List of Bachelors in Game Design Programs – Campus & Online

Game design is more than just programming, it’s where creativity and technology meet. The skills taught in a bachelor’s program can be used beyond video games, and for positions in film, television, software engineering, web design, and more. With it’s broad application and the ever-growing video game industry, a bachelor’s in game design can set you up for an exciting and innovative career.

Mike Sellers

Bachelors in Game Design Podcast Featuring Mike Sellers

If you’re interested in a career in Game Design and Development, check out this episode of the YesCollege Podcast. Scott explores the exciting world of Game Design with Mike Sellers, Director of the Game Design program at Indiana University – The Media School. Click here to view this episode’s show notes.

 

Where Can I Earn My Bachelors in Game Design Degree?

While you’re listening to the podcast, check out our list of schools with game design programs in the US. For each school, we provide a few highlights, including program offerings, course breakdown, and accreditation.

Click on the links below to jump to a specific state’s programs. You can also skip ahead to our Quick Facts about a bachelor’s degree in game design, or information about degree types and accreditation.

Online

Coleman University
Accredited by WASC

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Coleman University’s undergraduate Game Development program is designed to teach students character development, story-telling, 3D image rendering, and more, and can be prepared for positions like game programmers, game testers, and interface designers. Students in this program can take classes like Digital Images, Hard Surface Modeling, and Shader Materials.
Full Sail University
Accredited by ACCSC

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At Full Sail University, students will learn how to create 3D content in the BS in Game Art degree program. This bachelor’s program can be completed in 20 months on campus and in 29 months online. Students in this program can take classes like Game Characters, Environment Art, Motion Capture, and Technology in the Entertainment and Media Industries.
Liberty University
Accredited by SACS

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The BS in Information Technology, Web and Mobile Programming specialization degree program is designed to prepare students for careers as front-end web developers, mobile web designers, user interface analysts, and web developers. Students in this program can take classes in areas like graphic design, digital imaging, C# programming, and Web enterprise technologies.

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Arizona

The University of Advancing Technology offers a BA in Game Design. Students in this program are exposed to all the tools of the trade, as well as programming and asset creation video game design skill sets. Students also focus on the design principles, skills and techniques needed to create the industry’s most innovative game projects.

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Arkansas

The BFA in Game, Animation, and Simulation at Southern Arkansas University focuses on teaching 3D amination techniques as well as production and management of game environments. This program consists of a minimum of 120 hours, and students pursuing this degree can take classes like Physics of Animation, 3D Character Rigging, Game Design Management, 3D Design, and 2D Design.

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California

Coleman University
Accredited by WASC
Coleman University’s undergraduate Game Development program is designed to teach students character development, story-telling, 3D image rendering, and more, and can be prepared for positions like game programmers, game testers, and interface designers. Students in this program can take classes like Digital Images, Hard Surface Modeling, and Shader Materials.
At the University of Southern California, the BS in Computer Science (Games) program is to provide students with a solid grounding in computer science and a cross-disciplinary background in game development. Topics covered include game production, visual design for games and interactives, computer animation, video game programming, game hardware architectures, introductory and intermediate game design, and two semester-long final game projects.

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Connecticut

University of Connecticut
Accredited by NEASC
The University of Connecticut offers a few different options for students interesting in learning about game design. UConn offers undergraduate degrees in Digital Media and Design in two forms: A Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree, or a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degree. Both of these degree give students the opportunity to select an area of concentration in Digital Game Design and Development with courses that cover such topics as game system design, virtual world and simulations, game scripting, and more.

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Delaware

Wilmington University
Accredited by MSCHE
The Game Design and Development program at Wilmington University is for students who want to learn how to design and develop two-dimensional and three-dimensional games and simulations for training, educational, and animation applications deployed to personal computers, game consoles, and training modules. The program focuses on design elements supported by game programming using available game engine platforms.

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Florida

Full Sail University
Accredited by ACCSC
At Full Sail University, students will learn how to create 3D content in the BS in Game Art degree program. This bachelor’s program can be completed in 20 months on campus and in 29 months online. Students in this program can take classes like Game Characters, Environment Art, Motion Capture, and Technology in the Entertainment and Media Industries.

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Georgia

At SCAD, students can earn a BA or a BFA in game design. These interactive game development programs have won the top prize in the E3 College Game Competition for the last two years. Students can earn either the BA or the BFA in game design in Atlanta, Hong Kong, Savannah and online via eLearning.

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Illinois

DePaul University
Accredited by HLC
The BS in Game Design at DePaul University prepares students to become leaders in the diversifying field of games by providing opportunities for students to collaborate on interdisciplinary teams with programmers, artists, writers, and audio designers. The program focuses on the entire development cycle from ideation to documentation, prototyping, implementation, iteration, and testing.

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Indiana

The Bachelor of Science in Game Design degree program at Indiana University focuses primarily on systems design, providing students with a broad skillset to prepare them for careers in the game industry. Students in this program can take classes like Game Production, Information Infrastructure, Game Technology, and Game Art and Sound, along with game workshops about prototypes, demos, and publishing.

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Iowa

Grand View University
Accredited by HLC
Grand View University offers a degree in Game Design and Interactive Analysis that prepares students to become leaders in the field of games. The program provides opportunities for students to collaborate on interdisciplinary teams with programmers, artists, writers, and audio designers. Students can earn their degree online, onsite, or on the weekends and in the evenings.

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Kansas

Southwestern College
Accredited by WASC
Southwestern University offers a BS in Computer Science and Digital Arts with an emphasis in computer game development. Students enrolled in this program take courses in image and sound design, software design, and computer game concepts, in addition to the necessary coursework that satisfies the computer science major.

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Louisiana

Louisiana Tech University
Accredited by SACS
Louisiana Tech offers a degree in computer science with the option to select on area of concentration in graphics and game design. The computer science degree is designed to provide students with a general education in mathematics, science, and the humanities, and for those in game design, additional courses in game design and animation.
The University of Louisiana at Lafayette offers a bachelor’s degree in computer science with a concentration in video game design and development. It is recommended that students choose an area of concentration within the first two years of the computer science program. The game design concentration has a collection of required courses and required electives.

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Maryland

University of Baltimore
Accredited by MSCHE
The University of Baltimore offers a BS in Simulation and Game Design – a degree program that focuses on applied game design theory, the fundamentals of computer programming, 3-D modeling and animation, usability design, and design of multiplayer games. Students in this program can choose from one of two contents areas: technical art and level design.

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Massachusetts

Becker College
Accredited by NEASC
The game design concentration at Becker College integrates liberal arts course work with a strong foundation of game design skills and programming. Students interested in studying game design earn a BA in Interactive Media Design and take additional courses in 2D and 3D modeling, rigging and animation, motion capture, game audio, storytelling, character development, operations, and game technology.

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Michigan

Eastern Michigan University
Accredited by HLC
The SAG program at Eastern Michigan University, within the College of Technology, offers a BS focusing on Simulation, Animation, and Gaming. The degree is a multidisciplinary area of study, combining traditional art mediums, creative writing, and story development with coursework focusing on modeling, rigging, animation, lighting, and camera work in 3D.
Michigan State University
Accredited by HLC
The Michigan State, students can earn a BA in Media and Information with a game and interactive media design concentration that focuses on courses in animation, three-dimensional graphics, advanced web development, and more. This concentration focuses heavily on the games and interactive media and information technology industries.

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Missouri

Webster University
Accredited by HLC
The BA in Games and Game Design degree program at Webster University is designed to prepare students for careers in the games and serious games development industries. This degree consists of 128 credit hours, including at least 45 major-related credits. Students in this program can take classes like World Design, Level Design, Video Game Art, and Animation and Rigging.

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New Hampshire

SNHU has a BS in Game Programming and Development degree program that is designed to prepare students for a career in game programming, video game developing, AI programming, game engineering, and more. Students can take classes in a variety of computer programming languages and scripting, as well as game engine development and deployment, 3D modeling, digital sculpting and imaging.

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New Jersey

Bloomfield College
Accredited by MSCHE
The BA in Game Design degree program at Bloomfield College aims to prepare students for professional careers as game developers. Students are given the opportunity to work with an advisor and focus on programming, game design, or 2D and 3D art.

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New York

New York University
Accredited by MSCHE
NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts has a BFA in Game Design degree program that focuses on various aspects of game design, game development, and game scholarship. Students in this program can take classes in subjects like graphics, AI, 2D and 3D animation, art direction, music, audio programming, marketing, revenue models, and more.
The BS in Game Design and Development at SUNY Canton aims to prepare students for careers as game programmers, modelers, animators, level designers, virtual/augmented reality software engineers, and more. Students in this program can take classes like 3D Modeling and Texturing, Animation Techniques, Virtual Worlds, and Digital Media and Interaction.

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North Carolina

UNC Charlotte’s BS in Computer Science degree program gives students the opportunity to pursue a concentration in AI, Robotics, and Gaming. This degree consists of a minimum of 120 credit hours, with 21 credit hours for the gaming concentration. Students in this program can take classes like Digital Image Processing, 3D Computer Graphics, and Artificial Intelligence for Computer Games.
William Peace University
Accredited by SACS
The BA in Simulation and Game Design degree program at WPU aims to provide a broad background of this industry, ranging from the entertainment-related fields to the serious gaming side. Students in this program can take classes like Digital Media Convergence, Programming C++, 3D Modeling and Animation, Motion for the Screen, and Writing About Storytelling in Simulation.

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Ohio

Kent State University
Accredited by HLC
Kent State University’s BS in Engineering Technology degree program gives students the option to pursue a concentration in Computer Design, Animation, and Game Design that is designed to prepare students for careers in game design, modeling and technical illustration, artistic production, exhibition, and broadcast. Students in this program can take classes in digital imaging, motion capture, and multimedia computer animation.
Ohio University
Accredited by HLC
The Games and Animation undergraduate degree program at Ohio University focuses on the production of computer and digital games while developing students’ management and leadership skills for those industries. Students in this program can take classes like Non-traditional Storytelling, Audience Research, Narrative Animation, Media and Web Delivery, and 3D Modeling and Animation.

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Oklahoma

The BFA in Gaming and Animation degree program at Oklahoma Christian University focuses on communication design, self-expression, and experimentation. This program consists of a minimum of 126 hours, 72 of which are major core and elective courses. Students in this program can take classes like Media Production, Motion Imagery, Team Game Production, 3D Modeling, and Animation Principles and Practices.
Rogers State University
Accredited by HLC
Rogers State University has a BS in Game Development degree program that aims to develop skills in art, computer science, mathematics, physics, and writing. This degree can prepare students for careers in animation, multimedia artistry, software engineering, and computer programming. Students in this program can take classes like 3D Modeling, Mobile Applications Development, and Human-Computer Interface Development.

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Pennsylvania

The Art Institutes is a system of 37 schools spread throughout the country. The BS in Game Art and Design degree program is offered online, at their headquarters in Pittsburgh, PA, and at many of their other campuses in states like Texas, Florida, and Illinois. Students in this program will cover subjects like digital storytelling, texture mapping, and 3D animation.

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Rhode Island

The Video Game Design bachelor’s degree program at the New England Institute of Technology is designed to prepare students for careers in game design, animation, visualization, and a variety of digital media production positions. Students in this program can take classes like Simulation and Serious Games, Game Engines, 3D Digital Sculpting, and Virtual Production/Motion Capture.

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South Dakota

Dakota State University
Accredited by HLC
The BS in Computer Game Design focuses on developing writing and design skills, along with enhancing students’ understanding of software development, calculus, physics, and more. In this program, students can take classes like World Building, Level Design, Game Programming Tools, and 2D Design on Computers.

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Tennessee

The BS in Digital Media at East Tennessee State University gives students the opportunity to pursue a concentration in Digital Game Design. This concentration consists of about 40 credits of required and elective game design-related courses. Some of the classes that students can take include High Fidelity Modeling for Entertainment, Interaction for Game Design, and Game Play and Testing.

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Texas

Baylor University
Accredited by SACS
At Baylor University, students can earn a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science with a specialization in Game Development that aims to enhance students’ understanding of the development and application of interactive digital media and technologies. Students in this program can take classes like Computer Graphics, Interactive Media, and Gaming Platform Frameworks.
The Bachelor of Arts in Arts, Technology, and Emerging Communication with Gaming at UT Dallas focuses on the creation and potential applications and cultural implications of interactive media. Students in this program can take classes like Character Design, Games and Narratives, World Building, and Computer Graphics for Artists and Designers.

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Utah

Utah Valley University
Accredited by NWCCU
The BS in Animation and Game Development degree program at Utah Valley University focuses on aesthetics, scripting, and modeling, as well as developing professional skills. Students in this program can take classes like Character Development, Game Design, Digital Storyboarding, 3D Modeling, and Rigging and Animation Essentials.

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Vermont

Champlain College
Accredited by NEASC
At Champlain College, students can earn an undergraduate Game Design degree that focuses on system design, level design, and narrative design. The college has a Game Studio where Game Design, Game Art and Animation, Game Programming, and Game Production Management majors collaborate to build and complete games. Students can earn a general Game Design degree, or specialize in Sonic Arts.

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Virginia

George Mason University
Accredited by SACS
The BFA in Computer Game Design degree program at George Mason University aims to provide an academically rigorous technical program along with an understanding of the artistic and creative elements of game design. Students in this program can take classes like Writing and Editing Music and Sound, Computer Game Platform Analysis, and Online and Mobile Gaming.
Liberty University
Accredited by SACS
The BS in Information Technology, Web and Mobile Programming specialization degree program is designed to prepare students for careers as front-end web developers, mobile web designers, user interface analysts, and web developers. Students in this program can take classes in areas like graphic design, digital imaging, C# programming, and Web enterprise technologies.

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Washington

DigiPen’s BS in Computer Science and Game Design degree program combines programming and mathematics skills with formal training in game design to prepare students to work as game, level, system, and technical designers, or as software engineers, gameplay programmers, or tools programmers. Students in this program can take classes like Motion Dynamics, 3D Game Design, C/C++, and Game Mechanics.

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Wisconsin

The BFA in Game Design and Development at the University of Wisconsin-Stout degree program develops students’ drawing, 3D modeling, and animation skills. Students in this program can take classes like Pixel and Vector Art, Game Art and Engines, Graphic Design, Digital Narrative, and 2D Game Design and Development.

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Bachelors in Game Design Quick Facts

Here is a brief snapshot of what to expect and look forward to with a bachelor’s degree in game design.

Quick Facts
Common Pre-Enrollment Requirements: High School Diploma or GED (associate’s degree is optional)
Common Core Subjects Covered: Digital Imaging, Animation Physics, Programming Languages, 3D Modeling
Non-Classwork Required: None (internship is strongly recommended)
Expected Time to Complete Bachelor’s Degree: 4 years
Common Next Steps: Entry-Level Position, Master’s Degree
Most Common Career Fields: Game Design, Animation, Web Design, Software Engineering, Multimedia Artist, Computer Programming
 

Exploring Degree Types and Accreditation

Game design degrees can be offered alone, or in tandem with another, similar subject like Game Design and Development or Simulation and Game Design. In the latter case, the curriculum is split between the two subjects rather than solely focusing on game design. Below are some other popular undergraduate degree options for game design:

  • BS in Game Design – a science-based approach to studying game design, typically focuses on more technical aspects of this field like game development and programming and scripting languages
  • BA in Game Design – a liberal arts-based approach to studying game design, typically focuses on drawing, graphics, storytelling, and animation techniques in a broad context
  • BFA in Game Design – a fine arts-based approach to studying game design, typically focuses on drawing, graphics, storytelling, and animation techniques in an entertainment and media design context
  • BSCS in Game Design – this is a BS in Computer Science degree with a concentration in game design
  • BA/BFA in Interactive Media Design, Game Design – this is an arts-based degree in interactive media design with a concentration in game design

Accreditation is important for all degrees, ensuring you receive a qualified education. The accrediting bodies featured in our list are:

  • CIHE – Commission on Institutions of Higher Education
  • DEAC – Distance Education Accrediting Commission
  • HLC – Higher Learning Commission
  • MSA – Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools
  • MSCHE – Middle States Commission on Higher Education
  • NEASC – New England Association of Schools and Colleges
  • NCA – North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools
  • NWCCU – Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
  • SACS – Southern Association of Colleges and Schools
  • WSCUC – WASC Senior College and University Commission

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