WVU Parkersburg engages in groundbreaking 3-D virtual reality program for simulation-based learning.
CONTACT: Dr. Rhonda Richards, senior vice president for Academic Affairs, 304-424-8242.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The familiar Star Trek phrase “Beam me up, Scotty,” has new meaning at West Virginia University at Parkersburg.
Rendering of 3-D room model
WVU Parkersburg is utilizing a visualization software to create and incorporate three-dimensional interactive content into the college's current Drafting and Digital Animation programs.
"The new technology allows student content developers to produce a virtual image that can be viewed through 3-D glasses and appears as the actual, real object," Dr. Rhonda Richards, senior vice president for academic affairs, noted.
College officials at WVU Parkersburg believe the technology has great potential for a variety of training applications.
“For example, students will develop skills for using the technology as part of the Drafting and Digital Animation programs," Dr. Richards noted. "Once they acquire the skills, they will be prepared to develop animation or interactivity for 3-D environments for entertainment or training purposes.”
"Additionally, this new skill set of developing interactive 3-D content will help begin to meet a nationwide workforce gap for these high-paying, high-impact jobs which are mostly being outsourced to other countries," she added.
At WVU Parkersburg, the 3-D program is also being examined for training purposes for the college's Machining, Solar Energy, and Nursing programs.
“One advantage to the 3-D virtual training aspect is that if you learn a process using 3-D interactive images, you can make mistakes with a virtual piece of equipment and not suffer the catastrophic consequences that you might in a real world setting," Dr. Richards said.
"Plus, one can utilize the interactive learning object(s) repeatedly until reaching a near-mastery level and easily transition to immediate and effective utilization when placed on-the-job with the 'real object,'" she continued. "In other words, students can learn the pitfalls without the danger of downtime or harm.”
One such learning application for the 3-D software will be utilized in a special topics course entitled Holograph Applications being offered this fall.
Rendering of house model.
Assistant Professor Laura Kerbyson will teach the course in which students will be able to envision a complex architectural project.
"Students will assemble a virtual house, bring it into the 3-D software, re-texture and re-colorize objects, make objects have interaction and be able to do a virtual walk through the house via a constructing software application," Kerbyson noted.
The college is partnering with EON Reality Inc., of Irving, CA, a virtual reality technology provider for business and education.
The EON software offers the ability to incorporate interactivity for 2-D or 3-D visualization solutions into learning applications and learning environments using simulation based learning (SBL), noted M
arly Bergerud, EON's vice president for education development.
"Interactive 3-D SBL is a means for seeing objects and reviewing complex concepts and/or processes in a three-dimensional, interactive environment," Bergerud said.
"SBL may be an object embedded in a PowerPoint presentation, a learning module embedded into an e-learning course or integrated modules covering an entire course that allows a learner to be actively engaged in the learning experience by moving them from an isolated, high-end static tech center to an engaging, scalable, Internet-connected network,” she explained.
Questions regarding the 3-D visualization program may be directed to Dr. Richards at 304-424-8242.
cd7/12/10For additional information, contact:
(304-424-8203 - Office)