Message from the future

Person looking through a stand-alone window in a dystopian landscape.

Sustainable health course

This is about Global campus’ first project, the Sustainable health course by the Faculty of Pharmacy of the University of Helsinki.

Conceived and orchestrated by Ilkka Miettinen PhD (pharm.), the course is based on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals as formulated by the United Nations. Sasa Tkalcan, on behalf of Global campus, assumed the lead in crafting a lightly gamified storyline and after a few tests using drone footage, 360° images and a VR headset Sasa came up with a few mockups which served as a basis for creating a visually striking concept for the course.

Ilkka and Sasa formed a dynamic working partnership as they collaborated on the project. Sasa, having previously worked extensively with ThingLink, was well-versed in the tool’s capabilities and thus elected it as the platform for the VR components of the course. The core concept was to build a VR environment, which nonetheless would also function on a plain screen, for an introduction in which the learner encounters a hologram and is presented with an assignment. Upon successful completion of the course, the learner is reunited with the hologram in a modified environment, where they are presented with a certificate.

Hologram of a person

The project involved filming a professor in a studio to be transformed into the hologram delivering the assignment. However, in the interest of preserving the element of surprise for prospective learners, details shall remain undisclosed. The project was completed on schedule and the course was made available online on the 10th of January, 2023.

Welcome to the Global Campus blog!

In this blog we will share what´s going on in the EdTech development at the University of Helsinki. We´ll tell what we have done – what we tested and what we learned. 

The Global campus project was launched by the rector of the University of Helsinki in 2022 to work for two goals: expanding international online learning opportunities and creating a platform for innovative EdTech experiments. The project is said to be a startup inside the university, and it is being given the freedom to do “risky” EdTech pilots. This is an opportunity to think big and boldly about how the online learning can look like in the future. For this work, the team is taking the best out of the newest technologies like extended reality (XR) and artificial intelligence (AI) and combining them with the latest research on digital learning.  

The rector Sari Lindblom encouraged the team by saying:

“We realize that not all experiments succeed, but if we never dare to try bold things and take risks, we will never learn as an organization.”

This inspires us every day to think big, and to challenge the way we think about learning.  We welcome all teachers and students to join us in redefining online learning at the University of Helsinki!