Game Design and Development: Online Degree Programs and Courses

Learn how you can start training for a career in game design and development. Find out about online course topics and degree programs in the field, and check the prerequisites for enrollment. Schools offering Game Production degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

Game design and development training is offered in degree and certificate programs. These programs have specific software requirements and help students develop well-rounded skills in this field. Courses can take from several weeks to over two years to complete, allowing students to decide how much education they want.

Online Available Online
Programs Certificates, Bachelor's Degrees and Continuing Education Options
Courses Algorithm Analysis and Design, Game Software Testing, Artificial Intelligence and Engine Scripting, C++ Programming, Trigonometry, Matrix Mathematics, Physics, Algebra, Geometry, Scripting and Animation

What Game Design and Development Credentials Can I Earn Online?

Several bachelor's degree programs are available in an online format. There are certificate programs available as well. Continuing education programs offer courses in video game design and development that can earn you up to 50 continuing education units (CEUs). Below are some online programs:

• Full Sail University (Winter Park, Florida) offers a B.S. in Game Design.

• Southern New Hampshire University (Manchester, New Hampshire) has an online B.S. program in game programming and development.

• Rocky Mountain College of Art + Design (Denver, Colorado) has a B.F.A. in Game Art for people interested in both the artistic and programming aspects of game development.

• Academy of Art University (San Francisco, California) has an innovative school of game development with solid online courses.

• University of Advancing Technology (Tempe, Arizona) has an online B.S. in Game Programming and is ranked as a top game design school by the Princeton Review.

What Will I Learn?

In addition to software engineering and game development, you also gain critical-thinking, problem-solving, logic and communication skills. A sampling of courses typically taught in these programs are listed below:

• C++ programming

• AI (artificial intelligence)

• Networking

• Engine scripting

• Game architecture

You may learn how to create flight simulations and military training scenarios. The training will prepare you for entry-level positions as a game designer, systems designer or animator.

The curriculum of most online game design and development programs focuses on five key areas of study. These include programming languages, 3D design, real-time game engine architectures, artificial intelligence algorithms and mathematics. Your course topics may include C++ programming, trigonometry, matrix mathematics, physics, algebra, geometry, scripting and animation.

What Requirements Do I Need to Meet in Order to Enroll?

Most programs specify the hardware and software requirements necessary to run gaming programs. A Mac with OS X 10.7 or higher, at least 2 GB of RAM and a fast processor, or a PC with Windows 7 or higher, at least a 32-bit processor and 2 GB of RAM, is usually the minimum requirements.

Programs will often require certain software, like Adobe Suite or VLC Media Player. Some classes will need additional hardware or software, like scanners or Microsoft Office. Be sure and read the requirements carefully.

Some programs have created their own software to help online students create, share and save their work, such as Full Sail's Project LaunchBox. Others use sharing software to communicate with faculty and students.

How Long Will It Take to Complete My Studies?

Online programs allow you to work at your own pace, provided that you complete everything within the specified time frame. Bachelor's degree programs usually take about 32 months to complete. Individual courses will take about six weeks. For career training programs, you'll have about 3-6 months to complete your studies. Extensions are available if you are having trouble completing the coursework in a timely manner.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Ashford University

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    Popular programs at Ashford University:

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  • Kaplan University

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  • Full Sail University

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  • Brenau University

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  • Grand Canyon University

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  • Colorado State University Global

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