Paweł Synowiec, PhD – study visit at the Tokyo University of Technology

Game and Virtual Space Design – innovative development of second cycle studies based on the experience of a foreign partner”,

Priority 4: Higher education and science, Measure 4.1.1. Strengthening and developing the didactic potential – Tokyo internship. 2014-2015

Project co-financed by the European Union from the European Social Fund.

Visiting academic: Paweł Synowiec, PhD

Date: 04.05.2015 – 06.06.2015

Location: Tokyo University of Technology, School of Media Science

Supervisor: Professor Kunio Kondo.

Computer Graphics, Computer Animation & Game, Interactive Modelling

Summary of the visit:

The visit’s schedule included participation in lectures, individual presentations by the lecturers of the School of Media Science and classes for students. In addition to observing the didactic process, I had many conversations about the activities conducted by the SoMS and participated in many socializing events for the university community and events outside the university. This helped me to learn more about the cultural and national heritage of Japan.

Most of the lectures during the study visit were held in Hachioji Campus, where the School of Media Science is located. One of the visits took place at Kamata Campus where the School of Design is located.

Skills/qualifications acquired during the visit:

During the study visit I had an opportunity to take a close look at the way the didactic process was organized and conducted. The first year students design games without the use of computers, which was somewhat surprising taking into account the technological advancement of the university. The classes were held by Prof. Yoshiro Kishimoto whose professional career was linked with Namco. Students presented the progress of their work in groups during each game design class. Students who did not work on the project discussed could also participate in the discussion together with lecturers. Every lecturer conducts their own scientific research the results of which are included in the curriculum, e.g. those dealing with particle systems and speech recognition systems. The education system is largely based on so-called special classes, which can be chosen by students at any point of their studies. The classes on 3D modelling and animation are an example.

Applying the acquired results, skills and qualifications:

The School of Media Science has introduced a pioneering curriculum focused on creating video games which is closely related to the video game industry. During the studies, students have to choose the so-called project exercises (elective), which they are free to change over the course of 7 semesters. These two elements of the curriculum are very similar to how this process is organized at the Game and Virtual Space Design in Cieszyn. SoMS puts a great emphasis on developing students’ skills in presenting their work (individually or in groups). In my opinion, the Game and Virtual Space Design course should also focus more on this element of the didactic process.

SoMS would undoubtedly be a valuable partner for future joint activities in research projects related to broadly defined interactive entertainment. The SoMS authorities have expressed a desire to establish a permanent and close co-operation in the future.