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USC Partners with La Brea Tar Pits on Augmented Reality and Education

September 24, 2018

In a new partnership between USC and the Natural History Museums of Los Angeles County, which include the La Brea Tar Pits and Museum, researchers will try to understand how best to design AR experiences for effective learning.

The project is funded by a new grant from the National Science Foundation totaling $2 million.

The research will compare learning and engagement from visitors interacting with various versions of an AR experience that differ in visual immersion (touchscreen vs. low-cost 3D headset) and interactivity (selecting vs. manipulating virtual objects).

Emily Lindsey, assistant curator and excavation site director for the La Brea Tar Pits, and Benjamin Nye, the director of learning science at the USC Institute for Creative Technologies, are the principal investigators. Gale Sinatra, the Stephen H. Crocker Professor of Education Psychology at the USC Rossier School of Education, and William Swartout, chief technology officer for USC ICT, are co-principal investigators.

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