As technology continues to evolve, it is of vital importance that the skills and content that students are being taught, also remain current. For students to have the best chances for success in the future they need to know what is possible and what opportunities modern technology affords them. One such program that the Monash Tech School utilises is Unity.
Unity is primarily a game designing software but, due to its extensive range of tools and functionality, it can also be used as an all-in-one editor and creative hub for 3D and 2D artists, designers and developers. Some of the software’s capabilities include animation, lighting, colour grading and 3D modelling. Students are taught some of the basics of the Unity Editor and are given the task of creating a 3D virtual reality environment, which will be inspired by patient profiles the students are given. They are then able to test and experience the 3D environments they create using the virtual reality headsets and packs that the school has.
Virtual reality (VR) is an area that has grown considerably over the last decade, with companies such as Sony and Samsung creating headsets, or retrofitting hardware to existing devices to give people immersive digital reality experiences.
Empathy plays an important role in design thinking because it allows the designer to truly understand and discover what the latent needs and emotions are of the people we are designing for. At this stage, much of the development for VR has focused on video games or multimedia experiences, however, VR devices provide an opportunity to develop empathy towards people facing certain situations.
The idea is to demonstrate to students that there are practical links between current problems within our society and the ways that modern technology can be used to address them.
written by Scott Eddison