March 16, 2016

Game design courses earn national recognition

by Pete Rosenbery

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Southern Illinois University Carbondale offers students one of the best undergraduate opportunities in the country in game design, according to The Princeton Review. 

The magazine on Tuesday, March 15, ranked SIU 46th among the top 50 undergraduate schools for game design for 2016. The Princeton Review also released the top 25 graduate schools for game design. This is the magazine’s seventh annual ranking. 

SIU Carbondale offers courses in game design and development through the multidisciplinary efforts of the College of Mass Communication and Media Arts and the School of Information Systems and Applied Technologies in the College of Applied Sciences and Arts. 

According to the magazine, the 58 schools that made one or both lists are based on a 2015 survey of 150 institutions in the United States, Canada and abroad that offer game design degree programs or courses. The survey gathered data ranging from game design academic offerings and lab facilities, to their graduates’ starting salaries and career achievements. Four areas – academics, faculty, technology and career -- were analyzed. 

The program is “an example of MCMA looking always to be at the cutting edge of media trends and respond to students' interests. It is also an example of the potential of interdisciplinary collaborations across academic units,” Dean Dafna Lemish said. 

John Reid Perkins-Buzo, an assistant professor in the Department of Radio, Television, Digital Media, noted the department offers a wide variety of courses in game design and game art, along with 2-D and 3-D animation. 

“I’m really excited,” he said. “This shows that we are moving forward in developing game design and game art in areas that we never had before.”