In the United States, 385 colleges and universities have video game design programs or offer degrees in the field, according to industry-lobbying group the Entertainment Software Association.
The ESA released a report that shows more than 55 schools offer related associate’s degrees, 226 have bachelor-degree programs, and 46 offer master’s degrees. Only four schools have Ph.D. programs.
“Video games are the fastest growing, most dynamic form of entertainment in the word today,” ESA chief executive officer Michael D. Gallagher said in a statement. “These students are preparing to join an industry that creates interactive software, innovative hardware, and ecosystems that spawn new business models and online communities, transforming consumer experiences, spurring technological advancements, and impacting important areas including education, health care, and business.”
Students interested in learning more about the game-design education around the country can use the ESA’s website to discover which schools offer what programs.
“Computer and video game design programs represent the most transformational areas of study in higher education today,” said Dr. Scott Martin, founding director of the computer and game design program at George Mason University. “Students study both the sciences and the arts, all in a revolving-role team-based, project-based new pedagogical environment that is revolutionizing curricula to better prepare our students for the workforce of today and tomorrow.”
The ESA occasionally releases these reports because an educated workforce benefits the member companies and publishers that the ESA represents. The lobbying firm can also point to the interest in higher education as a positive effect of the gaming industry.