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How to Get a BA/BS in Indie Game Development (Interdisciplinary Studies)
Started by J. A. Whye Jun 22 2014 02:38 AM

5 replies to this topic
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#1

J. A. Whye

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J. A. Whye
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I want to major in Independent Game Development, a major which doesn't exist in the State of Alaska university system. However, you can major in Interdisciplinary Studies at UAA which is kind of a "build your own" major.

 

From what I've heard it's not easy to get one of those approved, and I'm thinking I may run into roadblocks because when I've mentioned game development to people they've come back with, "You should major in Computer Science." (Random people, not profs at this point.)

 

But Indie Game Development is much less math intensive than most CS degrees I've seen -- unless you're writing your own game engine. But writing an engine isn't game development. With frameworks like Corona SDK and engines like Unity, solid programming skills are all you need for the technical aspect, not the nitty-gritty that CS geeks get into. 

 

Plus, for an indie, there's also design, writing, marketing, and business, so a CS degree doesn't cut it.

 

My idea is to have a pie cut into thirds:

 

  • Programming = 1/3
  • Design & Writing = 1/3
  • Marketing & Business = 1/3

 

That, I think, would give someone a good foundation upon which they could build an Indie Game Development business.

 

I know I have to get a department head to agree that none of the current majors are close enough to what I want to do, so I'll be trying to figure out which of those three pie segments might give me the best shot.

 

I don't start trying to get it approved until this winter, but I'd like to get all my ducks in a row before then. So if anybody has ideas on how to handle this, I'd appreciate it.

 

 Jay

 

 



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#2

Rob Miracle

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Here in NC, several community colleges offer AS degrees in game design and simulation.  I think NC State also has a BS degree as well.  My 27yo is going through the community college program now and is planning on transferring to get a 4 year degree aftewards.  In his research, he found other schools, I think in Texas and Colorado that offer game focused computer majors. 

 

At the local CC they offer two tracks: one programming oriented and one art and design oriented.  He's going through the design track and it includes texture design, game art, 3d modeling, game design theory, etc.  You can look at their offerings here:

 

http://www.waketech.edu/programs-courses/credit/simulation-and-game-development

 

Perhaps you can use this information to form your independent study course. 

 

Rob



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#3

J. A. Whye

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J. A. Whye
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Thanks, Rob, the more things like that I can find, the better.

 

Most of the courses I've seen are aimed at people who are planning on becoming an employee rather than starting their own business. I may have more luck approaching a Business/Entrepreneur prof with this idea than a Computer Science prof.

 

I'll keep putting together my argument... :)

 

 Jay



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#4

Rob Miracle

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I would think that you could add in a few core business classes, like:  Marketing 300, Accounting 300, Micro Economics 300, Finance 300 and business writing would cover the basics for running a business.   One of the classes in the SGD programming covered the game industry and business as well.

 

Rob



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#5

crssmn

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I would look at the courses available in USC's master in game design program. They know what they're doing and their program is incredible. 



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#6

J. A. Whye

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I would look at the courses available in USC's master in game design program. They know what they're doing and their program is incredible. 

 

Yeah, if there's one worth emulating, the Romero program would be at the top of the list. :)




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