What is Expeditions?
Google Expeditions enable teachers to bring students on virtual trips to places like museums, underwater, and outer space. Expeditions are collections of linked virtual reality (VR) content and supporting materials that can be used alongside existing curriculum. These trips are collections of virtual reality panoramas — 360° panoramas and 3D images — annotated with details, points of interest, and questions that make them easy to integrate into curriculum already used in schools. Google is working with a number of partners, including: WNET, PBS, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, the American Museum of Natural History, the Planetary Society, David Attenborough with production company Alchemy VR and many of the Google Cultural Institute museum partners to create custom educational content that spans the universe.
Expeditions are group experiences with a guide leading and the explorers following along. We recommend a tablet for the guide and phones with Cardboard, a virtual reality viewer, for the explorers. You can purchase a kit with the recommended devices from Best Buy Education.
If you want to put together your own kit, you can use the app with Android tablets and phones. Expeditions will run on any Android (4.4 and above) or iOS (8.0 and above) device, but multiple devices are required to use the app. The phones used with a virtual reality viewer need to meet the required specifications.
- A gyroscope and accelerometer: This is essential for determining orientation and doing head-tracking in virtual reality viewer.
- Android 4.4 or later OR iOS 8.0 or later
- 1GB ram
Even if your phones meet the required specifications, some devices may still not be able to use Expeditions. For more certainty and a better experience, we recommend some additional specifications and features.
- GPU comparable with an Adreno 330
- High resolution screen: 720p or 1080p is recommended.
- Minimum of 2GB ram, 3 or 4 would be better
- 2.4ghz and 5ghz wifi support
- VR viewer compatible screen size (check the specifications for your viewer for recommended screen size)
When you have your devices, download the Expeditions app from Google Play (for Android) or from iTunes (for iOS). The first time you open Expeditions, you’ll be offered a brief demonstration of the app. In the demo, tap Full Screen to see how the app works without a viewer.
You can incorporate Expeditions into your lesson plans in many ways. To learn more about them, see Add Expeditions to your lessons.
We're interested in hearing what you have to say about your experience with Expeditions. To send feedback, tap Menu then tap Feedback in the Expeditions app. You can also share experiences and ideas in our Expeditions Community or ask questions in the Google for Education Help Forum.
Google works with partners, such as the Royal Collection Trust, Wildlife Conservation Society, and American Museum of Natural History, to create educational content. If you’d like to make a new expedition, let us know.
If you are interested in creating and/or selling your own Expeditions kit, let us know.
Virtual reality in education
To learn more about why Google is excited about the possibilities of virtual reality in education, watch our talk from Google I/O 2016, VR in the Classroom: Early lessons learned from Google Expeditions.