Edinburgh Napier’s BSc (Hons) Games Development programme has been awarded the Creative Skillset Tick, the industry quality mark, following a rigorous assessment process by experts working in the Creative Industries.
The Creative Skillset Tick is awarded to practice-based courses which best prepare students for a career in the industry. There are more than 100 computer games courses across the UK but undergraduate programmes at only six other institutions have received the prestigious accolade.
The BSc Games Development degree at Edinburgh Napier equips students with general skills in software engineering and computing science, while specialising in games-related technologies.
The course instils the in-depth knowledge needed to develop cutting edge techniques for future generations of video games, including practical skills in programming, graphics rendering, artificial intelligence, real-time physics simulation and mathematics.
Among the teaching staff is Professor Kenny Mitchell, head of research for Disney UK, who has a long track record of delivering technology for popular video games like Split Second, Spielberg’s Boom Blox and the Harry Potter franchise.
The course was earlier awarded PlayStation®First status by Sony (SCEE), providing exclusive access to PlayStation4 Development hardware and software. The University is also a recognised Nvidia GPU Education Centre, with hardware donated by Nvidia for teaching the next generation of graphics accelerated applications.
And the success of the BSc paved the way for the launch of a new one year full-time Masters course in Game Technologies for students with a computing, engineering or maths background who want to specialise in games.
Industry experts who assessed the BSc and recommended it be awarded Creative Skillset accreditation cited the very strong Maths content and the “extremely positive” and enthusiastic attitude of University staff.
They also highlighted the way students were taught to create technical design documents as part of their assessment, and encouraged to read the latest technical papers.
Dr Kevin Chalmers, senior lecturer in Edinburgh Napier’s School of Computing, said: “This is something we have been working for since we created the course a little over five years ago, and is a testament to our ambition to support students into the computer games industry.”
Dr Ben Kenwright, programme leader for the University’s games technology degrees, added: “We are all about the raw talent and hard work that goes into making games. Our students work hard and have achieved amazing things, but keeping up to date with recent technologies is crucial.”
Nicole Hay, Senior Accreditation and Quality Manager with Creative Skillset, said: “The industry panel were very impressed with Edinburgh Napier’s BSc Hons Games Development programme.
“In particular the experienced staff, the emphasis on team work and the strong curriculum which focusses on preparing students to have the technical and maths skills employers are looking for. We are very excited to welcome the course in to the Tick family at Creative Skillset.”
The course has won the accreditation for a period of six years, subject to annual monitoring.