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Game on as computing degree students develop apps

Computing degree students at the Channelside campus have developed innovative treasure hunt apps as part of a challenge run by the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).

They formed two teams – Popup Pirates and the Cursed Coders – for the four-week module which saw them design, develop and market the apps.

The students, who are all on the Bsc Honours computing degree, were tasked with building the app that enabled users to navigate around an area and answer questions allowing them to unlock the next location.

Furness College computing lecturer Rachael Tomlinson said the teams assigned themselves roles and worked independently to produce the different elements of the project.

“It’s a fantastic module that allows the students to gain a wealth of hands-on experience and see their work being used in real-time,” she said.

“In just four weeks they have successfully completed this task, I’ve seen their confidence grow hugely and they have gained valuable team-building skills.

“It’s also been great that other students have an insight into what we do in computing. There’s such a buzz and it shows the possibility of things you can achieve right here in the classroom.”

The teams also created a brand for their app and developed a marketing strategy to promote their product, including a promotional video as well as developing their skills in graphic design and social media marketing to create adverts. The students then showcased their apps to a group of second year University of Cumbria computing students, who will go on to build apps for real-world use at the nearby Dock Museum.

BAE Systems apprentice Anna Caitlin, was part of the Cursed Coders team and managed the marketing aspects of the project. She said: “The project was very challenging so it was good to meet each other to gain an understanding of where our skills lie. This was something I think we did well as it allowed us to delegate tasks and pick the best roles based on experience and skills.”

Ashley Teijlingen-Bell, of the Popup Pirates, said “it was not only a great hands-on experience but good to get to know people at the start of the course. As it’s a fairly independent task, we had to do our own research on UX and UI design which helped with how we designed the app and implemented features such as a QR scanner,” he said.

The final challenge will take place on the 27th November at Open Evening at Channelside where the two groups will showcase their apps to potential future students who can also find out about the courses on offer.

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