Unique course at Abertay offers games developers fast-track to the top

Young games developers are being urged to fast-track their careers by securing one of a limited number of free places on a unique postgraduate degree course at the University of Abertay Dundee.

The Master of Professional Practice in Computer Games Development (MProf) was launched last year and is the only degree of its kind available in the UK.

The MProf is a 12-month full-time professional qualification designed in conjunction with the industry, and featuring continual mentoring by professionals who themselves work on some of the world’s best selling titles. Students gain experience of studio-based work and industry-set project briefs, and graduate as the potential industry leaders of the future.

Now, Abertay University is offering places on the course with full tuition scholarships available, meaning that there are no tuition fees payable. Several of the free places have already been snapped up, and Abertay is urging anyone interested to act quickly to take advantage of this opportunity.

Dr Louis Natanson, Academic Director of the Institute of Arts, Media and Computer Games at Abertay, said:“This is a genuinely unique chance for young developers to leap-frog many of their contemporaries and gain a foothold higher up what is a really competitive ladder.

“It’s definitely not for the faint-hearted– only the most dedicated gaming professionals with a strong track record and a very good first degree in a relevant subject need apply.

“We expect students on this course to develop the professional skills and knowledge relevant to leadership roles in the computer games industry. They must demonstrate excellence in their specialist areas, as well as professionalism, flexibility and adaptability in team working situations, and creativity and innovation in product development,” he added.

To illustrate the caliber of applicant the MProf is attracting, Dr Natanson revealed that two of the first group on the course, who are expected to graduate this summer, were offered top jobs in the industry within weeks of enrolling. Another student currently on the course led one of the winning teams in last year’s Dare to be Digital competition, which went on to win two BAFTAs last month.

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NOTES FOR EDITORS

Professional accreditation The MProf Computer Games Development will be approved by Skillset, the national sector skills council for creative media, as part of the Skillset Media Academy Network. Specific accreditation under Skillset’s postgraduate games courses accreditation scheme, and the British Computing Society, will be sought as appropriate.

Abertay University enjoys an international reputation for offering world-class education in a range of games industry relevant awards. The University’s status as a Skillset Media Academy, alongside accredited courses in game arts and technology, confirms industry recognition of the quality of its graduates and the relevance of its courses.

Computer games technology research at Abertay is already developing simulation tools for activities such as firearms training for the police, infection control models for the health service, and energy forecasting and town planning for local authorities.

Dare to be Digital is organised and run by Abertay University, with sponsorship from Turner Broadcasting, Intel, Wacom, NCR, the Scottish Government, Scottish Enterprise and Dundee City Council. Technology support is provided by Adobe, Autodesk, Codesion, Crytek, Emergent, Hansoft and Sony. Teams of student programmers and artists compete in a 10-week intensive 'hot-house' development environment over the summer vacation, building fully-functioning prototypes for assessment by industry judges and a public vote at Dare ProtoPlay, scheduled for the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August.


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