Yesterday, I had the pleasure of meeting with Gav Cross. A former colleague of mine and a drama specialist, Gav is also a director and storyteller. He is active on the stand-up comedy circuit.
Gav is also Director of User Experience at ‘4D creative’ (based at Media City in Salford Quays). This relatively young, multi-award winning company, design and install immersive learning environments. The environments employ state of the art yet simple to use technology that can quickly set the mood and provide a creative springboard for any lesson. A core aim is to raise attainment and deepen understanding of complex topics through interactive, experiential learning. Stimulating learning environments are created through LED lighting, giant projection and surround sound and 4D Creative continually develop a vast array of inspiring photos, videos and audio and educators can instantly create bespoke immersive settings personalised to their student’s needs. Content is arranged thematically and the easy-to-use, intuitive control software allows educators to develop their own, unique, environments too. A relatively recent development is the 4D pop-up, an inflatable immersive learning space. Currently, 15 of these are being used in schools and colleges and, at this time, there are 53 permanent installations across the UK.
The main purpose of our meeting was to share my initial research questions (which are at an early stage) and to discuss how I might work with Gav, his wider team and those educators who are working with immersive learning environments – particularly those professionals who work in an 11-18 mainstream school setting.
Over lunch, we shared our thoughts and explored the many possibilities that this piece of long-term study could develop. Gav was able to signpost me towards a number of educators to follow on twitter and he gave me advice about twitter filtering (Tweetdeck app). I was then introduced to Pete (Communications and marketing manager at 4D creative). Pete was equally enthusiastic and I will look forward to working with him over the period of my EdD studies. At this point in time, we were not able to identify research that related to my focus area – the search continues!
We identified enormous potential for the study to be mutually beneficial and Gav emphasised that I could continue to ask challenging questions as our professional relationship develops across my doctoral study journey.
A brilliant, inspiring three hours. Thanks to Gav and Pete. I left with more questions than I had arrived with!
Do have a look at their work, it’s fantastic! http://4dcreative.co.uk/
[I meant to say at the top…. Gav’s also a personal and highly valued friend].
The 4D pop-up immersive learning space