Technology requirements

Check that your classroom meets the minimum technology requirements.

Minimum requirements

To get started with Ocean School, you will need:

Using a modern browser, you can access the Ocean School platform, video assets and Google Classroom materials. To use the VR activities, you will also need headsets and mobile phones.

Note - If you are using Safari on an iPad or iPhone to view a 360° video or VR experience, you will need to adjust your browser settings to allow motion tracking. For more information, see our Troubleshooting guide.

What will my students gain?

Each Ocean School Module is guided by overarching lines of inquiry and media featuring different locations, scientific concepts, and key environmental and social issues.

Ocean School activities inspire discussion and motivate action using a variety of media (e.g., virtual reality, augmented reality, micro-documentaries, 360 videos, linear videos).

Our goal is to transport learners to places they could never go, and to encourage collaboration and exploration. Most of Ocean School’s interactive activities, such as the 360 video experiences, can be done solo, while our virtual reality and augmented reality experiences are best enjoyed in small teams of 2-4.

What are AR, VR and 360° experiences?

Augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR) and 360° experiences are all found in Ocean School.

Augmented reality (AR) experiences such as Pokemon Go or Snapchat filters add digital elements to a live view from your device’s camera. Want to watch a shark swim through your kitchen?

Virtual reality (VR) devices such as Google Cardboard transport you to new environments, both real and imaginary. In a VR experience, you decide what you want to see and where you wish to go — swimming with the fishes?

360° Videos (360°) are video recordings where an omnidirectional camera films a view in every direction at once. It’s like being the passenger in a car. You can look all around you, but the driver (filmmaker) decides where to take you.

Which pieces of media use AR, VR and 360?

In your Module guides, the device requirements for each piece of media are indicated using the symbols below.

VR headsets

Virtual reality headsets are highly recommended to get the most out of the Ocean School experience.

At this time, some VR activities require iOS mobile devices, but this will change as we develop further.

If you do not have access to a classroom kit, check your school’s BYOD policy to see if students are permitted to bring their own mobile and/or VR devices.

How do I know if my phone or tablet supports AR?

Our augmented reality (AR) applications are currently only compatible with IOS.

This is temporary, and these applications will be made available in the browser on any device in the coming months.

What are the WiFi requirements?

You will need to have a minimum connection speed of 5MB/sec.

What can I do if the WiFi is too slow?

Here are some tips to help you get Ocean School into your classroom:

  • Investigate if your school network can handle the burden of many devices connected at the same time.
  • Download VR and AR applications in advance. Some applications such as the ROPOS and Phytosurge can be downloaded and used offline. Download the application in advance of the activity, as this can be time-consuming. If you intend to use the students’ personal devices, it is recommended that you have the students download the apps as a homework assignment at least a week before the activity.
  • Set up a hotspot or classroom network

Why won’t devices connect for collaborative apps like the ROPOS or Phytosurge?

Some school networks are very secure, and may prevent students from connecting devices. If this happens, we suggest setting up a Wi-Fi hotspot or peer-to-peer network. This will not use the data or wifi from one device, but allow information to be communicated between the two devices.

How do I set up a WiFi hotspot?

Some WiFi networks may allow peer-to-peer connections, so that you can connect individual devices together. Ask your school administrator about your network to find out if it allows peer-to-peer connections.

If your school doesn't have a WiFi network, or if peer-to-peer connections aren't allowed on your school network, you can set up your own in a few ways:

  • Use a router to create a new network
  • Use an Android or Apple® iOS® phone to create a WiFi hotspot