Mozilla Hubs is a web-based 3D virtual environment that allows for the creation of customizable 3D virtual spaces accessible on mobile, desktop, and XR/VR devices via a URL. We leveraged this platform to create immersive educational experiences in anatomy for students at NYU Grossman School of Medicine.

The digital space can host and display assets such as 3D models users can interact with, video, and images. Key structures were labeled and these additional assets contributed to the student interaction with and immersion in the virtual spaces. Internal links and instructions to move within the space provided sequence and organization to the content presented. Users choose avatars to represent themselves in the digital space and are able to navigate within it using their keyboard and mouse reminiscent of other PC based game environments or within an Oculus/Meta Virtual Reality headset using the hand controllers. When possible, faculty-guided training sessions in the medium of deployment were organized prior to the educational intervention to reduce user error. When multiple users are present in a given Hubs room, they can communicate by voice and text, and use a pen as a laser pointer.

These projects are the result of a collaboration with Greg Dorsainville, a creative technologist/manager of Immersive Computing, and Kristen Ramirez, anatomy faculty at NYU Grossman School of Medicine in conjunction with other anatomists, clinicians, and instructional designers. This site will chronicle the development, content, and deployment of our immersive experiences utilizing 3D modeling, animation, and staging programs and incorporating additional digital anatomy assets.

The Team

Greg Dorsainville

Greg Dorsainville, MPS

NYU Langone Health Grossman School of Medicine

Greg Dorsainville explores how new media and immersive computing can unlock the potential of both educators and learners at the NYU Grossman School of Medicine’s Institute for Innovations in Medical Education. His focus is on how Virtual and Augmented reality can expand the opportunity for experiential learning experiences.

Contact greg.dorsainville@nyulangone.org

Kristen Ramirez

Kristen Ramirez, MPhil

NYU Langone Health Grossman School of Medicine

Prior to joining NYU Grossman School of Medicine, Kristen’s academic background is in human evolutionary biology, using 2D and 3D morphometric methods to research the evolution of joint morphology related to the acquisition of bipedality in the human lineage. Kristen joined the anatomy faculty at NYU Grossman School of Medicine in 2018 where she leverages digital technologies to supplement traditional anatomy teaching modalities including the creation of custom 3D models and VR experiences.

Contact kristen.ramirez@nyulangone.org

Additional Collaborators

Victoria Harnik, PhD
  • Assistant Dean for Curriculum
  • Associate Professor of Cell Biology (Anatomy)
Michael Poles, MD, PhD
  • Assistant Dean of Medical Education for the Pre-clinical Sciences
  • Associate Professor of Medicine, Microbiology and Pathology (GI)
  • GI Section Chief, Manhattan VA Hospital
So-Young Oh, MA, MS
  • Assistant Director, Program for Digital Learning
  • Institute for Innovations in Medical Education
Kira Melamud, MD
  • Assistant Professor of Radiology
  • Content Director (Radiology)
Jillian Lieber, MA
  • Instructional Designer
  • Institute for Innovations in Medical Education
Andrew Clayburn
  • Medical Student , NYU Grossman School of Medicine
Adam Skolnick, MD
  • Associate Professor of Medicine (Cardiology)
Brian Shearer, PhD
  • Assistant Professor of Cell Biology (Anatomy)
Lucas Wozniak
  • Student Researcher, Masters Candidate NYU Tisch