George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

Computer Game Design Admissions

Game on. In the Computer Game Design program, students use state-of-the-art technology to create their own games from day one.

As a Computer Games Design major, you will study both the sciences and the arts in a collaborative, problem-solving environment. The program offers a BFA undergraduate degree, a graduate MA degree, a Game Design minor, a minor with sports management, as well as international exchange partnerships. Another plus: the Computer Game Design program hosts the only U.S. Serious Game Institute, which focuses on game-related applied research and innovations.

Application to Computer Game Design is a two-step process.

Step One: Apply to George Mason through the Common Application or visit http://admissions.gmu.edu/ for more information. You do not need to wait to get a response from Admissions before moving to step two. For current Mason students, see step two below.

Step Two: In addition to the application to George Mason University, Computer Game Design, BFA requires the submission of two writing samples (see prompts below) and allows applicants the option to submit samples of artwork. You are strongly encouraged to submit your writing sample simultaneously with your application to the university. 

Submit your materials through Slideroom. Writing sample submission deadlines are the same as university application deadlines. You can begin submission of your writing sample starting August 1.

Writing Prompts

Part One:

Write a 250- to 300-word essay about your interest in computer game design. Address why studying game design will help fulfill your intellectual/artistic, and professional goals, detail what industry career path interests you, and talk about how your studies will help you achieve that goal.

Part Two:

Write a 500-word review for a current computer or video game. Break down the game into its various elements and critique how they work in concert to deliver a unified experience to the player (or don't). How does the game compare with other current games in its genre? Support your claims with reasoned arguments.

OR

Write a 500-word response to an article about game culture. Find a news article or blog post that discusses race, violence, gender, or other current issues in games (please include a link). How do you see the article as relevant to your studies and future plans as a professional game designer? Do you agree with the author’s claims? Why? How might designers and players address this issue in the future?

OR

Write a 500-word “pitch” for an original game. Present an idea to potential producers/investors. Outline the mechanics, world, and characters of the game (be sure to include the title, genre, and target audience). Why would your game succeed? How is it different from other games on the market?

Part Three: (optional)

Submit a web link to a video highlighting any relevant creative work, including, but not limited to: animation; coding; music; writing; or projects you’ve created. Credit any additional authors who have contributed in any way to the assets included, and provide brief written commentary to contextualize your work. (Provide a password if the content is protected).

Minors

Computer Game Design

Portfolio reviews are not required for students wishing to pursue a minor in Computer Game Design. The Computer Game Design minor requires 18-19 credits of coursework. For more information, please visit the Computer Game Design Minor page in the university catalog.

Please contact Jeremy Tuohy (wtuohy@gmu.edu) to schedule an appointment to declare the minor.

Sport and Computer Game Design

Portfolio reviews are not required for students wishing to pursue a minor in Sport and Computer Game Design. The Sport and Computer Game Design minor requires 18-credits of coursework. For more information, please visit the Sport and Computer Game Design Minor page in the university catalog.

Please contact Craig Esherick (cesheric@gmu.edu) to schedule an appointment to declare the minor.

Visit Us

Open Houses

Applicants to the BFA in Computer Game Design program are encouraged to attend one of our program open houses. These events will allow students to meet faculty and students in our program and participate in activities related to game design and portfolio development.

Note: Students who are unable to attend an open house are still able to apply for acceptance to the Computer Game Design program.

  • Learn about and use the latest industry-level software and tools.
  • Meet with faculty and students to get answers to your questions about our program.
  • Learn tools to get started developing your portfolio for internship interviews.
  • Find out about exciting opportunities like special topics courses, the study abroad program with the University of Abertay Dundee, Scotland, and more info about upcoming speakers and events.

Open House Dates

Please check back soon for 2017-18 Open House dates.

Please contact Mary Bean by email or call 703-993-5734 to reserve your space for an open house. Space may be limited due to high demand.

Contact us

Email us or call us: 703-993-5734. Visit us at the Art and Design Building, 2019, George Mason University, 4400 University Drive, Fairfax, VA 22030.

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