Immerse into the virtual world, experience the reality of depression, Lianhe Zaobao, 28 May 2018

Lianhe Zaobao featured a special feature on virtual and augmented reality technologies and highlighted how three initiatives are using such technologies to create a positive impact on education and social issues. One of these initiatives is a startup called VERE360 (Virtual Experience Real Empathy) that hopes to raise awareness on social issues, like depression, to the public. The startup was founded by four Yale-NUS College students – Adila Sayyed, Isobel Ngo, Sheryl Tey (all from the Class of 2019) and Anisha Charan (Class of 2018). Users put on a mask and headphones, and view two different short film scenarios via a smartphone. After experiencing the perspectives of two ‘patients’ who face depression and anxiety issues, users will undergo a series of facilitated discussions and readings. Before producing the films and the relevant course materials, the students sought feedback from psychology professors and counselling staff. They also consulted patients and their caregivers to better understand their views and experiences.


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