Turku University of Applied Sciences – joining Unity Academic Alliance

Turku University of Applied Sciences is the first Finnish University to join the UAA!

Background

TUAS research group Futuristic interactive technologies have years of experience in research and collaboration for utilizing game technologies in various domains such as healthcare, technology industry, and tourism. We have utilized the Unity game engine for over a decade in gaming education and RDI activities. In the above-mentioned domains, we are utilizing XR technologies. From a research point of view, we typically apply user-centric and rapid prototyping principles. While testing solutions we focus on usability, and user experience studies and just lately more and more intensively also in effectiveness studies.

Because of COVID-19, we are asked to develop solutions for vocational and professional training. Together with our industrial partners, we aim to find solutions for hands-on training with authentic devices. We have seen that virtual reality is a promising technology to be used in simulation in challenging or even hazardous conditions or with expensive equipment. Just to name some examples we are focusing on developing innovative training solutions for ship command bridges (Markopoulos et al., 2020), and for fire safety (Oliva et al., 2019). Just lately we have also focused on finding alternatives for teleconferencing. More advanced solutions with social communication tools are needed for example in virtual exhibitions, and virtual conferences (Markopoulos P. et al., 2021).

We have cooperated with neuroscientists since 2015 when we started our cooperation in the research areas of virtual reality in driving inspection (Izullah et al., 2021). Just lately we have invested intensively (around 0.5M€) in VR, AR, and AI. This investment includes NVIDIA DGX-1 supercomputer, Leica BLK 360 laser scanner, over 50 VR headsets etc. We have for example almost ten VR headsets from Varjo which is at the moment manufacturing the most sophisticated VR headsets with bionic display, hand and eye-tracking sensors. Neuroscientists are more and more needed because of this technological progress. We have now devices (Varjo headsets) that can be used to monitor user behavior in virtual training and in virtual assessments. Combined with the iMotion platform (incl. various biosensors) we have a wide range of metrics available to understand better users’ decisions while training. At the moment we aim to compare above mentioned behavioral data with performance data collected during the gameplay (Markopoulos E. et al., 2021). Our performance monitoring system is designed based on neural networks – that is to say, we are using machine learning to train the system to detect mistakes (compared to ideal performance).

As already mentioned we have studied social communication in virtual exhibitions and conferences and how to apply avatar technologies in the metaverse context (Luimula et al., 2021). Our intention is to develop our own metaverse technology utilizing Unity, Mirror, and Data-oriented Technology Stack (DOTS). We have already been able to create a solution where tens (maybe even around 150) of trainees with VR headsets are able to participate in the same virtual training session. For us, the metaverse is a combination of social communication, hands-on experience and digital twin integration.

Why have TUAS joined the Unity Academic Alliance?

We have started game research in Turku already early 2000. Turku Game Lab in turn has been founded in 2009 as one of the first Finnish game labs owned by higher education institutes. Unity has been the main engine from the very beginning. Our game lab graduates have worked for Unity Ltd (Veli-Pekka Kokkonen  & Juha Kiili – responsible to launch the first version of Unity 2D tools). We have quite large industrial cooperation with Finnish game companies. For example, Supercell cooperated with us while beta testing their Gunshine game prototype in 2010. Our graduates are nowadays widely working in significant positions or as entrepreneurs in the Finnish game industry.

Most of our industrial partners are using Unity for either entertainment games or applied game technology solutions. From RDI perspectives we can easily claim that Turku is one of the leading technology industry regions and Health Technology regions in Finland. And our university is one of the leading applied research institutions in Finland utilizing game technology in various domains. We have for example won various scientific awards (e.g. IEEE, Springer, and ACM conferences) and also the best-applied game award for 2018 in Finnish Game Awards 2019.

By joining the Unity Academic Alliance, we ensure

  • Validated learning and competence material for Unity for Unity Educators
  • Networking, development training and preparation to become Unity certified
  • Boost the B.Eng program with Unity certification and improve the possibilities for better chances for internship and  final thesis topics
  • Improve the value in labor market of the graduates via Unity certification

Find Turku University of Applied Sciences here:

https://www.tuas.fi/en/

https://www.linkedin.com/school/turku-university-of-applied-sciences/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yNrURCT9ZNU

Powering an equitable workforce with immersive learning | Unity for Humanity

In October, Unity hosted its Unity for Humanity summit 2021. This fully virtual, one-day summit celebrates creators around the world who are using real-time 3D (RT3D) to make a positive impact on society and the planet. In one of the sessions, we heard from two innovative ed-tech founders who are leveraging real-time 3D to transform workforce upskilling and learning.

At KnowledgePoint, we’re really passionate about discussing and promoting the up- and re-skilling of the workforce to provide for the emerging jobs in the immersive sector. Through our work with learning
organisations around the world, including Unity, we can see the economic potential of immersive technologies, but this is not widely reflected in the strategies, priorities, and investment plans of governments, businesses, or educators. We believe the challenges facing the immersive sector are much more nuanced than those facing the digital industry as a whole.

Watch the full recording of this session from the summit here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44G9JCzWj5Q.

Check out our Immersive Skills Storm report with research we’ve commissioned from Infrabee, which looks at the gathering storm facing the immersive economies across Europe.

New Unity Authorized Training Partner Program Member – Be Licensed

We are happy to announce that Be Licensed has joined the Unity Authorized Training Partner (ATP) program, authorized to offer Unity Authorized Workshops and Certification Exams on behalf of Unity Technologies. 

Training partner logo

As Sweden’s premiere media production training company, Be Licensed is a provider of certification courses for our partners Apple, Adobe, AVID, Blackmagic Design and LearnQuest.

Their statement on joining:

“We see now more and more of an overlap between both the concepts and techniques contained in traditional postproduction with the utility and workflow in Unity for VFX and game design, so for Be Licensed it became a natural ambition to be able to offer the great Unity course catalog and certifications to our customers.

We are now happy to say we have been invited to join Unity’s Authorised Training Partner program. We’re looking forward to seeing newly certified Unity users establish themselves more and more as a valuable resource in the constantly growing market for game design/graphics, VR experiences and post-production, here in Sweden and abroad.”

We are looking forward to offer all Associate level Unity certification courses to our customers and clients.

Johan Alpmar (CEO)

Follow them on social media here:

https://www.linkedin.com/company/be-licensed/

https://www.facebook.com/Be.Licensed/

https://www.instagram.com/be.licensed/

New Unity Authorized Training Partner Program Member – Symetri UK

Symetri - Unity ATP

Symetri has joined the Unity Authorised Training Partner (ATP) program, authorised to offer Unity Authorized Workshops and Certification Exams on behalf of Unity Technologies. With its expertise in the construction and manufacturing industries, Symetri is all about helping its customers to improve their capabilities and capitalise on technologies that allow them to work smarter.

As per our recent Immersive Skills Storm insight report, sectors including architecture, engineering, and construction are adopting immersive technologies as they’re proven to boost efficiency and deliver productivity gains. Businesses are calling for people with the skills to match.

With its proven experience in 3D-modelling and simulation, PLM (Product Lifecycle Management) and BIM (Building Information Modelling), Symetri is a perfect fit for the ATP program.

Tomas Karlsson, our Head of Channel Services says: “We’re looking forward to working with the team at Symetri as it supports its partners in developing competence in Unity Technologies skills, a key component in the further adoption of immersive technologies and a driver of economic growth.”

New UAA member – AIV – Italian Videogames Academy

AIV is one of UAA’s newly-joined partners and is Italy’s first Unity Academic Alliance partner

AIV – Italian Videogames Academy was founded in 2004 in Rome. AIV is the first Italian institute of higher education in the video game field and trains about 400 students/year with three-year courses in Programming, Graphics, and Game Design, plus the new courses of Animation & Rigging and Narrative design and a two-year course in Music for Video Game, a 1st Level Master in Music for Video Game in collaboration with the “S. Cecilia” Conservatory, 10 workshops a year with the best international developers.)    Throughout over fifteen years of activity, his students have found employment in some of the most important Italian and foreign software houses, including Sega, Ubisoft, Sony, Ninja Theory,  Techland, Remedy Entertainment, CD Projekt Red.


In 2006 AIV received the Certification of excellence in the video game field by the Minister for Innovation and Technologies Lucio Stanca. 


In Italy, AIV has collaborated with the University of Rome La Sapienza, the University of Verona, and the Rome Libraries Association and is the only training institution to collaborate with the Games Career Fair.
   

Since 2018, AIV organizes and runs the LEVEL UP – Rome Developer Conference, one of the leading international conferences on video game development, virtual simulations, and interactive works in Italy, gathering over 50 professionals from 3 continents and 15 countries with an audience of over 2000 people every year. In a few years, the event has established itself as the brand new international event of the video game industry, based on:

– respect and trust with international top professionals game developers

– a wide network of schools, institutions, and other Italian companies in the field

– a great request coming from the above-mentioned subjects

Starting from 2020, due to the successful experience gained with the first editions of the international “LEVEL UP Rome Developer Conference”, AIV has developed a new complementary strategy dedicated to the expansion of video games and the digital sector at the local and national level – the first training conference entirely dedicated to Italian schools, as regards students and professors: LEVEL UP – School Days. The event led some of the major Italian politicians and entrepreneurs involved in economic and digital development to talk about video games.

“The Italian Academy of Video games (AIV) has been funded with the aim of sharing the best knowledge and promoting high quality education, that ‘s why we are proud and honored to be part of the Unity Academic Alliance. The effort in making our best for our students brought us to join this exclusive community and be partners with one of the most advanced game engines. We would like to thank Unity for this amazing opportunity and we as AIV will carry on this new adventure with dedication and passion.” 

AIV – Italian Videogames Academy

Be sure to check AIV out on all of their social media platforms below!

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/aiv01

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/aiv01

Linkedln: https://www.linkedin.com/school/aiv/

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCabJj7b5YEALRICItSqovCw

Twitch: https://www.twitch.tv/aiv01

Unity Certified Instructor program

The Unity Certified Instructor program recognizes professional trainers who have demonstrated excellence in both Unity skills and teaching proficiency. 

At KnowledgePoint we support these instructors in their journey to graduation e.g. by organizing dedicated Train the Trainer bootcamps facilitated by Master Unity instructors and by bringing the instructor community together in a dedicated LinkedIn group where they can exchange notes and best practices on all things Unity & exam preparation.

This month we would like to congratulate our new Unity Certified Instructors employed by our Unity Authorized Training Partners.

 France (3W Academy & F3DF), Belgium (Cybernetic Walrus), and Hungary (3dHome

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