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MDM and IDEA-X Students Teaming Up On Digital Media Projects

Jul 17, 2014 By Crissy Campbell

MDM students are teaming up with IDEA-X students from China this summer to solve problems for real-world digital media clients.

The 23 students from China are here for the next month as part of the IDEA-X program, a 4-week digital media bootcamp held at the Centre for Digital Media.

IDEA-x was created for international undergraduate students wanting to learn the fundamental skills taught in the MDM program and design and build a digital media product. They learn product development strategies, project management, articulation and teamwork skills, core skills of the MDM program.

IDEA-X is also a chance for international students to experience Vancouver's digital media industry and practice their English language skills with a focus on digital media. Once they get at taste of the MDM program and Vancouver many IDEA-X students then decide to return as Master of Digital Media students.

IDEA-X students are usually asked to go through the development lifecycle for a digital media product but this IDEA-X session is different.

IDEA-X students playing improvisation games

Instead of working on their own digital media projects, this group is working directly with Master of Digital Media students on real-world industry projects.

Some of the students are working on an ecommerce project with Elastic Path, an ecommerce platform provider, to build a prototype of the retail experience of the future.

Another group is working with Chrystal CG, one of the world's largest visual effects and animation companies, to design, write and storyboard a short film to be displayed at the Youth Olympic Games Museum in China.

IDEA-X students learning digital media skills in the classroom

These projects are a chance for IDEA-X students to experience working on solving real-world problems; to work with more experienced students from different backgrounds and to experience what it’s like to take the MDM program.

It’s also a great chance for MDM students to experience working and communicating with an external team from different educational and cultural backgrounds.

Deb Mackenzie, the UX Lead for the Elastic Path project, says that it’s been a valuable learning experience.

We've found working with the IDEA-X students of particular interest for our project. Our team is dealing with projecting what the future will look like and the IDEA-X students fit into our target audience of ‘shoppers of the future.’  They gave us fresh ideas on how social media could be used, outside of our own cultural biases. Working with them also gave us a chance to practice managing an outside team and effectively communicating our requirements.

Kinggie, one of the IDEA-X students working with Deb adds:

We’re thinking about things that we haven’t before. This is a real project and maybe it can be put into reality. It’s exciting! I haven't worked on projects like this back in China. But in this project I can think by myself and solve real problems.

The IDEA-X students present their final products to faculty and the MDM students July 24th, the day before they head home to China. Perhaps a few will apply to be in Cohort 10 of the MDM Program!