30 Best Bachelor’s Degrees in Video Game Design

By Kelsey Fox
March 2021 

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, careers in video game design are projected to increase 4% through 2029. In fact, the gaming industry is the fastest growing industry in entertainment — outpacing film production and dwarfing music production! So if you are considering a career in gaming, now is a great time to think about a bachelor’s degree in video game design. 

Of course, choosing a video game design degree program is much easier said than done. As with any arts degree, a program’s artistic offerings are just as important as things like cost, class size, and graduation rate. That’s why Computer Science Degree Hub went on the search for the best bachelor degrees in video game design, taking into account all of the things that should be considered. 

Ranking Methodology 

To come up with our ranking, we compiled a list of more than 50 colleges and universities offering bachelor’s degrees in video game design and/or production. We carefully studied each program, then used the following points-based system to narrow down our list to just the 30 best. 

Annual Out-of-State Tuition:
$5,000 or less — 5 points
$5,001 to $10,000 — 4 points
$10,001 to $20,000 — 3 points
$20,001 to $30,000 — 2 points
$30,001 to $40,000 — 1 point

Annual Percentage of 20-Year Net Return on Investment (ROI):
9%+ — 5 points
7-8% — 4 points
5-6% — 3 points
3-4% — 2 points
1-2% — 1 point 

Graduation Rate:
Above 90% — 5 points
Above 80% — 4 points
Above 70% — 3 points
Above 60% — 2 points
Above 50% — 1 point 

Student-to-Faculty Ratio:
5:1 and more — 4 points
10:1 and more — 3 points
15:1 and more — 2 points
20:1 and more: 1 point 

Note: In the event of a tie in points, the higher ranking was given to the degree program with the lower annual tuition cost. All tuition numbers and other statistics are accurate as of March 2021. 

#30. Savannah College of Art and Design
Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interactive Design and Game Development 

Savannah, Georgia
Annual Tuition: $38,075
Total Points: 6

Savannah College of Art and Design, or SCAD, is one of the country’s foremost art and design schools. SCAD offers a B.F.A. in Interactive Design and Game Development which can be completed either on campus or online. To earn this degree, students must complete 180 credit hours of coursework. This includes classes from one of two concentration options: game development, and interactive design and physical computing. SCAD received high points for its 70% graduation rate and mid-range annual tuition. 

#29. Cogswell University of Silicon Valley
Bachelor of Art in Game Design Art
Bachelor of Science in Game Design Engineering 

San Jose, California
Annual Tuition: $21,784
Total Points: 6

Cogswell University of Silicon Valley is a private, for-profit university located in the Bay Area. The accredited university offers a slew of game design bachelor’s degrees. These include a B.S. in Game Design Engineering and a B.A. in Game Design Art. Students who pursue the latter have the choice of two concentrations: game art or game writing. Students learn in small classes, and use real studios to create cutting-edge, professional portfolios. 

#28. Liberty University
liberty-universityBachelor of Science in Information Technology: Game Design

Lynchburg, Virginia
Annual Tuition: $21,587
Total Points: 7

Liberty University offers a B.S. in Information Technology in Game Design. The degree is residential, though Liberty also offers a game design degree via its online program. To earn this bachelor’s in game design, students must complete 120 credit hours. Required coursework includes Interactive Game Development and Digital Imaging, to name two. We gave Liberty high marks for its low annual tuition and small class sizes.  

#27. Rochester Institute of Technology
Bachelor of Science in Game Design and Development

Rochester, New York
Annual Tuition: $51,240
Total Points: 8

Rochester Institute of Technology offers a B.S. in Game Design and Development. This on-campus degree program consists of 124 credits. Students begin gaming coursework from their first day. Classes include Animation and Asset Production, and Game Development and Algorithmic Problem Solving, to name two. Students also complete an industry co-op between their junior and senior years. 

#26. DePaul University
depaul-universityBachelor of Science in Game Design

Chicago, Illinois
Annual Tuition: $41,202
Total Points: 8

DePaul University offers a B.S. in Game Design. This degree is taught on campus in Chicago. Some online courses are available. To earn the degree, students follow a set schedule of coursework. Those eager to get started will be happy to know that DePaul’s bachelor in game design includes gaming courses from the first semester of college. Even the required liberal studies courses are artistic in nature. These include Introduction to Screenwriting and Composition and Rhetoric, to name two. DePaul also gets high marks for its 74% graduation rate and small class sizes.  

#25. Drexel University
Bachelor of Science in Game Design and Production 

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Annual Tuition: $56,238
Total Points: 8

Drexel University offers a B.S. in Game Design and Production. This unique degree program is customizable. Students work with an academic advisor to create a “DegreeWorks” that best fits their personal and professional goals. Students may also choose between participating in co-ops, or six-month paid employment periods within the gaming industry. An additional option allows students to accelerate their degree program in order to complete both a bachelor’s and master’s in game design and production. Also worth mentioning are Drexel’s low student : faculty ratio, and high graduation rate of 69%.  

#24. Shawnee State University
Bachelor of Arts in Game and Simulation Arts
Bachelor of Science in Game Engineering Technology 

Portsmouth, Ohio
Annual Tuition: $14,647
Total Points: 8

Ohio-based Shawnee State University offers two different bachelor’s in video game degree programs: game and simulation arts, and game engineering technology. Regardless of a student’s choice of degree, classes are taught in state-of-the-art studios by instructors who actually work in the industry. Each year, Shawnee State hosts a Art & Technology Game Conference to introduce students to producers, studios, and industry leaders from around the world. We also give Shawnee State high marks for its low, out-of-state tuition and small class sizes. 

#23. Southern New Hampshire University
Bachelor of Science in Game Development 

Manchester, New Hampshire
Annual Tuition: $9,650
Total Points: 8

Southern New Hampshire University offers a B.S. in Game Development. This degree can be completed in person in New Hampshire, online, or in a hybrid setting. Coursework covers a variety of relevant topics, including 3-D modeling and artificial intelligence, among other subjects. Students are also supported in their quest for industry internships throughout their undergraduate career. Those who prioritize a budget-friendly game design degree would do well to consider Southern New Hampshire University. 

#22. Marist College
Bachelor of Science in Games and Emerging Media 

Poughkeepsie, New York
Annual Tuition: $42,290
Total Points: 9

Marist College offers a B.S. in Games and Emerging Media. Students may tailor their degree by choosing between two concentrations: Design, Writing, and Culture; and Technical Development and Programming. All classes are project-based. There are also opportunities to work alongside instructors on the creation of mobile games and other projects. Workshops and industry Q&As are also scheduled frequently. From an academic standpoint, Marist has an 84% graduation rate and small class sizes. 

#21. University of Texas at Dallas
University of Texas at Dallas-Top Computer Science Bachelor's DegreesMaster of Fine Arts in Arts, Technology, and Emerging Communication w/ a concentration in Game Development  

Richardson, Texas
Annual Tuition: $38,970
Total Points: 9

University of Texas at Dallas offers an M.F.A. in Arts, Technology, and Emerging Communication. Students may choose to focus this broad degree in Game Development. Coursework covers the entire production process of a game, from story structure to design. Potential classes include Educational Games Studio and History and Culture of Games, to name two. University of Texas at Dallas also receives high marks for its higher-than-average 70% graduation rate.  

#20. Indiana University, Bloomington
indiana-university-bloomingtonBachelor of Science in Game Design 

Bloomington, Indiana
Annual Tuition: $37,600
Total Points: 9

Number 20 on our list of the best bachelor’s degrees in video game design is Indiana University, Bloomington. IU’s B.S. in Game Design consists of 120 credits. Coursework covers general education and game design. The latter is included in a student’s schedule beginning their first semester. Specific classes include Game Design Foundations and Game Design Developmental Skills, to name but two. Internship opportunities also become available beginning sophomore year. If you need other good reasons to consider Indiana University, Bloomington, consider the school has a very impressive 79% graduation rate and an affordable out-of-state tuition. 

#19. Oklahoma Christian University
Bachelor of Fine Arts in Gaming and Animation 

Edmond, Oklahoma
Annual Tuition: $25,090
Total Points: 

Oklahoma Christian University offers a B.F.A. in Gaming and Animation. To graduate with this degree, students must complete 126 total credit hours, 72 of which are from gaming and animation. Required courses include Digital Painting and Team Game Production, to name two. Oklahoma Christian University also offers Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees in Gaming and Animation. 

#18. University of Central Florida
Bachelor of Arts in Digital Media w/ a specialization in Game Design

Orlando, Florida
Annual Tuition: $22,467
Total Points: 9

University of Central Florida offers a B.A. in Digital Media. Students may choose between two specializations, one of which is game design. Potential classes include Digital Sculpting and Contemporary Topics in Digital Media, to name two. Before graduation, students are also required to either put together a professional portfolio or complete an internship. University of Central Florida offers out-of-state students an affordable tuition rate. It also has a higher-than-average 72% graduation rate. 

#17. Ferris State University
Bachelor’s in Digital Animation and Game Design 

Big Rapids, Michigan
Annual Tuition: $12,376
Total Points: 9

Ferris State University in Big Rapids, Michigan offers a bachelor’s degree program in Digital Animation and Game Design. Two concentrations are available from which students may choose: game development and 3D animation. To earn this degree, students must complete a series of general education courses, followed by 52 credits worth of major classes. Finally, 21 credits of concentration-related classes are required. A junior project and internship must be completed before graduation, as should a seminar and capstone. Ferris State received high marks in our ranking system for its low out-of-state tuition and small class sizes. 

#16. Northeastern University
northeastern-universityBachelor of Fine Arts in Game Design 

Boston, Massachusetts
Annual Tuition: $55,452
Total Points: 10

Boston-based Northeastern University offers a B.F.A. in Game Design. The degree consists of 128 total semester hours, 92 of which come from the major. Potential classes include Game Interface Design and The Business of Games, to name two. Students are also encouraged to participate in two co-ops during their undergraduate years. This allows them to make connections and get their feet wet in an industry setting. As a top-ranked university, Northeastern has a slightly higher tuition rate. However, its excellent game design program, small class sizes, and graduation rate of nearly 90% more than make up for that. 

#15. University of Texas at Austin
UT Austin-Top Computer Science Bachelor's DegreesBachelor of Science in Arts and Entertainment Technologies 

Austin, Texas
Annual Tuition: $40,032
Total Points: 10

Number 15 on our list of the best game design bachelor’s degrees is University of Texas at Austin. This top-ranked university offers a B.S. in Arts and Entertainment Technologies. Major coursework begins right from the first semester, and potential classes include Level Design and Game History, to name two. The required curriculum also includes a capstone course, which brings students together in small teams to fully develop a 2D or 3D game. 

#14. Bradley University
Bachelor of Fine Arts in Game Design 

Peoria, Illinois
Annual Tuition: $35,480
Total Points: 10

Bradley University offers a B.F.A. in Game Design. The Peoria, Illinois-based university earns high marks for its mid-range annual tuition and its high graduation rate. With a student/faculty ratio of 12:1, it also offers students small classes in which to better interact with peers and instructors. The game design degree program at Bradley consists of 59 units, not including general education requirements. Coursework includes Survey of Games and Game Production, to name two. A practicum and capstone project are also required before graduation.  

#13. Lindenwood University
Bachelor of Art in Game Design 

Saint Charles, Missouri
Annual Tuition: $18,100
Total Points: 10

Lindenwood University offers a B.A. in Game Design. Students may choose to pursue this degree on campus or entirely online. Lindenwood’s game design degree consists of 54 credits, plus general education requirements. Coursework includes Visual Storytelling and Game Testing, to name two. An internship and capstone are also required before graduation. Academically, we give Lindenwood high marks for its small classes and very affordable annual tuition. 

#12. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Rensselaer Polytechnic InstituteBachelor of Science in Games and Simulation Arts and Sciences

Troy, New York
Annual Tuition: $57,012
Total Points: 11

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is a top-ranked STEM university. The school offers a B.A. in Games and Simulation Arts and Sciences. Required coursework combines hands-on creating with theory, and places a strong emphasis on collaboration. By the time students graduate, they will have a solid portfolio full of research and creative samples to show to potential employers. Students who choose to attend Rensselaer will be happy to know class sizes are small. A very impressive 85% of students who begin at Rensselaer graduate on time. 

#11. New York University
Bachelor of Fine Arts in Game Design

New York, New York
Annual Tuition: $54,880
Total Points: 11

Prestigious New York University offers a B.F.A. in Game Design via its Tisch School of the Arts. The B.F.A. prepares students for successful careers by offering coursework in seven subjects areas. All areas are crucial to a thorough education in game design, and include game business and game development, to name two. A capstone course is also required during a student’s senior year. NYU limits its classes to a 9:1 student/faculty ratio, and has an impressive graduation rate of 85%. 

#10. Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Bachelor of Science in Interactive Media & Game Development 

Worcester, Massachusetts
Annual Tuition: $54,416
Total Points: 11

Worcester Polytechnic Institute offers a B.S. in Interactive Media & Game Development. To complete this degree, students must choose to focus on either the artistic or technical side of game production. Coursework is all project based, and a big emphasis is placed on collaboration. Uniquely, students may also choose to extend their learning by one year to earn both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in the subject. Worcester Polytechnic University graduates 89% of students on time, and has a higher-than-average, 8% annual return on investment. 

#9. Miami University
Bachelor of Science in Games and Simulation 

Oxford, Ohio
Annual Tuition: $36,650
Total Points: 11

Miami University in Oxford, Ohio offers a B.S. in Games and Simulation. To graduate with this degree, students must complete 124 credit hours, including general education courses. Required game design classes include Game Usability & Human Factors, and Game Engine Scripting, to name two. A three-course “capstone studio” is also required before graduation. In order to tailor their degree towards their professional goals, students may choose to concentrate their degree on one area of game production. 

#8. University of Florida
University of Florida-Top Computer Science Bachelor's DegreesBachelor of Arts in Digital Arts & Sciences 

Gainesville, Florida
Annual Tuition: $28,659
Total Points: 

University of Florida offers a B.A. in Digital Arts and Sciences. Students pursuing this degree complete coursework in all stages of the development process, including animation and game design. Potential classes include 3D Digital Animation Techniques and Entrepreneurship in New Media, among others. An internship and a production practicum are also required before graduation. 

#7. University of Utah
university-of-utahBachelor of Science in Games

Salt Lake City, Utah
Annual Tuition: $27,220
Total Points: 11

University of Utah offers a B.S. in Games. This unique and broad degree is ideal for students who wish to pursue careers in the production of any kind of game, including video games. The degree requires 141 total credit hours, including general education. Game design courses begin right from a student’s first semester on campus. Coursework options include Intro to Design Thinking and Ethics in Games, to name two. Two senior projects are also required before graduation. 

#6. University of Wisconsin, Stout
Bachelor of Fine Arts in Game Design and Development

Menomonie, Wisconsin
Annual Tuition: $17,455
Total Points: 11

University of Wisconsin at Stout offers a B.F.A. in Game Design and Development. One hundred twenty credit hours are required for the B.F.A., 80 of which come from major coursework. Required classes include Pixel and Vector Art, and Video Game Development, to name two. A selection of studio requirements also ensures students graduate with a well-rounded arts education. University of Wisconsin at Stout charges an affordable annual tuition to out-of-state students, and boasts a yearly return on investment of 7%. 

#5. University of Southern California
Bachelor of Arts in Interactive Entertainment

Los Angeles, California
Annual Tuition: $60,275
Total Points: 12

Prestigious University of Southern California offers a B.A. in Interactive Entertainment. The degree consists of 128 total credit hours, including general education. Potential major courses include Game Design Workshop and Interface Design for Games, to name  two. An emphasis is placed on group projects to allow students to gain experience working on a creative team. USC has an overall student/teacher ratio of 9:1, and graduates a whopping 92% of its students.  

#4. Michigan State University
Michigan-Top Computer Science Bachelor's DegreesBachelor of Arts in Games and Interactive Media

East Lansing, Michigan
Annual Tuition: $39,766
Total Points: 12

Michigan State University offers a B.A. in Games and Interactive Media. To graduate with this degree, students must complete 120 total credit hours. Required major courses include Game Level Design and Topics in Game Studies, to name two. Students are also encouraged to participate in an internship, and to register for classes on special topics. Michigan State offers out-of-state students a mid-range annual tuition, plus a [much] higher-than-average yearly return on investment. 

#3. Baker College
baker-collegeBachelor of Science in Game Software Development 

Owosso, Michigan
Annual Tuition: $10,160
Total Points: 12

Kicking off our top three is Baker College. Baker offers a B.S. in Game Software and Development. The degree consists of 120 credit hours. Coursework covers both the artistic elements of game design, and the programming and computer science. Potential courses include Game Design and Analysis, and Unreal Game Programming, to name two. Before graduation, students must also complete a senior project and a 150-hour work experience course. Located in Michigan, Baker offers an extremely affordable tuition, as well as one of the highest yearly returns on investment of any school on our list. 

#2. Georgia Institute of Technology
Georgia Tech-Top Computer Science Bachelor's DegreesBachelor of Science in Computational Media

Atlanta, Georgia
Annual Tuition: $33,964
Total Points: 13

Top-ranked STEM school Georgia Tech offers a B.S. in Computational Media. This degree program ensures students graduate with a well-rounded knowledge of all things computational media. Seven focus areas are emphasized, including games and narrative. Potential classes include Game Design as a Cultural Practice and Principles of Interaction Design, to name  two. Georgia Tech has a graduation rate of 90%, plus a 9% annual return on investment.  

#1. North Carolina State University at Raleigh
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science w/ a concentration in Game Design 

Raleigh, North Carolina
Annual Tuition: $29,220
Total Points: 13

Topping our list of the best bachelor’s degrees in video game design is North Carolina State University at Raleigh. The university offers a B.S. in Computer Science with a concentration in Game Design. Students are required to complete a total of 121 credits. This includes general education, plus various courses in both computer science and game development specifically. North Carolina State offers out-of-state students a competitive annual tuition rate, plus small class sizes, and high graduation rate. 

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