Robust welding program gets stronger
Carla Carmody, who has been teaching welding and welding fabrication courses at River Valley High School in Spring Green, Wisconsin, for the past 22 years, admits she was initially skeptical of the Miller® AugmentedArc® Augmented Reality Welding System.
“The first time I tried it, I got up and walked away and thought, this is a toy…an expensive toy,” she explained. “I can’t see the benefits of having it.”
But it wasn’t long before she turned into a believer.
“We were lucky enough to receive a grant,” said Carmody. “And after I started setting it up, my eyes opened wide and I was like, this is such a unique teaching tool. It shows you everything in real time: what you’re doing wrong, what you’re doing right. I just think this is so valuable for the students to get this information as they are welding.”
AugmentedArc is not meant to replace traditional welding — it’s meant to be a training tool so students can learn the basics before live arc welding. It provides immediate objective feedback so students can correct errors on their own.
“I have students coming in, day after day, during study hall and just sitting and welding with the systems. Upper-level students are constantly going back and forth between the machine and the shop to perfect their techniques,” Carmody said. “Students love these machines.”
An efficient and cost-effective option for schools and students
When you’re teaching a skill like welding, there’s nothing like hands-on experience. But it’s impossible for instructors to be with all students all of the time.
“With these machines, the students are able to get feedback instantaneously,” Carmody said.
After using the machines, students are far more productive once they get into the shop.
“I have introductory welding students who are getting the idea before they ever step foot into the shop. They are laying better beads as a first-time student, so they are not wasting any materials as they are learning the basics,” Carmody said.