MDIA 2223 - Virtual Reality Design and Development

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2020

VR (Virtual Reality), MR (Mixed Reality) and AR (Augmented Reality) are technologies that are quickly changing the way we consume media, play games, educate, and communicate. In this course, you will not only be introduced to these technologies through hands-on experience, but you will also learn key skills associated with designing and developing software for these platforms. Putting emphasis on production workflow, you will learn how to import 3D models into Unity3D and apply simple game mechanics.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code MDIA 2223
    Course Virtual Reality Design and Development
    Coordinating Unit Media
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Prerequisites 12 units of Level I undergraduate study
    Incompatible MDIA 1013
    Course Description VR (Virtual Reality), MR (Mixed Reality) and AR (Augmented Reality) are technologies that are quickly changing the way we consume media, play games, educate, and communicate. In this course, you will not only be introduced to these technologies through hands-on experience, but you will also learn key skills associated with designing and developing software for these platforms. Putting emphasis on production workflow, you will learn how to import 3D models into Unity3D and apply simple game mechanics.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Mr Steven Cook

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:
    1 Differentiate between Virtual, Mixed and Augmented Reality platforms.
    2 Identify appropriate design methodologies for immersive technology development, especially from a physiological perspective.
    3 Demonstrate foundational literacy in game engine use.
    4 Effectively categorise the benefits/shortcomings of available immersive technology platforms. 
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    1, 2, 3, 4
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    2, 3, 4
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    2, 3
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    1, 2, 3
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • Able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    2, 3
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
    1, 2, 3, 4
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    Due to the individual skill acquisition required, and the technical nature of the project material in this course, resources will be provided weekly for students. These resources will be in the form of code examples, workflow strategies, applied techniques, and websites.  Students are not only encouraged to access all resources provided, but also to foster an investigative research approach to obtaining their own resources as technical issues arise. There will be no dedicated textbook(s) or course reader(s) for this course.

    Please note: although code examples will be presented in this course, it is not a prerequisite to fully understand code, or have the ability to code from scratch. Pre-created content (including code) will provide students with everything they need to build in VR at a beginner level.
    Recommended Resources
    Students are not only recommended to access the books and websites below, but should also foster an investigative research approach to finding resources on their own as needs arise.

    Books and articles:

    • Virtual Reality Design: How Head-Mounted Displays Change Design Paradigms of Virtual Reality Worlds, Christian Stein MediaTropes, 01 September 2016, Vol.6(1), pp.52-85 [Peer Reviewed Journal]
    • Developing virtual reality applications foundations of effective design / Alan B. Craig, William R. Sherman, Jeffrey D. Will.; 2009
    • Design principles for room-scale virtual reality: A design experiment in three dimensions, Schjerlund, J. ; Hansen, M.R.P. ; Jensen, J.G., Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics), 2018, Vol.10844, pp.3-17 [Peer Reviewed Journal]
    • Virtual bodystorming: Utilizing virtual reality for prototyping in service design, Boletsis, C. ; Karahasanovic, A. ; Fjuk, A.
      Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics), 2017, Vol.10324, pp.279-288 [Peer Reviewed Journal
    Websites:

    Online Learning
    This course makes extensive use of MyUni and some external websites. All assignments are submitted via online methods. Depending on size, some project material may have to be submitted in person (via memory stick or USB drive).
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    Lectures for this course are delivered live and recorded using the university’s Echo 360 system. Lecture recordings are automatically loaded to MyUni following delivery. Tutorial classes are held in either a dedicated computer lab or within the Napier building VR lab. Readings and other materials are provided using the Barr Smith Library Digital Resources Management Service or through externally hosted websites. Assignments and course participation involve a mixture of individual and collaborative work.
    Workload

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    1 x 1-hour lecture (or equivalent) per week 12 hours per semester
    1 x 2-hour tutorial (or equivalent) per week 24 hours per semester
    4 hours assignment preparation per week 48 hours per semester
    2 hours project work per week 24 hours per semester
    2 hours investigative research per week 24 hours per semester
    2 hours reading per week 24 hours per semester
    TOTAL WORKLOAD 156 hours per semester
    Learning Activities Summary
    Week-by-week course content is available on the MyUni site and in person - when applicable to course project material - through data transfer.
    Small Group Discovery Experience
    Tutorial sessions held in the Media and VR labs form an integral part of learning in this course. Students will gain SGDE by working in a combination of whole class and smaller groups under the guidance and supervision of the Course Coordinator and academic staff. Tutorial sessions also provide an opportunity for students to receive advice and support from the academic staff coordinating the course as they complete project work.
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment Task (relevant learning outcomes) Task Type Weighting Suggested workload*
    Online Quizzes
    (1, 2, 3)
    Formative and Summative; Individual; Written 15% Approx 8-12 hours
    Reflective Essay
    (1, 2, 4)
    Summative; Individual; Written

    20% Approx 12-16 hours
    (including preparatory reading, research and experimentation)
    3D Modelling Assignment
    (2, 3)
    Summative; Individual; Graphical 25% Approx 14-18 hours
    Game Engine Final Project
    (2, 3, 4)
    Summative; Individual; VR Project Creation 40% Approx 28-40 hours
    (including data backup and transfer times)
    *Please note: this is only an estimate of the minimum expected workload for each assessment piece. As much of the assessment structure requires technical understanding, individual students may need to spend more time on unfamiliar tasks.

    Assessment Detail
    Online Quizzes: 15%. These quizzes will demonstrate formative and summative understanding of the core concepts presented in lectures and tutorial sessions.

    Reflective Essay: 20% 1,000 words. This assessment will be submitted through MyUni and will be a reflective written piece oriented around the student's own experience with different forms of immersive technology. The essay will allow students to demonstrate 1) their understanding of the different types of platforms associated with immersive technology, and 2) the design principles applicable. 

    3D Modelling Assignment: 25%. Each student will be required to demonstrate understanding of how 3D models work in game engine environments. Aspects such as poly-count, material sets and textures of 3D models will be assessed. This will be facilitated within the 'Intro to VR Design and Development Starter Project'.

    Game Engine Final Project: 40%. The final project represents the culmination of course work. Students will submit their final build and/or modifications to the 'Intro to VR Design and Development Starter Project' as per the techniques and design principles outlined within the course. Grades will be based on how well the final build of the project runs, whether or not design methodologies were implemented, and proven understanding of entry level game engine use.
    Submission
    Written assignments must be submitted via the MyUni course site. Project based assessments are submitted in person depending on size.  Feedback is provided through test responses, rubrics, comments in assignment text and in class.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy (http://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/101/) course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.