Extended reality: U-M online courses make XR accessible to everyone

By | December 15, 2020
female student wearing VR headset using hand conrollers, monitor in background
(U-M Center for Academic Innovation)

A new three-course online specialization on extended reality developed by Michael Nebeling, an assistant professor with both the School of Information and the College of Engineering, and a team at the U-M Center for Academic Innovation has something for everyone—from novices to the most advanced users, designers, and developers.

Extended reality, or XR, is the term for technology that encompasses virtual, augmented and mixed reality—and it is the focus of a major initiative the university announced one year ago. The specialization on Coursera called “Extended Reality for Everybody,” has a broad target audience, which reflects Nebeling’s philosophy that this technology need not be overly complicated or expensive.

“I really enjoyed putting the knowledge and experience I have gained over the last five years doing research and teaching in this space into this MOOC specialization,” said Nebeling. “It really brings together a lot of different perspectives, from critical design and design thinking, to hands-on working and developing with these technologies.”