In this paper we present the significance of immersive virtual reality learning environment by a conducted research which emphasizes experience in learning. The case study presents the analysis and comparison of the results in students’ empathy and mastery learning between using a 360° video of a modern history topic – the World War II Kokoda campaign, against an immersive and interactive virtual world learning environment (Kokoda VR). Kokoda VR was developed to have an accurate recreation of places and events. By using photogrammetry of real locations and artefacts, in combination with animated characters, Kokoda VR places the students in the centre of the action. While each of the design techniques are not new to the development Virtual Reality Learning Environments (VRLEs), the combination and then application, created an immersive experience where students not only witness the event but also relive the experience. Participants in this study are high school and university students, who were divided into groups to use the 360° video and immersive virtual world application. Surveys and post-tests were conducted to identify how significant the enhancement is in the learners’ empathy, mastery learning and their relationship. Results show that using immersive and interactive virtual reality learning environment have significant improvement in empathy and mastery learning. The study also shows that there is a positive association between empathy and mastery learning but the results does not show sufficient evidence of a strong relationship.