Game Design and Production | Abertay University

Game Design and Production
BA (Hons)

Harness your creativity and get set to push the boundaries of games making by studying in the thriving city that spawned Grand Theft Auto.

Course detail

Start Date



4 years (full-time) or 3 years (accelerated)

Degree Classification

BA (Hons)



Why Study Game Design and Production?

Learn to harness your creativity and get set to push the boundaries of games making by studying in the thriving city that spawned Grand Theft Auto (GTA). Gain a degree from one of the most prestigious game design schools in the world.

Developed for creative and technically minded people with a desire to become a key part of the games industry, this degree is designed to make you work-ready, teaching you game concept and asset creation, game prototyping, and production and leadership skills.

As a student on this programme, you will:

  • Work alongside artists, programmers and audio specialists in small development teams to design and develop computer games
  • Study the historical context and fundamentals of game design, interaction and narrative theory
  • Develop professional skills in level design, concept development, project management and entrepreneurship
  • Learn how interactive entertainment products are designed, developed and marketed

You’ll be encouraged to work creatively and professionally as a game designer, communicating concepts through prototypes, game assets, documentation and presentations, in addition to honing your communication and management skills through multidisciplinary projects.

Your Journey Starts Here

At Abertay, we enjoy an international reputation for excellence in computer games education. This stems from our unique student experience, which places you in a simulated workplace that promotes innovative game creation.

Entry Requirements

Please visit our Entry from College pages for suitable College courses.

Qualification TypeGrade RequirementsEssential Subjects
Irish HighersH2H3H3H3-
International Baccalaureate30 Points-
BTEC Extended DiplomaDDMBusiness, Creative Media Production, IT
SWAP-Our Entry from College pages list approved SWAP courses
HNC/HND-Our Entry from College pages list approved HNC/HND courses
Qualification TypeGrade RequirementsEssential Subjects
Advanced HigherAABComputing and Business Studies
A-LevelAABComputing and Business Studies
HNC/HND-Our Entry from College pages list approved HNC/HND courses

Information for International Applicants

Please provide certified proof of your English language level. Our accredited International English Foundation Course can help. To further enhance your academic English, Intensive English for Academic Purposes can help you achieve your potential.

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English Language Requirements

Explore English language requirements for entry to Abertay University.

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English Language Courses

Discover the range of English language courses on offer at Abertay University.

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Visa Information

Learn more about visa requirements for studying at Abertay University.

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Not sure if you're eligible for entry?

If you have the potential and motivation to study at university, regardless of your background or personal circumstances, we welcome your application.

We understand some people have faced extra challenges before applying to university, which is why we consider the background in which your academic grades have been achieved when making an offer.

If you expect to receive passes in three Scottish Highers (grades A-C) and have either ...

  • been in care
  • participated in a targeted aspiration-raising programme such as LIFT OFF, LEAPS, FOCUS West, or Aspire North
  • no family background of going to university
  • attended a school or lived in an area where not many people go to university

... we encourage you to submit an application.

Accelerated Degree

If you’re keen to undertake the accelerated degree, you’ll complete the first two years of the degree programme alongside those students following the non-accelerated route.

Acceleration starts in May at the end of second year. The table below illustrates the difference between the two routes.

Academic YearTermAccelerated RouteNon-Accelerated Route
Year 1Term 1 (Sept-Dec)Term 1Term 1
Year 1Term 2 (Jan-May)Term 2Term 2
Year 1Term 3 (May-Aug)--
Year 2Term 1 (Sept-Dec)Term 3Term 3
Year 2Term 2 (Jan-May)Term 4Term 4
Year 2Term 3 (May-Aug)Term 5-
Year 3Term 1 (Sept-Dec)Term 6Term 5
Year 3Term 2 (Jan-May)Term 7Term 6
Year 3Term 3 (May-Aug)Term 8 (Honours degree completed)-
Year 4Term 1 (Sept-Dec)-Term 7
Year 4Term 2 (Jan-May)-Term 8 (Honours degree completed)
Year 4Term 3 (May-Aug)--

Key Modules (2017/18)

Developing Game Concepts (DES101)

This module will provide students with an introduction to the games industry by engaging them with d

Pre-Visualisation (DES102)

The module will introduce students to the production of visual assets and media typically employed i

Game Engines and the Principles of Programming (DES105)

The module provides an introduction to computational thinking for students who want to work in the g

Quality Assurance & User Experience (DES103)

This module introduces the student to the quality assurance process, user experience design and prov

Game Studies and Criticism (DES104)

In recent years, the democratisation of games technologies has made entry into game development easi

Gameplay and Narrative Design (DES201)

The module will introduce students to the knowledge, processes and techniques necessary to formulate

3D Design for Games (DES204)

This module will introduce students to the 3D game art pipeline, providing them with the knowledge a

Level Design and Scripting (DES205)

This module develops student skills in the use of game engines with an emphasis on the creation of g

Design Contexts (DES202)

The module is concerned with the contexts of design across a range of creative fields, and challenge

Interactive Media Production (DES203)

A complete introduction to the processes and purposes of designing and developing a piece of interac

Professional Project: Planning and Prototyping (DES301)

For this module, students will be required to work together on an interactive media project as part

Production & Leadership (DES303)

This module develops an in-depth understanding of the issues around the production process and manag

Spatial Constructs (DES306)

In this module students will engage with the creative and technical processes involved in the design

Professional Project: Development and Delivery (DES302)

Working within a multidisciplinary team, students will develop an interactive media prototype based

Gameplay Prototyping (DES304)

Through a series of combined lecture/practical sessions students will develop the technical and crea

Critical and Contextual Studies (DES305)

This module is designed to enhance students? ability to set theoretical and critical frameworks to u

Honours Project Proposal and Development (ART405)

This module will allow students to formulate a contextual, theoretical, and practical foundation in

Professional Contexts & Entrepreneurship (DES401)

This module requires students to engage critically with the creative industries. Students should exp

Honours Project (3) (ART403)

This module challenges the student to undertake an extensive creative research project where they fu

Honours Project Dissertation (ART404)

This module approaches research as an active process of inquiry that leads to the production of a di

How the Course Works

About Your Modules

The module information shown here describes the modules our students are taking this year. The modules do change over time to keep our programmes up-to-date and relevant. This means the exact modules you take could be different. If you receive an offer to study with us, you will receive a Programme Information document that sets out exactly which modules you can expect to take as part of your Abertay degree programme.

Please note: As well as Key Modules outlined above, you may also be required to choose Elective Modules.

Dare Academy

Every year, we run the prestigious Dare Academy project, where teams of students are given a unique month-long summer hot-housing experience with games industry mentors to build and polish an industry-standard game.

We then showcase the games at EGX, the UK's biggest games event, and the top three teams are flown out to visit international games partners and to be profiled.

This is a unique offer for Abertay games students and it ensures you stand out from the crowd.

If you’re applying from overseas or from outside Scotland, we have scholarships available to make your studies more affordable.

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Rest of UK Abertay Scholarship - £2,300 per year for four years

This scholarship is intended to support students from England, Wales and Northern Ireland to study at Abertay. Scholarship is paid directly into your bank account in two instalments each year to support you with living and travel costs. No application necessary.

International Abertay Scholarship - £2,300 per year for four years

This scholarship is intended to support students from international countries (outside of the EU) to study at Abertay. Scholarship is paid directly into your bank account in two instalments each year to support you with living and travel costs. No application necessary.

In addition, we offer a range of corporate/philanthropic scholarships shown below, which are available to all students to support your studies with us.

The Lothian Family

A £5,000 award for undergraduate students with financial or social difficulties which may prevent them from studying at Abertay.

The Robert Reid Bursary

Two £500 awards for students who have overcome challenges to attend university.

Ninja Kiwi

The Ninja Kiwi Scholarship is a one-year scholarship of £1,500 and is open to students who are entering Year 4 of Games courses.

Programme Fees for 2018

Scottish & EU students


Fees shown are payable annually and may be subject to increase each year.

Please see our Undergraduate Fees and Funding page for further details. 

English, Welsh & Northern Irish Students


Fees shown are payable annually and may be subject to increase each year.

Please see our Undergraduate Fees and Funding page for further details. . 

International Students


Fees shown are payable annually and may be subject to increase each year.

Please see our Undergraduate Fees and Funding page for further details. 


We work closely with leading game developers such as 4J Studios, Sony Interactive Entertainment, Microsoft and Ubisoft, making graduates from this course highly employable within the games industry.

Previous Abertay graduates have found employment as:

  • Game designers
  • Associate producers
  • Quality assurance testers
  • Community managers

These roles are spread across a variety of projects, including AAA games, independent, mobile and online marketplaces. The production and leadership theme of the programme has also thrust entrepreneurial graduates towards forming their own companies in the games or media sectors.

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Choose Your Path

Small games studios to national and international media groups require talented individuals with expertise in team management, design and production control of new media products. The games industry offers long term career potential through its continued expansion.

Prospects have never been better, as it’s a growing and exciting industry, with a global demand for skilled development staff.

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Industry Links

There are excellent industrial links across all the games programmes at Abertay.

You’ll receive guest lectures and demonstrations from external companies as part of normal teaching. Abertay Game Lab also runs a series of special events and masterclasses with well-known local and international designers and developers. These are on offer to all students.

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Game Design and Production Graduates

Meet Hannah Drummond and Arran Topalian, who both graduated with a Game Design and Production degree from Abertay.

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Hannah Drummond

Meet Hannah Drummond, a Game Design and Production graduate from Abertay, who has gone on to study an MScR in Digital Media and Culture.

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Arran Topalian

Meet Arran Topalian, a Game Design and Production graduate, who landed an internship with Microsoft during his time at Abertay.

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Games Showcase

Check out a selection of exciting and fascinating games created by students on our world-leading games courses ...

Be Inspired

Programme Leader - Game Design and Production

Dr Robin Sloan

Dr Robin Sloan

School of Design and Informatics | Lecturer

View profile

Explore our Dundee Campus

Abertay is conveniently located on a city centre campus, with all of its buildings within a quarter of a mile of each other. Shops, recreational facilities and the main bus and train stations are a short walk away.

Our Campus

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Why Abertay?

We're proud of our students and graduates, and we believe there's no better place to study if you're looking for a degree that helps you stand out as an exceptional candidate in an increasingly competitive job market.

Why Abertay?

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Come to an Open Day

An Open Day is your chance to get an up close and personal experience of the University and the city. You'll come away with all the information you need about us and the courses you're interested in.

Open Days

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Living in Dundee

Dundee is a city of contrasts. It's vibrant and cosmopolitan, but also friendly, compact and affordable. The first UK city to be awarded UNESCO City of Design status, Dundee has a rich history of innovation and creativity, and, in recent years, has become a hub for the digital industries.

Living in Dundee & Scotland

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Unistats collates comparable information in areas students have identified as important in making decisions about what and where to study. The core information it contains is called the Unistats dataset (formerly the Key Information Set (KIS)).

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