- SIAT Alumnus takes 2019 New Ventures BC top Prize
- Undergrad Alumni Spotlight: Stephanie Bourgeois
- SFU students use virtual reality to address real-world problems
- Touchpoint 2019 Design Conference
- FCAT 2019 Undergraduate Conference
- Undergrads Win People's Choice at Van UX Awards ↗
- Experiential learning embraces experts and engagement
- Design by Day, Dance by Night
- Putting Your Work 'Out There'
- SIAT Design Field Schools
- Hands-On Making with Materials Engages Students
- SFU Instructors Speak About Sustainable Fashion in CBC Interview
- Project & Story Submission
- Staff & faculty resources
SFU students use virtual reality to address real-world problems
By Tessa Perkins Deneault
SFU’s ground-breaking, interdisciplinary Semester in Alternate Realities brought together 18 students from across the university to create virtual reality experiences that address real-world problems such as climate change, mental health, data privacy, and the global refugee crisis.
Their third and final virtual reality student showcase, held on April 4 at the Surrey campus, was the culmination of an intense, 13-week, full-time course in which they were immersed in an iterative, agile and reflective teaching and learning environment.
In teams organized around common interests, the students created distinct yet interconnected virtual reality experiences related to improving the social and environmental condition by not only drawing awareness to important issues, but also providing unique, immersive, first-person experiences.
In Fit4U, participants are surprised to discover their workout session has been used as a way to farm their personal data; Aquatica shows users a potential future of plastic-filled oceans; Seige explores mental health, loneliness and the importance of strong relationships; and in Narrow Walls, users finds themselves in the back of a cargo truck with fellow refugees trying to escape reality.
Hosted by the Faculty of Communication, Art and Technology, the Semester in Alternate Realities is a first-of-its-kind course taught by Bernhard Riecke and Patrick Pennefather. More details about the unique teaching environment can be found here.