Virtual reality optometry lab improves student learning at Midwestern University

 
Submitted by Jill Blair-Smith
Updated 1/10/2019 7:26 PM
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  • Midwestern University's Chicago College of Optometry uses virtual reality to increase learning opportunities for students.

    Midwestern University's Chicago College of Optometry uses virtual reality to increase learning opportunities for students. Courtesy of Midwestern University

Midwestern University provides students with leading-edge technology and dedicated faculty mentors to help them become the next generation of health care professionals.

Recently, the optometry program on the Downers Grove campus began offering virtual reality simulation for students to practice disease diagnosis.

The Chicago College of Optometry provides cutting-edge simulation technology via the Virtual Reality (VR Magic) Lab, which provides students with a "virtual head" that contains three-dimensional eye models.

These virtual reality systems give instructors the ability to simulate a wide variety of vision issues that students can diagnose in a realistic simulated environment.

"The simulator exercises will be integrated with the curriculum and supplement classroom instruction. They will provide first-, second- and third-year optometry students the opportunity to examine a wide range of clinically relevant cases as they are learning the disease processes in class," said John P. Gialousakis, O.D., FAAO, Dipl. of ABO, Director of Curriculum Development and Assistant Professor at the Chicago College of Optometry.

"Using this technology, students can make a detailed assessment of ocular structures; learn to identify ocular signs of diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, and cancer; and prepare for clinical situations that they will face as third- and fourth-year students, treating actual patients at the Midwestern University Eye Institute," he added.

This virtual reality lab is one of the many examples of how Midwestern University and the Chicago College of Optometry utilize technology to enhance both student learning and patient care.

To learn more about the program, visit www.midwestern.edu.