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Game Design and Esports Programs Offer New Options for Students


JONESBORO – Students looking for certificates or degree programs in the growing fields of esports and game design can take advantage of new opportunities at Arkansas State University.

The two fields work hand-in-hand for students seeking to work in the emerging fields of esports and gaming.

Arkansas State offers two undergraduate degree pathways in game design.  The first is a 100% online Bachelor of Science degree in digital technology and design with an emphasis in game design.  Within the Department of Art + Design, the university also offers a game design emphasis in its Bachelor of Fine Arts studio program.   Both the programs bring together the photography and graphic elements of creating a gaming space with the theories of game design.

“We are open to a wide range of students and their goals, but we do have a strong focus on how design, both graphically and thematically, leads to the creation of compelling games,” Cameron Buckley, assistant professor of graphic design said.  “The traditional art courses can all have a gaming point of view.”

As a specialty area within the Department of Art + Design, students learn to create worlds for mobile and cloud-based gaming.

“The gaming part of the design work includes the full spectrum of games from board game design to three-dimensional world development,” Buckley said.  “It is mobile app games-to-console gaming.”

Home to one of the largest and most successful club esport teams, A-State students can also study how to manage and promote esports with the new certificate program.

The esport certificate is a part of A-State’s sport management program, and focuses on the growing opportunities of applying traditional sport management techniques and skills to the esport competition space.

“The seven-course program is designed to teach the management side of esports,” Dr. Hoyeol Yu, assistant professor in sport management, said. “Geared toward a student who wants to work in the esports industry.  There are more and more job opportunities in the field, and increasingly ‘traditional’ sports franchises are adding esports to their portfolio.  The certificate will help prepare students for the industry.”

The certificate also covers live esport production for streaming video, and shares resources with both the esport club and the School of Media and Journalism, which also produces live twitch feeds for the esport club.

To learn more about each program, go to AState.edu/Degrees to locate the game design and esport program descriptions.