Monash Rocks

The first step in an augmented reality journey through deep time


  • Barbara Macfarlan
  • Marian Anderson
  • Julie Boyce
  • Tom Chandler
  • Thomas Bochynek
  • Mike Yeates
  • Colin Maynard



Monash Rocks, augmented reality, geological maps


This paper describes the development of the “Monash Rocks” app - designed to bring our landscape to life through augmented reality. We describe the highs and lows of the development process, the lessons we learned along the way, and our plans for further development of the app to showcase the Monash Earth Sciences Garden and extend the space into further innovative, immersive teaching and learning experiences. The creation of Monash University’s Earth Sciences Garden (MESG), a "living" geological map of Victoria collating nearly 500 rock specimens, gave us the perfect vehicle for an Augmented Reality (AR) experience. Students and visitors to the MESG can now use the Monash Rocks App on their phones to view a 3D display that overlays the live camera feed on the device enhancing the experience of the environment, taking it to another dimension. The value in augmenting a learning environment is in its ability to pull virtual objects into real scenes (Green & Chandler, 2014, p.549), in this case expanding the physical environment through time and space on a journey back millions of years. The rock now becomes alive, telling its story and supplying information that is missing in the “real life” walk through the garden.






ASCILITE Conference - Concise Papers