On Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2020, working in small groups, the more than 150 students enrolled in Matthew Solomon's FTVM 150 course re-shot a scene from Citizen Kane with virtual cameras in a 3D-animated virtual environment for a required course assignment. This custom-made VR application was created by the staff of the Duderstadt Center's Emerging Technology Group through an ongoing collaboration with Solomon and FTVM PhD candidate Vincent Longo over the past two years made possible by generous grant funding from LSA Technology Services. Marshaling their creativity and their growing analytical competencies, students will edit "shots" exported from the VR application and combine them with their own choice of soundtracks to create alternate versions of the scene that yield something fundamentally different for viewers. The assignment leverages both new technologies and embodied collaborative learning to put critical thinking about how style shapes meaning into practice while requiring students to marshal the terminology they are learning in the course to justify their creative choices to their peers as well as their graduate student instructors.
Pictured at right (at top left and bottom right), FTVM 150 students work with the custom-made VR application; (at top right and bottom left), students prepare for their work by watching a demo of the VR Citizen Kane interface, led by Sara Eskandari of the Duderstadt Center.
Photo credit, Michael McLean and Stephanie Grau