New courses put students at the cutting edge of new and emerging technologies

Monday 4 December 2017

The Schools of Music, Art and Design, and Computer Science are teaming up on a new series of collaborative project courses for Semester 1 2018. These three new courses (open to all ANU students of any ability level) will put students at the cutting edge of new and emerging technologies, centred around the development of virtual, augmented and mixed reality apps, as well as interactive multimedia installations and performances.

(1) Collaborative Multimedia Design and Performance builds on the recent successes in collaborative multimedia workshops (with guest artists Andrew Quinn, who worked on The Matrix, and Mary-Anne Kyriakou, the artist behind Sydney’s Vivid) involving students and faculty from all three Schools. Past projects have included projection mapped video on the façade of the Canberra Glassworks with a 4-channel audio installation, and a 10 month residency at the Ainslie Arts Centre pairing music students with visual artists, poets, VJs, sculptors and other Canberra-based artists.

With guidance from staff across the three Schools, students will work in small interdisciplinary groups to design and realise new art/sound installations and performances, which will be presented to the public.

Collaborative Multimedia Design and Performance will run both in Semester 1 and the autumn teaching session (as a two-week intensive starting on 2 April).

(2) Sound Design for Video Games is being introduced to compliment both the School of Art and Design’s new Introduction to Virtual Reality course (ARTV2059) and the School of Music’s new major in Composition for Film and Video Games. Students will be given an introduction to industry standard game design software, and will develop the skills necessary to complete the sound design for a video game (including virtual, augmented or mixed reality). They will have the opportunity to work individually or in small groups to realise sound design projects. No previous experience is necessary, but students are encouraged to concurrently enrol in the new Introduction to Virtual Reality course for greater depth into game design software.

Sound Design for Video Games will run both in Semester 1 and the autumn teaching session (as a two-week intensive starting on 2 April).

(3) TechLauncher is an initiative led by faculty in the Research School of Computer Science, and is being expanded to include students from Art and Music. Founded five years ago by CECS Associate Professor Shayne Flint, this program pairs groups of undergraduate students with industry partners to realise new and innovative projects.

TechLauncher is an ANU initiative which enables students from any discipline to develop the research and professional skills required to use technology to bring great ideas to life and have a positive impact on our society.

Alongside technical competence, these skills include communication and stakeholder management, critical thinking, design, teamwork (including multi-disciplinary, multi-cultural and distributed teamwork), time management and many other generic skills required by employers in industry and government as well as by the research community.

Students develop these skills by working within a context that is much broader than the ANU. They work closely with industry professionals, technology experts and entrepreneurs across the ACT to complete projects addressing complex problems in a variety of disciplines and industries, or to create their own start-up enterprises. It is this context and breadth of involvement that provides our students with a deeply engaged and effective learning environment.

Students from across the ANU can now enrol to develop and realise new tech-based projects with musicology, sound design, performance, composition and/or other music/sound components. TechLauncher projects are either one or two semesters in length. Students, staff and industry clients are all invited to submit project proposals for inclusion.

The team working on these three new interdisciplinary projects includes academics and technical officers from all three Schools: Dr Alexander Hunter, Dr Kim Cunio, Dr Sonya Lifschitz, Mr Matt Barnes, Mr Craig Greening (School of Music); Dr Martyn Jolly, Dr Kit Devine, Mr Jean-Philippe Demarais (School of Art and Design); and Dr Ben Swift (Research School of Computer Science).

Students wishing to enrol in any of these project courses should get in touch with Dr Hunter at for more information. 

Updated:  4 December 2017/Responsible Officer:  Head of School/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications