The Media, Entertainment and Technology Experience is an interdisciplinary collaboration spanning two colleges and three academic programs: Computer Animation and Game Development, Journalism and Public Relations, and Media Arts, Design, and Technology.
The goal of METX is to allow students to work in interdisciplinary teams, just as they will in their professional careers while getting hands-on experience with industry hardware, software and processes. METX offers two classes:
- METX 358 Emerging Technologies for Media & Entertainment
- This introductory course explores a variety of emerging technologies and analyzes how majors brands use these tools to create immersive content. Students create their own immersive story by working in interdisciplinary teams, filming in 360-degree video and publishing content for viewing in a virtual reality headset.
- METX 458 Applied Emerging Technologies for Media & Entertainment
- In this advanced course, students work directly with a client to solve communication challenges through the use of emerging technologies. METX students collaborate to create immersive stories in virtual reality, augmented reality, 360-degree video and other creative formats.
To learn more about the program and see behind-the-scenes footage, view the video below.
We'd like to acknowledge additional Chico State staff members for their involvement in the METX project.
- Susan Wiesinger Susan Wiesinger is a professor in the Department of Journalism and Public Relations at Chico State. She helped organize the METX collaboration and co-taught the first emerging technology class. Her primary areas of teaching and research are digital/information literacy and media ownership. She holds a Ph.D. from Purdue University and is the author of “Digital Literacy: A Primer on Media, Identity, and the Evolution of Technology,” and co-author of “Media Smackdown: Deconstructing the News and the Future of Journalism.”
- Clarke Steinbeck Clarke Steinbeck is the chair of the Computer Animation and Game Development program. He studied at UC Santa Cruz and earned his doctorate in Computer Science. He was influential in the creation of the METX collaboration.
- VR/AR Tools:
- Maya and Substance for 3D models
- Photoshop for 2D content
- C# and Visual Studio for code
- Unity game engine to tie everything together In this advanced course, students work directly with a client to solve communication challenges through the use of emerging technologies. METX students collaborate to create immersive stories in virtual reality, augmented reality, 360-degree video and other creative formats.
- 360 Video Tools:
- Insta360 ONE X
- Insta360 ONEX app for footage viewing
- Insta360 Studio 2019 for editing
- Recording stick, helmet stand and a protective case
- 2D Video Tools:
- $50,000 worth of audio and camera equipment
- Multi-track recorder
- Black Magic Ursa Camera
- Editing platforms: Adobe Premiere, Davinci Resolve, ProTools and Foley
- Web Development Tools:
- $50,000 worth of audio and camera equipment
- Adobe Creative Cloud: InDesign, Photoshop, Dreamweaver, PremierPro, Spark
- HTML, CSS, FTP
This introductory course explores a variety of emerging technologies and analyzes how major brands use these tools to create immersive content. Students create their own immersive story by working in interdisciplinary teams, filming in 360-degree video and publishing content for viewing in a virtual reality headset.
The Red Bluff Round-Up project applies innovative storytelling techniques to showcase the historical progression of the Round-Up as it prepares to celebrate its 100-year anniversary. In spring 2020, METX students designed 2D videos and wrote social media content to promote the Round-Up’s upcoming anniversary. Students incorporated AR and mixed reality apps to bring fun and immersive story experiences to the traditional rodeo.
In spring 2018, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. was METX's first client. METX created 2D and 360-degree video tours of the brewery’s Bottleshop to be viewed during their tours, on social media and during public events. The team also created a VR tour of the original brewery circa 1980, where Ken Grossman developed Sierra Nevada’s iconic Pale Ale.
The spring 2019 METX team created a VR experience, two promotional videos and a 360-degree video for Lundberg Family Farms, a leading manufacturer of organic rice products. These immersive stories focused on Lundberg’s sustainability practices within its manufacturing process.
In mid-March 2018, Chico State students enrolled in a CAGD special topics class in 3D scanning got hands-on experience scanning a range of local landmarks using a rented FARO® Laser Scanner Focus3D X 330 HDR LiDAR scanner. One of the local landmarks the students scanned was the Honey Run Covered Bridge, a historical landmark that was more than 100 years old. The bridge was destroyed during the 2018 Camp Fire. Now, the digital rendering of the bridge is available for the community’s efforts toward rebuilding.
The spring 2021 METX team created an immersive VR experience and a 2D video for Bidwell Mansion State Park in Chico, California. Frontiersman and politician John Bidwell built his mansion in 1865 in Chico; it became a historic state park in 1972. The CAGD, MADT and J&PR students worked collaboratively to research, film, photograph, lidar scan and more to create a VR experience and 2D video. These products focus on a diverse perspective of history and make the mansion more accessible to prospective visitors.
METX collaborated with the Big Chico Creek Ecological Reserve during the spring 2022 semester. This project focused on the creation of a documentary showcasing the range of BCCER community projects with an emphasis on forest therapy. The team created an Android augmented reality product to support BCCER's cultural tour program. This tour takes place on the Chico State campus and highlights aspects of the Mechoopda tribe's history. Finally, the METX team created a range of social media content, photography and videos to showcase this collaboration.
In spring 2023, METX partnered with University Communications and the Alumni Association. The team developed a video series highlighting successful alumni and students. They also developed Rockin’ with Ru, an Android smartphone application that allows users to take photos with Chico State’s mascot, Ru, anywhere in the world via augmented reality. The team also participated in Chico State’s Giving Day to raise funds to continue the METX program, developed social media content, and a behind-the-scenes website.
Three Departments, Two Colleges, One Team
METX is an interdisciplinary program at Chico State that includes majors from:
CAGD students are planning careers in video game development and computer animation. They develop the VR and AR projects for METX clients. CAGD is part of the College of Engineering, Computer Science & Construction Management.
J&PR students are writers, editors and brand managers for METX projects. These students are seeking careers in digital media, PR, marketing and related fields. J&PR is part of the College of Communication & Education.
MADT students are preparing for careers in film, graphic design and broadcasting. Working behind the camera, they drive the creation of both 2D and 360-degree video content for METX clients. MADT is part of the College of Communication & Education.
TMETX students use a wide variety of technological innovations to create content and complete projects.
METX students specialize in creating immersive stories through virtual and augmented reality. Students use a combination of 3D and 2D modeling, coding and powerful computers to transport audiences into a complete digital realm (VR) or to mix the digital realm with the real one (AR).
360 video brings a unique and innovative perspective to clients’ stories. With a complete 360 landscape, viewers are able to immerse themselves into an environment that normally wouldn’t be available. The process of capturing a fluid and engaging 360 video requires students to focus on video height, avoiding stitching errors caused by too fast of camera movement and the method of viewing by the end user.
METX students work with state-of-the-art audio, video and editing equipment to create innovative content for clients. The students' 2D storytelling technique is broken down into a three-step process: pre-production, production and post-production. In these three stages, students are responsible for crafting shot-lists, scripts, managing visual and audio equipment and delivering a masterful story that meets each client's needs.
METX students build and design websites to showcase client work. Students utilize Adobe Creative Cloud, Canva, HTML and CSS to create professional website content. On various client accounts, the METX team is also responsible for crafting motion graphics, social media and pop-up content for VR and AR projects.