Age Appropriate Use
There is growing interest among educators and parents to use XR for educational and entertainment purposes for young people.
The concept of “learning through doing” has much credence among researchers and others, and XR technologies offer unprecedented access to new experiences for all users, including children.
XR technologies, including both virtual and augmented reality — and particularly smart phone based augmented reality — is already showing great promise. Physical practice can often be more impactful than mere observation when learning a new skill.
More educators, museums and other sites are incorporating augmented and virtual reality into field trips and exhibits, implementing 3D models to explain abstract concepts such as one finds in mathematics, or using teacher created applications to better engage students. As XR technology becomes more prolific, the use cases and associated game and entertainment applications increase each day. Even in an entertainment context, use of XR introduces young people to new social environments and ensures that they will be acquainted with and able to effectively use this important emerging technology.
Although there is growing interest among educators and parents to use XR more broadly for educational and other purposes for young people, there are still many unknowns about the physiological and psychological impacts of some proposed uses of XR on children. Concerns range from the physical health and safety impacts related to the form factor, to privacy and child safety considerations implicated by the social interaction opportunities XR presents and the data upon which XR relies. The XR Association plans to undertake research and partner with well-respected organizations to explore these issues in a responsible fashion so that appropriate guidance can be developed in the future. XR Association members provide age guidance for products where applicable.