Augmented REality Sandtable's (ARES's) Impact on Learning

Report No. ARL-CR-0803
Authors: Tarah N Schmidt-Daly, Jennifer M Riley, Kelly S Hale, David Yacht, and Jack Hart
Date/Pages: July 2016; 41 pages
Abstract: The use of augmented reality (AR) to supplement training tools, specifically sand tables, can produce highly effective systems at relatively low costs that can enhance operational capabilities. The interactive and adaptive nature of these technologies support distributed training for tactical engagement and enhanced-scenario customization. The Augmented REality Sandtable (ARES) is projected to enhance training and retention of spatial knowledge and spatial-reasoning skills over traditional maps (e.g., paper map and digitized 2-D displays) by providing multimodal and multisensory learning experiences. Empirical findings from an effectiveness evaluation indicate ARES supports significantly improved landmark-identification and distance-estimation performance as compared to a paper map and a 2-D digital display of a 3-D map. Additionally, users provided high ratings of perceived utility for ARES. This report details the methods used in the effectiveness evaluation, presents the research results, and provides a discussion of benefits of an AR-training solution as well as future research regarding AR and multimodal training-system design and development for the Military.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: July 1, 2016