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Degree Overview: Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) Degree in Game Design

Majors Overview February 15, 2015

Game design refers to the combination of technical and artistic skills for the creation of digital and electronic entertainment. Intermediate- and entry-level jobs in the industry of game design can be obtained with the completion of a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree program in Game Design.

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) Degree Programs in Game Design

The majority of BA in Game Design programs involve the offering of information and building of skills in story-telling, general art, technology and programming, and game design theory. Through internships and team-based projects, skills in critical analysis, collaboration, and leadership are gained by students enrolled in the program. Coursework integrates aspects of visual design, artificial intelligence, technology, animation, and art, whereby students are encouraged to grow as artists and designers.

Educational Requirements

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a GED certificate or a high school diploma. Submission of several copies of artwork or a portfolio of work may also be required to be submitted by applicants to some programs.


Coursework in many undergraduate game design programs is devised to build students’ skills in play testing, programming, asset creation, designing, and interactive storytelling. Students gain foundational knowledge in prototyping, staging, genres, composition, and tone and color. Coursework may commonly include the following topic areas:

•Level design
•Interface design
•Testing and analysis
•3-D design
•Character design
•Environments and backgrounds
•2-D design
•Game mechanics
•Game history

Career Choices

Those that graduate from a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Game Design program can seek occupations in the field of game design. Armed with skills in mechanics, design documentation, observational drawing, game play, and user experience, they can seek numerous positions, such as:

•Quality assurance testers
•Creative directors
•Design directors
•Level designers
•3-D modelers

Job and Wage Outlook

A job growth rate of six percent has been predicted for multimedia artists and animators, including game designers, over the 2012 – 2022 decade (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). In May 2012, these professionals banked an average annual wage of $61,370 (BLS).

Continuing Education Choices

Bachelor’s degree program graduates can pursue continuing education by earning master’s degrees in game design and development or pursue graduate certificate programs, whereby the students would be able to design games while working in teams. Narrative, graphics, and algorithms are often covered in coursework. Students receive professional training to perform leadership roles in the industry.

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