London College of Communication has announced the launch of a new Virtual Reality degree range in response to growing demand within the creative and tech industries. The new course is one of the first in Europe. It joins a small but growing number of specialist degrees focusing on VR.
“As more film and media companies experiment with VR content, we’re seeing increased demand from the wider industry for skilled virtual reality experts. This is why it’s so exciting to open these two dedicated courses at London College of Communication.” explained Ana-Despina Tudor, course leader of MA Virtual Reality.
What does this mean for the VR industry?
Lead Developer for Laduma Tommy Pickersgill said ‘I think this is fantastic news for the VR industry. It’s one which is developing so quickly. It’s vital there are talented people coming out of university equipped to take on these jobs. We need them in the UK to work for companies such as ours. Otherwise the work will go to companies elsewhere in the world. Higher education should better reflect the demand of employment. VR is definitely a growing space which is crying out for young and talented developers and creatives.’
The VR industry is growing at a fast pace, with the marketsize of virtual reality hardware
and software projected to increase from 2.2 billion U.S. dollars in 2017 to more than 19 billion U.S. dollars by 2020 according to Statista
Alex Kunawicz VP of Strategy for Laduma said ‘Universities in the UK are already home to some fantastic cutting edge research into VR, AR and MR. This course looks like it will provide a fantastic base for some of the technologies. Hopefully this will help to continue the standardisation of what makes good VR.
‘The most exciting thing is that – with the way the market and tech are developing – what’s taught on this course will develop year-on-year.’
Will other universities follow suit?
There already other universities in the UK offering similar courses such as University of West England Bristol’s MA Virtual Reality Degree and Glasgow School of Art’s BSc (Hons) Games and Virtual Reality course. There are many other universities around the country offering Virtual Reality as a module within media and production degrees.
It won’t be long before we see similar specialised courses in the likes of Augmented Reality and other immersive technologies.