Remote open days via AR app at Arts University Bournemouth

The app, developed by Bond & Coyne design, can be used by prospective students alongside the printed prospectus to experience the campus more fully

Arts University Bournemouth (AUB) has launched AUB AR, an augmented reality (AR) app, which allows users to experience its stunning state-of-the-art campus firsthand. Using the latest technology, it will form an essential part of the university’s recruitment process, giving prospective students an immersive insight into campus life and showcasing current student creative work, confirming AUB’s status as a leading university in the creative industries.

The app, developed by brand design agency Bond & Coyne, is activated by a marker within AUB’s ‘House of Cards’ prospectus. Users can focus their smartphone camera on the front cover and the AUB AR app will spring to life. Animation and 360-degree imagery allows users to experience the campus remotely and makes it easy to click through to the university’s website for more detailed information about studying at AUB. It also features surprise features such as following animated characters through the campus, to prolong engagement and encourage sharing.

AUB AR will be used at higher education events to inspire inquisitive prospective applicants and to prompt conversations about the campus and facilities. It will also be shared with students in advance of open days, and provides an insight into campus life for those students unable to visit the university before embarking on their studies. 

Smartphone leaders are investing heavily in AR and we saw the opportunity to use the growing capabilities of AR to intrigue prospective students. – Karen Thurlow, AUB spokesperson

Karen Thurlow, AUB spokesperson, explained: “Recruitment strategies are having to change to connect with and attract the attention of Generation Z. The way young people research universities is evolving, as is their relationship with mobile technology. Smartphone leaders are investing heavily in AR and we saw the opportunity to use the growing capabilities of AR to intrigue prospective students.”

“We want to attract the most creative people to our university, and so it makes sense that we use effective creative marketing techniques to attract the best students. AUB has some of the highest teaching standards in the country and we pride ourselves on our talent pool – our graduate employment rate is 98% which is the joint highest employment rate of any English university and concrete proof of how an AUB degree equips students to turn creative talent into a career. It comes as no surprise that an AUB alumni has created this cutting-edge app for us.”

Jason Hancock from Bond & Coyne is the former AUB student who created the app: “Augmented reality provides an element of novelty, but we believe it also enables the university to showcase the very best of life at AUB,” he said. “We hope it will become a strategic brand asset for AUB that can grow over time, providing additional information and event-based content as well as the chance to offer new opportunities and surprises to prospective students.”

AUB is also launching two videos – one about the making of the app, including an interview with the designer Jason Hancock – and one about how to use the app, that will appear on screens across the campus and on social media. The launch of the app will take place in a giant cube on the AUB campus, which students can enter in order to experience the app for themselves. News of the app will also be emailed to current applicants, those who have registered an interest in AUB, and schools.

The AUB AR app is available on iTunes and on Google Play.