VR educational app for dental students
Why use an educational VR application in the field of dentistry?
The Medical University of Warsaw
The Medical University of Warsaw is an academic community that respects freedom of thought and expression, equal rights, and tradition. The university’s mission is to provide the best education possible based on innovative medicine and conduct scientific research at the highest level.
This application was created as part of the “Time2MUW – teaching excellence as an opportunity for the development of the Medical University of Warsaw” project financed by the National Center for Research and Development. The managers of the “Preparation and implementation of didactic classes in the field of medicine and dentistry with the use of VR devices and applications” task are Piotr Regulski, MD, Ph.D., Małgorzata Ponto-Wolska, MD, Ph.D. and Anna Turska-Szybka, MD, Ph.D.
Creating an efficient and practical introduction to dental procedures
- The Medical University of Warsaw planned to expand its educational offer for dentistry students. That’s why the university decided to invest in a VR infrastructure for medical training consisting of five practical modules.
- The tasks presented to users include cavity preparation, fissure sealing, endodontic treatment, incision of an abscess, and identifying anatomical structures.
- Our team designed a tutorial mode for every lesson, which presents the process of each exercise and allows students to practice before taking their exam. Moreover, the Medical University of Warsaw wanted to give lecturers the possibility of monitoring students and providing support throughout the learning process mainly due to the specificity of dentistry, based on precision and learned movements.
An essential element of the VR project was implementing an educational and information platform as a desktop application. This allows lecturers to track the results of tasks performed by a specific user and save all of them in a database.
Training dentistry procedures in virtual reality means more practical learning methods for students
- The presented VR project can be considered one of the most advanced in our company’s portfolio. It required a specialized approach to programming interactions, collisions, physics, etc. Together, they create a whole experience that responds to medical requirements and physical prototypes.
- 3D graphic designers and programmers created dental tools that naturally interact with biological structures, including the surface of the teeth. One of the essential advantages of the VR application is the detailed model of the oral cavity. Its anatomical structure has been prepared to perform precise treatments without the fear of injuring a live patient.
- The virtual reality application would not be so practical and easy to use if it was created for PCs which would limit students’ comfort and prevent them from freely performing tasks. The university needed as many as 50 devices, so a PC VR setup was not viable – the school could not upgrade every PC setup to meet the VR graphic standards. As such, the Medical University of Warsaw needed a wireless VR headset that was still powerful enough to run the training application. The VIVE Focus 3 met that need perfectly.
The goal of Giant Lazer was to reflect the behavior of anatomical structures, including tooth enamel and the soft tissue of the oral cavity, tongue, and cheeks.
The training is performed using carefully designed 3D models
The model of the dental table presented here reacts to mouse course interactions and keys numbered from 1 to 5, showing different layers and the final effect.
You can immerse yourself in the world created with VR technology and see what models dentistry students use in the application.
3D graphic designers and programmers have also prepared models that imitate the human body
Our team made the patient’s head phantom in 3D technology, so we encourage you to explore it (it contains tooth loss) and see how 3D models are created in stages during the design process.
The model of the head presented here reacts to the mouse cursor and the numbered keys from 1 to 5, showing different layers and the final effect.
Defining project assumptions
Designing user journey
Preparing a prototype with interactions
Work on graphics, UI design, and mechanics
Implementation on target devices
Thanks to the VR application, an individual user’s progress is recorded. Points are scored automatically after completing each task. The application allows you to generate reports on users’ progress in CSV format from the database.
- Success # 1 | Full VR capabilities for dental students
The university has gained a complete training system for students with technology, software, user manual, and specialized tutorial for teachers who will use the solution in their classes.
- Success #2 | Realistic dentistry in an accessible form of a VR application
Giant Lazer provided a virtual reality application that uses realistic 3D models of the patient’s teeth and mouth. The application also includes complex dental tools and treatment equipment, e.g. a dental chair with accessories. Objects naturally interact with each other, giving a natural feeling of performing virtual activities.
- Success #3 | Students and their results under the supervision of the lecturer
The application includes a module that allows teachers to record all of the steps taken by students in the VR exam mode. The solution provides the possibility to analyze the course of training and individually search for difficulties in each user’s work.