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Virtual Reality prepares Cove students for medical field

Posted Date: 03/10/2023

Virtual Reality prepares Cove students for medical field

COPPERAS COVE, TX (February 7, 2023)—At a distance, Copperas Cove High School senior Zachary Hall looked as if he was using an ink pen to draw in the air. Instead, Hall was getting hands-on experience with the human body through a computer application known as zSpace.

"I am a visual learner, and this program has enhanced my knowledge of anatomy and physiology,” Hall said. “When we explored the cardiovascular system, I was amazed because the program even shows the beating of the heart which I was able to dissect and see valves open and close in 3D. It was so life-like."

Copperas Cove High School implemented zSpace applications into its health sciences courses this semester, combining virtual and augmented reality elements. These 3D computers may be utilized for classes like anatomy and physiology, virtual dissections, forensic science, medical terminology, dental sciences, electrocardiogram labs, biology, and virtual patient care.

 “The Visible Body+ allows us to get down to a microscopic view of everything in all body systems including disease processes,” CCHS senior Bethany Vazquez said. “I believe this can spark interest in many careers in the health science field."  

Students immerse themselves with 3D visual guides to human anatomy and biological concepts. Students are able to select structures to reveal pronunciations and descriptions of everything from DNA and chromatin to organelles, cells, and plant tissues.

"I think this technology program is beneficial for students who want to pursue careers in surgery because the program allows you to dissect each system of the body,” CCHS senior Gracie Smith. “This will also help visual learners to obtain a deeper understanding of the material."

The health sciences career pathway is one of the fastest growing curriculums at CCISD as this industry continues to boom nationwide. Copperas Cove High School Health Sciences teacher Jeni Carbone-Williams said the number of certification opportunities in the health care industry continues to grow at CCHS so students are able to earn livable wages upon graduation.

“These computers are engaging and motivating for the students and will help prepare them to understand and meet the needs of the current workforce,” said Carbone-Williams who is also a licensed vocational nurse. “Students are able to visually experience curriculum that is not yet available to them or is hard to bring into the classroom such as, beating hearts and dissection.”

zSpace applications may be used in multiple areas of instruction including the arts, earth and space science, engineering, English/language arts, geography, life science, mathematics, physical science, social science, and others.

"The zSpace computers help with visual learning,” CCHS student Korey Keller said. “It's simple to understand when you have a visual to go with the information being taught."