CGI helps Special Education Needs students safely navigate new experiences

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CGI (NYSE: GIB) (TSX: GIB.A) created a virtual reality (VR) environment in a pro bono project for Bettridge School, a school for children with special educational needs (SEN). The school wanted to confidently present students with social situations and everyday events that are an integral part of their education. In collaboration with the school’s teachers, CGI developed a web and virtual reality application that allows students to experience everyday social interactions such as a visit to the supermarket. The application also allows the school to directly create new scenarios in the future.

A team from CGI’s Emerging Technology Lab in Gloucester delivered the application using images captured by 360-degree cameras. Tesco enabled a digital capture of a local store that students can now safely explore in a realistic and meaningful way. The VR application can support students of different abilities to explore scenarios that can be either teacher-led or student-driven, depending on specific needs and goals.

Jo Bleasdale, Principal at Bettridge School said;

β€œI am blown away by the technology and how it will boost students’ confidence as they move from the virtual world to the real world. The impact of this project went far beyond what I had imagined. Working with the CGI team has really achieved what we set out to do and it’s great to have worked with a local organization.”

Patrick Hutchings, senior vice president of consulting services for secure innovation and advisory at CGI, said:

β€œIt was wonderful to see how students really benefit and enjoy our VR application and the difference it makes to their education. Part of the culture of CGI is building relationships with the communities in which we live and work. This pro bono project was suggested by one of our employees who identified an application of our technology that could make a real difference to the students at the school. We hope to build on this very successful example with other schools and groups.”

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CGI prides itself on being a responsible company and is committed to a more inclusive and sustainable world. As part of CGI’s commitment to being a responsible company, it aims to build relationships with the communities where CGI members live and work. It does this through employee activities such as volunteering, fundraising and pro bono initiatives that use their technical knowledge to enable local communities to benefit and make a positive impact.

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