Developing a 360 Video Tour for Student and Worker Training

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Touring workplaces is a common method used to help students of occupational health and safety understand work processes, hazards, and controls.  During the COVID pandemic, it wasn’t possible to take students out to workplaces, so educators needed an alternate way to bring the workplaces to their students.  Using 360o videos and technology similar to that used by realtors to show their properties it is possible to bring the workplace to the students.  The system described in this primer allows the students to explore the workplaces on their own, with embedded informational hotspots, photos, and videos.  To allow for the independent learning of the students, the added information covers only the processes and not the potential hazards and controls, though that information could be added for other uses.  The 360o videos can be viewed from a networked computer, stand-alone computer, or virtual reality (VR) headset.  The system has many other potential uses, such as: training workers for new job tasks, training students and professionals on hazard identification, and evaluating knowledge.  The uses of the system have yet to be fully explored.

This guide was developed to help others develop their own systems by detailing the various components and steps used to produce a video.  The software and hardware products referenced are not the one-and-only products that can be used. The guide is broken up into sections by Equipment, Viewing, and Processes.

In summary, a special 360o camera is used to capture video or still scenes of a workplace.  You can then use standard video editing software to edit the video as needed and then import the clips into specialized 360o tour editing software.  In this program, you’ll build a tour using clips from different areas of the worksite and add supplemental information (text, photos, videos, pdf’s, etc.).  Next, the tour is exported to either a special viewer file, a website or VR headset and presented to the audience.