Building a Six-Month Virtual Reality Training Program
I co-founded the Udacity VR program with Christian Plagemann, who previously co-founded Google’s VR program. Working together, we assembled a team and launched the program in September 2016.
Developing a VR Educational Product from Scratch
Initially, I formed the Udacity VR team with Christian and took the role of Curriculum Lead. Afterwards, I took on the Product Lead role to grow and stabilize the program. Now, it is successful with positive feedback and student outcomes.
We formalized and announced a Unity partnership on October 4, 2017.
I teach most of the first two courses in the Nanodegree. Subjects covered include the history of VR, tracking technology, 3D scene development, materials, lighting, and performant shading.
Students learn VR topics from industry professionals. We partnered with Samsung, HTC, Dysonics, Unity, and more.
In order to graduate, students must complete at least eight graded VR projects. We worked hard to make them fun and exciting.
Udacity has a content development process that is fairly rigidly defined. We go through several rounds of outlining, scripting, and pre-production before producing any content. There is a large of amount of feedback and revision. It was really inspiring to work with the team to incorporate this process into our VR program.
My contributions to this project have been in content development, leadership, partnership, and staffing. Over time, I became more involved in partnerships and growth and less involved in the day-to-day content creation process.
I'm proud that we created the world’s first long-form modern online VR training program.
Keywords: Virtual Reality, Education, Leadership, Unity, Partnerships, Writing