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Haptic Technologies to Support Learning

Haptics (from the Greek haptesthai, meaning “to touch”) involves both kinesthetic movement and tactile sensation. This active component of haptics engages the learner in making conscious decisions about what to move, how to move, and the types of manipulations that are made in a three-dimensional environment. These choices on the part of the learner are in part what makes haptics a powerful component of learning.

Throughout schooling, educators strive to create hands-on experiences in natural and simulated contexts to make learning as rich and sensorial as possible. Furthermore, educators often argue that learners need hands-on manipulation of materials in order to meaningfully understand objects and processes. This is often the rationale for using physical manipulatives to learn geometry, three-dimensional letters to learn the alphabet, raised maps ...

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