PLUS to Pilot Virtual Tutoring

January 11, 2024

Eastern’s Program Leading to University Success, PLUS, has long provided free academic support aimed at helping students meet their academic and career goals. More recently, PLUS has partnered with Curio XR, an innovative remote learning company, to provide virtual-reality tutoring and study help for students. 

As one of 23 universities accepted into Curio XR’s pilot program, Eastern students will be among the first to test the virtual reality app. 

As a part of the pilot program, PLUS initially received four Meta Quest 2 headsets which linked to the Curio XR app and allowed users to access a VR classroom. With continued participation in the pilot program, Eastern has since received two additional headsets, Meta Quest 3s. 

“It’s a virtual learning space that can look many different ways, from a grocery store to a medical room,” says Aimee Brooks, a graduate assistant who works with the PLUS program. 

The headsets and Curio XR, Brooks says, allow students to see and interact with advanced human anatomy models, build molecules, and access features like 3D drawing and 360 degree viewing. “Tutors don’t have to draw anything out. They have a perfect model to reference.”

These resources make tutoring more accessible to both tutor and student. With complete, moveable models, students are able to immerse themselves in the learning experience. “Students will be able to enter a virtual reality grocery store and interact in the language they’re studying,” says Brooks. 

While the Meta Quest headsets are currently only available at the Cheney campus, PLUS is hoping to receive additional headsets for students at the SIERR building. PLUS also plans to expand the number of sessions held through VR and continue to work with Curio XR to provide content in new areas. 

While the Curio XR app is still evolving, Eastern will give valuable feedback to shape the software while students will get access to 3D, interactive, models. 

“VR is the future of learning,” Brooks says. “This fully immersive tactile experience is statistically proven to help with memory.”

PLUS invites students to sign up for upcoming VR services, and instructors are welcome to partner with PLUS to curate virtual classrooms and review sessions. Reach out to plusstudent@ewu.edu to learn more.