Teach Your Children Well: RPI Offers Games Degree

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute launched an undergraduate degree program in Games and Simulation Arts & Sciences (GSAS), which it said would play on the success of an existing games studies minor offered in the university's School of Humanities an Social Sciences.

The aim of the degree seems confined to preparing graduates for jobs in industry: GSAS will "equip graduates with a suite of integrated skills necessary for leaders in the game development industry," according to RPI.

John Harrington, dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at Rensselaer, said graduates of the program "will enter the field with a broad knowledge about games and simulation, as well as a specialized concentration or second degree in any one of a range of disciplines impacting the future of game development and design."

Rensselaer has a dedicated virtual reality and motion capture studio, as well as a 10-station networked PC room used to "study social gaming," RPI said. The lab is suitably decked out with sofas, video games and consoles, a plasma television, and four miniature cameras. Among the required courses for the degree are:  Experimental Game Design, Interactive Narrative, and History & Culture of Games.

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Paul McCloskey is contributing editor of Syllabus.

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