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U of Regina students in creative technologies and design programs have new degree, diploma options

Students testing out virtual reality equipment. (The University of Regina/Faculty of MAP - image credit)
Students testing out virtual reality equipment. (The University of Regina/Faculty of MAP - image credit)

The University of Regina announced Friday that students in the expanded creative technologies and design programs will now have the opportunity to explore new degree and diploma options.

"Creative technologies and design is ideal for students who really have an interest in sort of the connections between art, design, technology and culture," said Charity Marsh, a media professor and coordinator for the program.

"You can be practice-based in your study and you can think theoretically about it. You learn to think about technology and the arts in new ways."

The diploma in creative technologies is a two-year program offered through the faculty of media, art and performance. Courses completed from the diploma can also go toward receiving a creative technologies and design degree, which is a four-year program.

The program's aim is to help students develop technical skills across a variety of formats that are adapting amid technological changes. The faculty prides itself on its small class sizes and hands-on projects that students can work on collaboratively.

Art and technology

Students will dabble in a range of platforms including virtual reality, augmented reality, 3D animation, robotics, digital storytelling, AI and computer game design.

"VR is certainly about education and learning and we know that we see virtual reality being used, for example, in medical and health studies," said Marsh.

"Students from all different areas come together and they learn to sort of talk across the disciplinary languages. They learn to talk to each other and build and make together and they push each other, right, in different kinds of ways that are really important for the learning process."

Students engaging with augmented reality art made in one of the Creative Technologies courses.
Students engaging with augmented reality art made in one of the Creative Technologies courses.

Students engaging with augmented reality art made in one of the Creative Technologies courses. (The University of Regina/ Faculty of MAP)

The University of Regina was the first university in Canada to originally launch a creative technologies program. The new degree programs are unique in Saskatchewan and across the Prairie provinces.

"It's a really exciting time for students to be in creative technologies and design at the University of Regina. We are just taking on all of these new technologies and even old technologies and just being innovative and curious and experimenting and really being playful," Marsh said.

David Dick, dean of the faculty of media, art and performance, says the addition of the program will open many doors for future careers.

"Our students are serious about gaining skills as artists, developers, designers, scientists, theorists, entrepreneurs and practice-based scholars," Dick said in a news release issued Friday.

"They learn to think about technology and the arts in new ways, and thrive in the exploration of digital culture."

The creative technologies program is interdisciplinary, meaning it is open not only to MAP students, but to those in other areas of study too, such as students in computer science, engineering and arts.

"Students explore digital culture while working in and with interactive media and installation," said Marsh.