VR/AR Design & Development Curriculum

Term 1 Courses

This course provides a critical overview of the technical and experiential histories and trends of VR and AR. VR and AR are changing the landscape of how we as humans consume content and start to examine how this will impact our world, and the cultural aspects of art, music, performance, as well as business, healthcare, and other industries exploring visualization, and sensualization techniques for industry and enterprise. Students will examine past, present and future virtual, augmented and mixed reality platforms and how they were, are, and will be used.

The curriculum covers a wide range of case studies and concepts following the evolution of all supporting technologies including visual displays for VR, AR and MR. This course includes understanding the history of storytelling, architecture, image and motion tracking, interactive 3D graphics, multi-modal sensory integration, immersive audio, IoT, games and user experience, environmental and interface design.

Examine a historical overview, current trends and future applications of VR AR.

The Human Centred Design course is focus in understanding who you are designing for and create a product that will best suit their needs. This class will provide students with the foundation for creating experiences that focus on the user’s needs, goals and behaviours. This course includes concept development, ethnography, journey mapping, storytelling, experience mapping, sitemaps, storyboarding and wireframes for interactive projects with a focus on VR/AR, and an introduction to usability testing.  In this course, students will learn the core principles of human centered design— the process of understanding their users, developing the idea and designing the content of immersive applications via wireframing, and prototyping and finally, testing with the end user. Other topics covered in this class will include concepts of information architecture, agile project management, user flow and user stories for delivering a compelling interactive project.

In this course, students will learn to work with 2D, 3D, and audio assets for VR and AR using Unity. Students will become comfortable with audio and 2D elements using the Adobe Creative Suite, and 3D models and animation using Maya, as it pertains to interactive scene development and object creation. Students will get an understanding of photogrammetry, as well as CAD file pipeline considerations for industrial applications.

This course covers the basics of the Unity3D engine as it pertains to virtual and augmented reality application development. Students will learn how to use the Unity editor to create and deploy VR and AR applications as well as a fundamental understanding of the principles of VR and AR design processes.

In this course, students start to use Unreal to develop VR experiences. Course content will focus on specific aspects of the Unreal Engine including VR interactions, Blueprint for VR, setting UE levels, optimization, and physics. Students will create small application demos in VR.

This course introduces students to the Production Process starting with project planning and research and ending with students designing and building an industry-style project using the tools and techniques that they have learned throughout the course.

Students will begin the course by focusing on team building, design documents, visual designs and technical design planning. Students will learn how to utilize the fundamental tools necessary for brainstorming, rapid visualization, and creative design as it applies to VR and AR application development.

Students will also develop and present working prototypes for three key features of their projects.

The purpose of this course is to provide the students with solid foundations in the basic concepts of programming, data structures and algorithms. The main objective of this course is to teach the students how to select and design data structures and algorithms that are appropriate for problems that they might encounter. This course offers students a mixture of theoretical knowledge and practical experience. Students will acquire knowledge about general techniques for design and analysis of algorithms as well as a collection of significant examples of solutions to representative problems. With a hands-on approach, students will learn to create a well architected program in C#, and later on C# in combination with Unity. The implementation of data structures and algorithms are carried out within an object-oriented framework. The course will consist of hands-on development of technical designs, lectures, in-class exercises and 
out-of-class assignments.

Term 2 Courses

VR/AR is poised to fundamentally transform the manner in which we interact with the world around us and the digital world. It is going to redefine how we work, play and learn. Immersive technologies provide users with real-time, virtual and contextual information to accompany their everyday sensory experiences by either overlaying their real-world environments with images, videos, 3D and other digital information or fully immersing them into a computer-generated world.

Vive Pro, Samsung Gear, Google Glass, Microsoft Hololens and the technology in everyday devices are only a part of a wave of initiatives on the brink of revolutionizing our world. In this course, students will learn fundamental concepts in VR/AR and the market trends, and begin designing and creating original applications for real world problem solving applications.

User Experience (UX) is about designing the journey of users through an experience, integrating their wants, behaviours and needs, then defining structure and flow that promotes experiential goals. This course examines the specific evolution of VR/AR and develops a vocabulary for discussing and methodologies for designing these experiences. Research, concepting, designing, wireframing and prototyping are critical tools used by UX designers. The end result is the blueprint that the entire product is built upon. Students will work through these stages and incorporate their designs into a VR/AR prototype.

In this course, students will work on client-based projects. Using what they have learned in Term 1, students will work towards creating meaningful VR or AR experiences for a target audience. 

VR/AR design and development transforms information into immersive experiences with narratives and visualizations that are relevant and meaningful to the user. It goes beyond the mere presentation of information and into defining what the information means. The need for identifying the best way to engage the audience with that information is key to developing a meaningful immersive experience. This course provides an opportunity for students to conceptualize ideas and create experiences for real-world, client-led projects. Students will work in groups and the scope of projects are tied to the size and capabilities of the team.

This course is designed to provide students with a practical understanding of real world application development through project assignments that utilize methodologies and best practices within standard AR and VR application development frameworks and project types.

In this course, students will have a deeper study of UE blueprints, physics modification, and world settings. New functions will be introduced for VR pawn. In addition, students will learn how to implement checkpoints for interactions by using the UE fundamentals from Unreal 1.

In this course, students will utilize their programming skills and learn how to access data sets and transform it into a visualized and interactive VR/AR experiences. Students will learn common data structures used by VR/AR from development through real time database operation, and how to integrate this data within different immersive platforms. Students will explore data visualization techniques and implement visualization pipelines. Particular focus is paid to working with large data sets through database APIs, querying that data for the correct information, and visualizing it effectively.

Work on your own project in a team-based environment. Explore your capabilities in developing a VR or AR application of your choice. Gain valuable development experience through meeting milestones and submitting major deliverables. You will definte your own role on the team by taking ownership of various aspects of the design and development of your application. This course concludes with a final presentation of your project to internal and external stakeholders.