Results of the study indicated that AR seems to be more effective in supporting skill development rather than knowledge gain when compared to other techniques. Some key affordances of AR in medical education are identified as developing practical skills in a spatial context, device portability across locations and situated learning in context. It is suggested that a focus on relevant affordances when designing AR systems for medical education may lead to better learning outcomes. It is noted that the majority of AR systems reported in the selected studies are concentrated in the areas of anatomy and surgery, but that are also other areas of practice being explored, and these may provide opportunities for new types of AR learning systems to be developed for medical education.
CitationParsons D, Maccallum K (2021). Current perspectives on augmented reality in medical education: Applications, affordances and limitations. Advances in Medical Education and Practice. 12. 77-91.
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Keywordsempirical study; learning outcomes; literature review; medical students; systematic review
ANZSRC Fields of Research39 - Education::3901 - Curriculum and pedagogy::390110 - Medicine, nursing and health curriculum and pedagogy
39 - Education::3904 - Specialist studies in education::390405 - Educational technology and computing
46 - Information and computing sciences::4601 - Applied computing::460102 - Applications in health
46 - Information and computing sciences::4607 - Graphics, augmented reality and games::460799 - Graphics, augmented reality and games not elsewhere classified
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