Authentic Lessons for 21st Century Learning

START — Students Taking Augmented Reality Campus Tours

William Thompson, Amber Stokes, Laura Halstied, Braden Roper | Published: July 26th, 2023 by K20 Center

Essential Questions

How can augmented reality be used to engage students on college campus visits?

Learning Goals

  • Discuss the benefits of augmented reality for education and outreach.

  • Explore the START application.

  • Identify how you will use START.

Materials List

  • Session Slides (attached)

  • Strategy Harvest handout (one per participant; attached)

  • START User Guide (one per participant; attached)


10 Minute(s)

Use the attached Session Slides to guide the session. Have slide 3 displayed as participants enter. This slide prompts participants to download the START app onto their personal device.

Move to slide 4 and ask participants to respond to the questions using a personal device. After time is given to respond to each question, display the results and allow time to read through what people have shared. Ask participants to elaborate or share their thoughts. Display slide 5 to introduce the session’s learning goals.


30 Minute(s)

Transition through slides 6-7. These slides give participants a quick overview of augmented reality and K20’s process of creating START. Display slide 8 and play the video explaining the START app. Move to slide 9 and briefly tell participants how they will use the app.

Display slide 10 and have participants spend some time using the START app on campus. Provide a time for participants to return to the session after exploring the START app. 


20 Minute(s)

Once participants return from using the app, display slide 11. Have participants use a personal device to respond to the interactive 3-2-1 strategy. Participants respond with three things they learned, two questions they have, and one thing they found interesting about using START. Display the results for participants and have a whole group discussion about the experience of using START.


15 Minute(s)

Display slide 12 and pass out the START Strategy Harvest handout to each participant. Provide some time for participants to write down how they plan to use START, then have them share their idea with three other participants. Provide time for discussion about the ways in which START can be implemented to increase college campus visits.


10 Minute(s)

Display slide 13 which explains the process for getting a college campus added to the START app. Review the process with participants. Move to slide 14 and ask participants to take the survey gauging participant interest in adding their college campus to the START app. Tell participants if their college wishes to be added to the app, someone will contact them soon.

Research Rationale

A study on increasing college-going rates found that college campus visits might be the most impactful factor for schools attempting to do so (King, 2012). Research recommends that educators take students for campus tours during middle school, prior to starting eighth grade (Radcliffe & Bos, 2013; McClafferty, McDonough, & Nunez, 2002). Students’ physical experience with navigating a college campus translates to confidence in their ability to be on a college campus in the future, supporting the effect that campus visits have on boosting students’ perceived self-efficacy in postsecondary institutions (Schaefer, 2014).


  • K20 Center. (n.d.). 3-2-1. Strategies. 

  • K20 Center. (n.d.). Mentimeter. Tech tools.

  • K20 Center. (n.d.). Strategy harvest. Strategies.

  • K20 Center. (2023 May 30). Gear Up START Application Featuring OU Campus Tour [Video]. YouTube.

  • King, S. B. (2012). Increasing college-going rate, parent involvement, and community participation in rural communities. The Rural Educator, 33(2).


  • McClafferty, K. A., McDonough, P. M., & Nunez, A. M. (2002). What Is a college culture? Facilitating college preparation through organizational change. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, LA.

  • Radcliffe, R. A., & Bos, B. (2013). Strategies to prepare middle school and high school students for college and career readiness. The Clearing House: A Journal of Educational Strategies, Issues and Ideas, 86(4), 136-141.