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Online Game Design Degree – The Top Accredited Programs

Online Game Design Degree

As technology advances, so does the famous gaming industry. The virtual gaming world has evolved into enticing, thrilling, engaging, and fast-paced realities. From playing the same game levels for a couple of hours to making us strategize, think, and analyze, video games have instilled in humans the pursuit of mastery. While growing up, did game concepts fascinate you? Do you want to know how to create these virtual wonders and how to control them with lines of code? Then an online game design degree will be beneficial.

A career in game development is very lucrative and rewarding. For example, the median annual salary for a video game designer was $63,403 as of May 2022, according to PayScale. Also, due to the established nature of the video game design industry, graduates will have a steady career, and they can switch between different job roles. There will hardly be a dull moment in your work, and you will have numerous opportunities to learn.

Accordingly, this article will cover the top online game design degree programs. All the accredited degrees and programs are 100% online to fit the busy schedules of working adults. Let’s get started.

What is an Online Game Design Degree?

A video game design degree prepares you to operate in a game studio workplace. In particular, a bachelor’s in video game design provides robust knowledge in the following:

  • Building virtual environments
  • Bringing characters to life
  • Creating immersive video game experiences

Academic Requirements for an Online Game Design Degree Bachelor’s

Admission into an online game design program requires some steps. First comes completing an online application form, then uploading a high school certificate. Although, some colleges and universities require candidates to present transfer credits from their previous school. The criteria for enrollment vary by institution.

Students can submit an enrollment form for a degree program without visiting the campus. Make sure you’ve included official transcripts before submitting the final application.

Top Online Game Design Degree Programs

The schools below deploy innovative and cutting-edge solutions in their game design programs. The course offerings prepare candidates for entry-level job positions in the game development field. Also, the institutions offering these programs are accredited and provide financial aid opportunities to all students.

1. Lindenwood University

Degree Offered: Bachelor of Arts in Game Design
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

Lindenwood University provides an online BA in game design. The degree prepares students for careers with particularly high chances of opportunity in the mobile game industry. Advanced production and game design classes are included in the curriculum, allowing learners to go from concept to application. Also included are main industry concepts, such as:

  • Immersion
  • Game economics
  • Usability
  • Aesthetics

The program incorporates immersive reality technology. Accordingly, VR headsets and associated hardware applications are involved. Virtual reality specifically provides an immersive learning environment leading to hands-on coursework. The instructors bring their real-world experience and industry skill to the virtual classroom.

View More About This Degree

2. Riverland Community College

Degree Offered: Web Developer / Game Design Certificate
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

RCC offers an online web developer/game design certificate worldwide. To illustrate, the program introduces advanced animation for the web and rich interactive video and graphic content. As such, students will learn how to use Adobe Creative Cloud packages: Dreamweaver, Photoshop, Animate, and other advanced technologies.

The certificate in web/game design explores mobile and interactive web development. In fact, coursework covers animation, mobile application development, and web page design. As a result, graduates will understand how to:

  • Develop a virtual reality environment
  • Create and Design web pages using CSS and HTML
  • Create an advanced digital portfolio displaying students’ work
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3. Full Sail University

Degree offered: Bachelor of Science in Computer Animation
Accreditation: Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC)

Full Sail University offers an online BS in computer animation. The program specifically guides learners through the production pipeline deployed in professional studios. For example, sketching, visual development, and storyboarding to character animation. Also, modeling and composing. Students will learn about modeling tools, their capabilities, and the outcomes of tool interactions.

The course curriculum covers all the fundamentals of character rigging. Accordingly, instructors explain how to add joints and controls to a visual character. Also, the institution will provide students with a Project LaunchBox™.

The Project LaunchBox™curriculum equips students with cutting-edge technology for developing projects. Thus, all coursework, multimedia creations, and files are accessible through this software. In summary, the included components in the LaunchBox™ are:

  • MSI GE Raider Laptop
  • Microsoft Office 365
  • Pixologic ZBrush
  • Adobe Creative Cloud, etc.
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4. Savannah College of Art and Design

Degree offered: Bachelor of Arts in Interactive Design and Game Development
Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)

The Savannah College of Art and Design provides an online BA in Interactive Design and Game Development. In short, it equips students with a robust studio foundation that develops abilities vital to their development as experts. Color theory, design, drawing, and a unified visual vocabulary allow students to communicate and work in creative fields.

Coursework also covers topics such as introduction to game development and game design. At the same time, it focuses on user-centered design, interactive web design, information architecture, etc.

Furthermore, the general education classes are structured to develop six main core competencies for all candidates:

  • Strategic Communication
  • Professionalism and Leadership
  • Engagement and Cross-cultural Knowledge
  • Analysis, synthesis, and research
  • Contextualization and Historical investigation
  • Digital Fluency
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5. Fisher College

Degree: BS in Information Technology / Game Development
Accreditation: New England Commission of Higher Education

The online Bachelor of Science instills an understanding of computer and mobile game development. As a result, graduates have a strong foundation in game production while also learning computer science and IT principles.

After completing the degree program, graduates can: Apply development and design to construct advanced three and two-dimensional video games. Some core courses in the IT/Game Development degree are as such:

  • Systems Analysis and Design
  • Information Security and Privacy
  • Computer Programming
  • Introduction to Animation Development
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6. Liberty University

Degree offered: Bachelor of Science in IT / Gaming Design
Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Liberty University offers an online BS degree in information technology with a concentration in gaming design. The program emphasizes industry knowledge and skills. For example, it utilizes state-of-the-art digital learning classrooms and the deployment of computing facilities. Studies cover the essential components of game creation:

  • Graphics
  • Story development
  • Testing
  • Sound
  • Imagination

The gaming design curriculum is unique in that it combines interactive design, graphic arts, and software development training. Also, the course modules will introduce candidates to modern programming languages like Java, C#, and Python. In this exciting field, students will learn:

  • 3D graphics
  • Interactive game development
  • Digital imaging
  • Software development
  • Web and mobile development
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7. Purdue University Global

Degree offered: Bachelor of Science in Analytics / Game Development
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

Purdue University Global offers a BS in analytics with a concentration in game development. The gaming degree curriculum offers STEM education required in the computer game industry. As such, the program covers game studies topics cut across trigonometry, calculus, physics, psychology, and economics.

Subsequently, graduates are career-ready. They will be able to prototype game systems that will create an impact on society.

The coursework in the analytics/game development academic program includes:

  • Introduction to Data Visualization
  • Game Development Practicum
  • Game development: Psychology and Design
  • Contemporary Problems in Applied Computer Graphics
  • Computer Graphics Professional Practices
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8. University of Cincinnati

Degree offered: BS in Information Technology / Game Development & Simulation
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

The University of Cincinnati provides an online bachelor of science in IT with a concentration in game development and simulation. Students graduate with a robust understanding of the following:

  • Programming
  • Game engines
  • Sociability factors
  • Visualization
  • Storytelling
  • Imagination

They will also learn how to debug, test, distribute, and publish game content.

In the same way, students can create simulated environments inspired by real testing, training, and exploration applications. Ultimately, graduates of this degree can pursue jobs in design, development, implementation, evaluation, or interaction.

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9. Baker College

Degree offered: Bachelor of Science in Game Software Development
Accreditation: Kansas State Department of Education (KSDE) and the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP)

Baker College offers an online BS in game software development to students worldwide. The degree provides the skills to design, test, and develop games. Particularly across different platforms and formats for major computer game consoles. Also, the curriculum, created by industry professionals, teaches the complete game creation process, from conceptualization to design to full release.

Online game design degree coursework includes but isn’t limited to:

  • Database Management and Design
  • Introduction to Programming
  • Advanced Java Programming
  • Unreal Game Programming I and II
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10. University of Michigan

Degree offered: Graduate Certificate in Game Design
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

The University of Michigan offers an online Graduate Certificate in Game Design. The program aims to provide practical experience and theoretical knowledge to program mobile/computer-based games at an advanced level. For this purpose, course subjects stem from a software engineering viewpoint and feature game programming approaches.

Learn how to simulate and create video games and systems. To this end, you’ll use algorithmic principles, mathematics, and CS theory to display an understanding of design choices.

The elective courses in this program improve students’ software engineering foundations. Meanwhile, they’ll study specialized aspects of computer science relevant to game development. For example, required coursework in this certificate program includes:

  • Animation
  • Computer Graphics
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Multimedia Design Tools
  • Software User Interface Design and Analysis
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11. Yavapai College

Degree Offered: 3D Modeling and Animation certificate
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

Yavapai College offers 3D Modeling and Animation Certificate via its online learning platform. The certificate prepares students to develop and design models and animations for animated films and video games. Moreover, the curriculum trains learners for Autodesk Maya Advanced Certification. Students will cover the practical aspects of 3D Modeling and Animation.

Upon completing the modeling and animation certificate program, graduates can carry out the following tasks:

  • Design 3D animations and objects for use in mobile/video games
  • Develop “Rigged Models” with advanced animations for use in video games
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12. Academy of Art University

Degree Offered: Associate of Arts in Game Development
Accreditation: WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC)

Academy of Art University provides an online associate’s degree in game development. The program offers a well-rounded arts education emphasizing topics such as:

  • Modeling
  • Rigging
  • Lighting
  • 3D modeling
  • Game design
  • Animation techniques

Students gain specialized monetization, rapid development through iteration, and advanced production skills. They can bring their ideas to life and develop high-resolution results. They will use advanced tools needed to produce normal maps, light maps, and textures in various simulations. Subsequently, graduates can build game environments with advanced 3D modeling techniques.

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13. Southern New Hampshire University

Degree Offered: Bachelor of Science in Game Programming and Development
Accreditation: New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE)

Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) offers an online Game Art and Development BA. The curriculum helps students tackle game theory, interface design, game genres, and game production pipelines. As such, students will learn the coding, math, and engineering that combine to create today’s 3D and 2D games. At the same time, they’ll study everything from cybernetics to interface design and gameplay dynamics to algebra.

Academic coursework in this game development program includes:

  • Digital Game Development
  • 3D Modeling and Animation
  • Interactive Animation
  • Introduction to Digital Imaging
  • Software Development with C#.NET
  • Software Development with C++.NET

Subsequently, graduates will be able to:

  • Create, document, and execute code in a variety of game engines and programming languages relevant to advanced game development
  • Produce realistic gameplay experiences, including game physics, 2D and 3D graphics, game AI, and interface design
View More About This Degree

Game Design Career Options

Game designer jobs include game programmer, game designer, and game artist. The best-paying jobs have education and skill requirements provided by a bachelor’s degree. At the same time, the daily responsibilities and tasks are determined by the path chosen by the student. Some of the unique career options are:

Computer Game Artist

During the development of a video game, computer game artists are vital. Accordingly, they create games for computers, smartphones, etc. They are at the forefront of dimensional characters. They work on objects, colors, textures, characters, and the game environment. While the field may require digital art skills, sketching as an artist is still an essential tool of the trade.

The average salary for video animators and special effects artists was $78,790 in May 2021. The BLS also reports that special effects art and animation careers are estimated to grow to about 16% through 2030.

Video Game Programmer

A game programmer writes the programming (codebase) that makes a digital game work. At the same time, they must collaborate with team members, such as game artists, sound engineers, etc. They turn a project’s concept into a fully functional, interactive game. They are particularly in charge of elements like a character’s running speed and leap height. And they may be responsible for how enemies appear, disappear, and fight.

An entry-level game programmer with less than one year of experience earns an average of $54,045 per annum. And according to Payscale.com, those with 1 to 4 years of experience make an average of $64,831 annually.

Computer / Video Game Designers

The characters, storyline, and narrative of a video game are the responsibility of video game designers. Game designers work in synchronization with a development team. They know how to present mockups, flowcharts, and comprehensive layouts explaining their plans. Game designers are visionaries guiding the difficulty of game levels, obstacles, choices, and outcomes.

An entry-level game designer with less than one year of experience can expect an average of $58,679 yearly. In comparison, those with 1 to 4 years of experience will earn an average of $64,685 per annum, according to PayScale.

FAQs on Top Online Game Design Degree Programs

What are the differences between game developers and game designers?

Game designers are the driving force behind a video game’s creative vision, focusing on the characters, game’s storyline, and environment. Game developers are responsible for the game’s proper deployment, including technical components such as programming.

What are the benefits of becoming a computer/mobile game designer?

Isn’t it exciting to work as a video game designer? Game design can be fascinating, but at the same time, the career is highly rewarding. Game designers utilize their imaginations by designing and creating for profit. Designers can also work freelance from the comfort of their homes and make a decent monthly income.

What are the related career options with an online Game Design degree?

There are various career options for graduates to pursue an online game design degree. Even so, the most popular roles include graphic designer and web developer.

How long does earning an online Bachelor of Game Design degree take?

Bachelor’s degrees in game design development take three to four years to complete. Also, online colleges can assist students in gaining the skills required for a successful career.

Apply to an Online Game Design Degree Program Today!

For many gamers, creating video games is a dream career. The game industry job prospects, entertaining work settings, and high starting incomes are only a few reasons. Consequently, a career in the game development industry is both dynamic and financially rewarding.

Make your decision today and enroll for an online game design degree. Do you want to research more profitable career options? You are at the right place.

At GetEducated.com, we have more educational resources for all information you’ll need in your quest for a gratifying career.

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