App 7: Aurasma

9 December 2015


What is Aurasma?

aurasma example

Augmented reality at Buckingham Palace.  Image from


Aurasma is an augmented reality app that uses your smartphone or tablet to put layers of information or interactivity on top of real life objects.  The layers can be videos, animations, links to websites, written information, audio files. What this means is that, with a little imagination, you can create or enhance resources by adding multimedia information accessed by pointing a mobile phone camera at the resource, allowing for situated, self-paced learning.

How to create an augmented reality resource using Aurasma

Once you have the multimedia you need, creating a resource is very quick as you use can photos or videos directly from your smartphone or tablet:

Augmented reality in practice

Leeds College of Music has used augmented reality in the recording studio to facilitate a more immersive learner experience. Launched in 2015, augmented reality provides information about the mixing desks, allowing students to learn and to support themselves outside of contact teaching hours. Read more about the Leeds College of Music Augmented reality Project

 Ideas for using Aurasma in education

  1. Schools have been making use of the Aurasma app by creating posters with images which come to life or reveal further information when a mobile camera is pointed at them.
  2. Use in labs, kitchens, studios or other technical environments to provide information about the equipment
  3. Enhance the content of text books by overlaying pages with video or additional content.  Especially useful on topics students find difficult or need extra support.  One school in Portugal did this in music


available on the app store resized get it on google play resized

Aurasma is also available on your computer

Activity 1 – Test drive the app

  1. Download the app
  2. Load it up and create your account on Aurasma
  3. Take out a £10 note and view it the reverse side through Aurasma.  What happens to Charles Darwin and the humming bird?

Activity 2 – Check out ready made “Auras”

  1. Log into and click on Explore
  2. Use the Aurasma app on your phone or tablet to bring the images on the site to life

Activity 3 – Make your own “aura” from the library of aura overlays

To make your own augmented reality resource.  You’ll need an image and a corresponding overlay. The overlay can be a video or an image of your own, or you can choose from the library of overlays in the mobile app.

Did you know…

Aurasma license their software for use by companies in their own apps. One of the companies that use Aurasma is the comics company Marvel, who have a number of special effects embedded in their comics. Look out for the titles with “Marvel AR” on the cover.

You can activate these by using the Aurasma app directly or by downloading Marvel’s AR app.

 What do you think?

Is this app useful for you? How do you use it? Do you know of an app that does the same thing but better? Any tips for us? Share your ideas by leaving a reply below, or tweet us @UWL12apps or use the hashtag #UWL12apps



Written by Andrew Hoang, TEL Systems Manager at the University of West London. Andy is a dedicated carnival dancer and postcard fanatic and blogs at




Creative Commons Licence 12 Apps of Christmas by the University of West London is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

4 thoughts on “App 7: Aurasma

  1. Hi Farzana, thank you for sharing this interesting video. It’s so valuable to get examples of real practice. We’ve got a Nursing department here and I’d love to share it with them! Anna


  2. Pingback: Augmented Education – LEARNING HUB

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