By Graham Hannah, Media & Immersive Team, Innovation Pillar, PVC Education & Student Experience
Published 15 May 2023
Our Media & Immersive team prides itself on the wealth of student Work Integrated Learning (WIL) placements we offer and support, now 28 since Term 1 of 2023. All placement students bring their passion into our suite of innovative projects, which become parts of UNSW courses across disciplines. And we love that each one of those projects we complete then bears fingerprints of our students, to be experienced by future students. This two-way benefit helps them learn and hone skills, often in their capstone course, while enhancing our project outputs and empowering us to deliver on a wider range of initiatives.
Giving a glimpse into that range, this term saw our student placements working on a diverse set of projects including: 360 and 4K video and audio filming at St George Hospital for a trauma room scenario; initial pilot development of integrating generative AI with VR for language learning; creation of our first proof of concept for a VR strabismus test simulation for optometry; code development for our warehouse logistics simulation, and the list goes on.
One of the benefits of this form of learning is how authentic it all is for the students. These are real projects with real clients and requirements, where the students are required to be in meetings, filming, editing, designing, coding, exploring, documenting and more.
Some of the placements are short, just a single term, while others run for a full year, which really enables them to learn new skills, get right into a project and deliver something in collaboration with the staff. It can be lots of work for the team, but very rewarding at the same time when we see how far they come.
And the benefits to the multimedia projects themselves, used by academics and other students in the courses, are invaluable. As staff, we have less of the ‘student perspective’ ourselves. Once comfortable in the placement, they can question and challenge, and bring in ideas completely out of the box.
We have seen firsthand how these ideas then resonate with students experiencing and engaging with the resulting multimedia outputs. While most of our placement students are completing their studies in software engineering, media arts, design or simulation and immersive technology, they help us deliver solutions for students and academics right across the university.
I personally love the buzz here in the office when we have multiple groups of our staff and students all working away on various projects that will each do something groovy for a course.
If you are considering introducing some innovative media or immersive experiences into your teaching, for the benefit of your students, get in touch! Our team and all our students are here to help. And do feel free to encourage students looking at a WIL placement to consider a placement with us.
Only a few of our current projects have been mentioned here, so stay tuned for future articles with more detail on these and other media & immersive projects coming up.
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