A couple of days ago VRFocus reported on John Moores University in Liverpool, UK, announcing plans to launch an MA in Immersive Arts later this year. Which is fine if you happen to live or plan to move to the UK. Not everyone does or can, which is why remote, online courses are popular avenues for learning. This week virtual campus Axon Park has revealed it’ll be running a full semester course taught in virtual reality (VR).
Axon Park has begun a strategic partnership with VR First with the Unreal Engine VR Masterclass being the first endeavour. They’ve brought on board Survios CTO and Co-Founder Alex Silkin to teach the course who will also be supported by the Unreal Engine Team. Survios is well known for a number of VR titles including Raw Data, Sprint Vector, Creed: Rise to Glory and Electronauts, as well as upcoming projects Battlewake and The Walking Dead Onslaught.
Starting on 4th September and running for 14 weeks until 11th December 2019, the course is designed for expert-level developers used to Unity (or other engines) who want to learn Unreal Engine 4 of VR. Classes take place two times per week with the curriculum being project-based. Prerequisites include 3D linear algebra, C++ and access to a VR ready PC and Oculus Rift/Rift S.
“This is not just a simple online class,” commented Silkin in a statement. “This is the first class of its kind. We’ll meet twice a week in virtual classrooms and build amazing virtual reality content together. I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with VR since 2012 and contribute to the development of many innovative VR systems over these years. I want to share my experience with the community to make it easier for newcomers to break into the VR industry. I am beyond excited to help students invent their solutions for the still relatively untamed landscape of VR development.”
Thanks to the partnership Axon Park and VR First are also announcing a needs-based scholarship program providing students with low cost or free access to VR hardware and resources through their partner network of 850 universities.
“We are inviting organizations and public institutions internationally to build custom in-VR training with VR First and welcoming our VR/AR experts to become the first generation of certified Axon Park trainers,” adds Rahel Demant, COO & Academic Relations Lead at VR First. “We have already started to prepare a diverse range of in-VR courses to be available in Axon Park starting in 2020.”