April 04, 2017

SIU moves up in Princeton Review’s game design ranking

by Pete Rosenbery

CARBONDALE, Ill. – Southern Illinois University Carbondale has again earned recognition for offering students one of the best undergraduate opportunities in the country in game design, according to The Princeton Review. 

The magazine recently ranked SIU #43 in the nation among the top 50 undergraduate schools for game design for 2017 – a rise of three spots from a year ago. This is the magazine’s eighth annual ranking. 

“We’ve seen growth in interest and enrollment in the gaming classes both in MCMA and other parts of the university,” John Reid Perkins-Buzo, assistant professor of animation and game development in the College of Mass Communication and Media Arts, said. 

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

The ranking was based on the publication’s 2016 survey of administrators at more than 150 institutions that offer game design coursework, programs or degrees in countries including the United States and Canada. 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. 

Perkins-Buzo said the curriculum for the minor is undergoing revision to include new courses. The changes will make the pursuit of game design studies much easier. 

Perkins-Buzo noted he is teaching two new Radio, Television, and Digital Media classes associated with the minor – Gaming Narratives and Writing for Game Production – that have 16 and 14 students enrolled, respectively. 

“The demand for these classes is growing,” he said. “We have a very promising future in this area.”