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BA (Hons) Computer Games Design: Story Development

Course summary

Whether it’s the fun of Super Mario or the horror of Resident Evil that consumes you, this is your chance to convert your passion for playing games into knowledge about how to create and design them.

 
You’ll get the most out of our course if you come with an interest in all kinds of games – board, card and pen-and-paper - not just digital ones. You’ll be amazed what you can learn from games like Munchkin or Dungeons and Dragons.

We run two games courses at UEL, subtly different but both sharing the same focus on designing games and game play.

“Frankly, there are no other courses similar,” says Senior Lecturer David Dorrington. “We’re not a computing course nor an arts course. We’re about designing experiences of play, designing emotional experiences, allowing students to develop a skill set so they can develop a game from scratch.”

Our course will equip you, like many of our successful graduates, for a role in the expanding games industry.  We're justly proud of the imagination and quality of our students’ work.

By the end of your course, you should be playing a game you designed yourself – and hopefully following in the footsteps of the many UEL graduates now making their mark in the games industry.

Start date

September 2017

Attendance

  • Full-time
  • Part-time

Learning

  • On campus

Fees

Sept 2017 UK/EU/Full-time
£9,250
Sept 2017 International
£11,440
Course options
Length
UCAS code
Degree
3 yrs
GWLF
1

We’ll give you the capability to come up with an interesting idea and take it from paper to screen – prototyping it and developing it both individually and as part of a multi-disciplinary team in a way that mirrors the professional games industry.

2

You’ll have the opportunity to create a game for leading professional clients, from small independent development studios such as Dlala to international multi-platform entertainment giants such as Endemol.

3

You’ll taught be a mixture of renowned academics and industry professionals with global reputations such as Paul Callaghan and Richard Leinfellner, the former vice-president of Electronic Arts. You’ll also be inspired by the industry heavyweights who visit UEL on a regular basis as part of our guest lecture programme.

Ben Nizan
Computer Games Design, BA (Hons)

I don’t think I’ve ever been made to feel more welcome.  Being surrounded by people who are friendly, social, and share your interests has to be one of the best things I can say about my university experience.

Fees and funding

Tuition Fee Loan

You can apply for a loan to cover the cost of your tuition fees, which will be paid directly to UEL. There are no up-front fees required. Repayment only starts after you finish your course and are earning over £21,000. If you haven’t finished repaying your loan after 30 years it will be automatically cancelled.

To apply visit gov.uk/student-finance

Maintenance Loan

You can apply for a loan to help with living costs such as food, travel and accommodation. How much you can borrow depends on where you live and study, and whether you are currently on welfare benefits. The maximum loan you can apply for is £11,998.

To apply visit gov.uk/student-finance

Supplementary Grants

The government also offer the following additional support:

-          Parent’s Learning Allowance

-          Adult Dependants' Grant

-          Childcare Grant

-          Disabled Students’ Allowance

For further information visit gov.uk/student-finance

We appreciate that finance is one of the key considerations when you're applying to university. That's why alongside your Government loan, you can apply for scholarships to help towards your finances. We've invested over £2 million worth of scholarships to financially assist new students, starting in September 2017. If you're awarded a scholarship you don't need to pay it back.

All students will receive:

Free Samsung Galaxy Note tablet pre-loaded with core e-books, which is yours to keep

Welcome Bursary - £140

Schemes for which you can apply

Vice chancellor Scholarship - up to £27,000 over three years

Dean Scholarship - up to £13,500 over three years

Merit Scholarship - up to £7,500 over three years

Family Scholarship - £1,000

School Entrance Scholarship - £1,500

The Helena Kennedy Foudation - £1,500

Partner Scholarship Scheme - £1,500

Sports Scholarships - up to £6,000

Team UEL Scholarship - £1,000

Care Leaver and Foyer Bursary - £1,000

Civic Engagement Scholarship - £1,000

EU Start-up Fund (EU Only) - £1,000

Going Global – awards range from £300 - £700

Some courses offer the option of a placement year, giving you the chance to gain valuable work experience in a relevant industry between your second and third years. If you are an international student on a Tier 4 visa, you are able to undertake a placement if it is an integral and assessed part of your course.

In 2017/18 placement year tuition fees are set at £1,030.

There are a number of external organisations that offer financial help to
students. Please see the below list to view additional support options.
Alternatively, you can visit the Scholarship Search website.

Please note that the University of East London is not responsible for
the content of these external sites and is not associated in any way
with the funding schemes and their application processes.

Bank Of England Scholarship Programme

European Funding Guide

The Student Disability Association Fund

Sir John Cass’s Foundation

The Leverhulme Trade Charities Trust

The Newby Trust

Walcot Foundation

Scholarships Search

The Student Money Advice and Rights Team (SMART) are here to help you navigate your finances while you're a student at the University of East London.

We can give you advice, information and guidance on government and university funds so that you receive your full funding entitlement.

Email: study@uel.ac.uk

Phone: 020 8223 4444

Tuition fees
UK
£9,250
You don't need to pay this up front
Tuition fees are subject to annual change. Fees for future years will be published in due course.

Tuition Fee Loan

You can apply for a loan to cover the cost of your tuition fees, which will be paid directly to UEL. There are no up-front fees required. Repayment only starts after you finish your course and are earning over £21,000. If you haven’t finished repaying your loan after 30 years it will be automatically cancelled.

For further information visit gov.uk/student-finance

We appreciate that finance is one of the key considerations when you're applying to university. That's why alongside your Government loan, you can apply for scholarships to help towards your finances. We've invested over £2 million worth of scholarships to financially assist new students, starting in September 2016. If you're awarded a scholarship you don't need to pay it back.

All students will receive:
Free Samsung Galaxy Note tablet pre-loaded with core e-books, which is yours to keep
Welcome Bursary - £140

Schemes for which you can apply
Sports Scholarships - up to £6,000
Family Scholarship
- £1,000
Civic Engagement Scholarship - £1,000
Going Global – awards range from £300 - £700

Some courses offer the option of a placement year, giving you the chance to gain valuable work experience in a relevant industry between your second and third years. If you are an international student on a Tier 4 visa, you are able to undertake a placement if it is an integral and assessed part of your course.

In 2017/18 placement year tuition fees are set at £1,030.

There are a number of external organisations that offer financial help to
students. Please see the below list to view additional support options.
Alternatively, you can visit the Scholarship Search website.

Please note that the University of East London is not responsible for
the content of these external sites and is not associated in any way
with the funding schemes and their application processes.

Bank Of England Scholarship Programme

European Funding Guide

The Student Disability Association Fund

Sir John Cass’s Foundation

The Leverhulme Trade Charities Trust

The Newby Trust

Walcot Foundation

Scholarships Search

The Student Money Advice and Rights Team (SMART) are here to help you navigate your finances while you're a student at the University of East London.

We can give you advice, information and guidance on government and university funds so that you receive your full funding entitlement.

Email: study@uel.ac.uk

Phone: 020 8223 4444

Tuition fees
UK
£2,310

Price per 30 credit module

Tuition fees are subject to annual change. Fees for future years will be published in due course.

Tuition Fee Loan

You can apply for a loan to cover the cost of your tuition fees, which will be paid directly to UEL. There are no up-front fees required. Repayment only starts after you finish your course and are earning over £21,000. If you haven’t finished repaying your loan after 30 years it will automatically be cancelled.

For information visit gov.uk/student-finance

Please note EU students can only apply for their funding using a paper application form.
To download a form visit www.gov.uk/student-finance-forms

We appreciate that finance is one of the key considerations when you're applying to university. That's why alongside your Government loan, you can apply for scholarships to help towards your finances. We've invested over £2 million worth of scholarships to financially assist new students, starting in September 2017. If you're awarded a scholarship you don't need to pay it back.

All students will receive:

Free Samsung Galaxy Note tablet pre-loaded with core e-books, which is yours to keep

Welcome Bursary - £140

Schemes for which you can apply

Vice chancellor Scholarship - up to £27,000 over three years

Dean Scholarship - up to £13,500 over three years

Merit Scholarship - up to £7,500 over three years

Family Scholarship - £1,000

School Entrance Scholarship - £1,500

The Helena Kennedy Foudation - £1,500

Partner Scholarship Scheme - £1,500

Sports Scholarships - up to £6,000

Team UEL Scholarship - £1,000

Care Leaver and Foyer Bursary - £1,000

Civic Engagement Scholarship - £1,000

EU Start-up Fund (EU Only) - £1,000

Going Global – awards range from £300 - £700

Some courses offer the option of a placement year, giving you the chance to gain valuable work experience in a relevant industry between your second and third years. If you are an international student on a Tier 4 visa, you are able to undertake a placement if it is an integral and assessed part of your course.

In 2017/18 placement year tuition fees are set at £1,030.

There are a number of external organisations that offer financial help to
students. Please see the below list to view additional support options.
Alternatively, you can visit the Scholarship Search website.

Please note that the University of East London is not responsible for
the content of these external sites and is not associated in any way
with the funding schemes and their application processes.

Bank Of England Scholarship Programme

European Funding Guide

The Student Disability Association Fund

Sir John Cass’s Foundation

The Leverhulme Trade Charities Trust

The Newby Trust

Walcot Foundation

Scholarships Search

The Student Money Advice and Rights Team (SMART) are here to help you navigate your finances while you're a student at the University of East London.

We can give you advice, information and guidance on government and university funds so that you receive your full funding entitlement.

Email: study@uel.ac.uk

Phone: 020 8223 4444

Tuition fees
EU
£9,250
You don't need to pay this upfront
Tuition fees are subject to annual change. Fees for future years will be published in due course.

Tuition Fee Loan

You can apply for a loan to cover the cost of your tuition fees, which will be paid directly to UEL. There are no up-front fees required. Repayment only starts after you finish your course and are earning over £21,000. If you haven’t finished repaying your loan after 30 years it will be automatically cancelled.

For further information visit gov.uk/student-finance

We appreciate that finance is one of the key considerations when you're applying to university. That's why alongside your Government loan, you can apply for scholarships to help towards your finances. We've invested over £2 million worth of scholarships to financially assist new students, starting in September 2016. If you're awarded a scholarship you don't need to pay it back.

All students will receive:
Free Samsung Galaxy Note tablet pre-loaded with core e-books, which is yours to keep
Welcome Bursary - £140

Schemes for which you can apply
Sports Scholarships - up to £6,000
Family Scholarship
- £1,000
Civic Engagement Scholarship - £1,000
Going Global – awards range from £300 - £700

Some courses offer the option of a placement year, giving you the chance to gain valuable work experience in a relevant industry between your second and third years. If you are an international student on a Tier 4 visa, you are able to undertake a placement if it is an integral and assessed part of your course.

In 2017/18 placement year tuition fees are set at £1,030.

There are a number of external organisations that offer financial help to
students. Please see the below list to view additional support options.
Alternatively, you can visit the Scholarship Search website.

Please note that the University of East London is not responsible for
the content of these external sites and is not associated in any way
with the funding schemes and their application processes.

Bank Of England Scholarship Programme

European Funding Guide

The Student Disability Association Fund

Sir John Cass’s Foundation

The Leverhulme Trade Charities Trust

The Newby Trust

Walcot Foundation

Scholarships Search

The Student Money Advice and Rights Team (SMART) are here to help you navigate your finances while you're a student at the University of East London.

We can give you advice, information and guidance on government and university funds so that you receive your full funding entitlement.

Email: study@uel.ac.uk

Phone: 020 8223 4444

Tuition fees
EU
£2,310
price per 30 credit module
Tuition fees are subject to annual change. Fees for future years will be published in due course.

At UEL, we understand that studying in another country is a big financial commitment. If you apply early for an undergraduate, you may be entitled to a scholarship of up to £4,000.You can find out more about the international scholarships here.

The Student Money Advice and Rights Team (SMART) also run an Emergency International Fund to assist international students in hardship.

You can contact our SMART team on 02082234444 or study@uel.ac.uk

Some courses offer the option of a placement year, giving you the chance to gain valuable work experience in a relevant industry between your second and third years. If you are an international student on a Tier 4 visa, you are able to undertake a placement if it is an integral and assessed part of your course.

In 2017/18 placement year tuition fees are set at £1,030.

Deposits and paying by instalments

International students are required to pay a deposit prior to being issued a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS).

Your remaining balance will be paid in five monthly instalments over your first term. The first of these instalments must be paid when completing your enrolment on arrival at UEL. Please follow the payment instructions here

After the required payment has been made, you will be asked to complete the online International Student Reply Form to confirm your acceptance of our offer and of our terms of admittance and fees policy.

As part of the Tier 4 student visa requirements, UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) estimate that you will need £1265* per month to cover your living costs. It includes expenses for accommodation, food and drink, travel within London, text books, entertainment, clothing, toiletries and laundry. Most Tier 4 students are required to show they have sufficient funds to cover the first nine months of the course before they start- a total of £11385- in addition to the tuition fees. You can find more information about the specific requirements of the Tier 4 student visa here. The amount that you will spend can vary depending on your lifestyle. The UKCISA International Student Calculator can help you plan and manage your money.

* Please note the Immigration Rules are subject to change and this figure is likely to be increased by UKVI year on year. Please therefore check our ISA pages (www.uel.ac.uk/isa) for more information at the time of preparing your visa application.

Our International team at UEL are available for advice and guidance on studying in London, fees, scholarships and visa requirements.

Email: international@uel.ac.uk

Tuition fees
International
£11,440
Tuition fees are subject to annual change. Fees for future years will be published in due course.

Entry requirements

112

New UCAS Points

From
A Level
Must include passes at A2 in at least two subjects.
From
Btec
Extended Diploma (QCF) or Diploma (QCF)
From
International Baccalaureate
Diploma with 25 points including a minimum of 15 points at Higher Level.
We would normally expect you to have Grade C in GCSE English and maths (See below for accepted equivalences)

INTERNATIONAL

(Including European Union)

We accept a range of qualifications from across the world. Please see our country pages for information on specific entry requirements for your country.

SEE YOUR COUNTRY

All applicants are required to submit a game design challenge and analysis exercise in support of their application.

Details of the challenge can be found at: http://www.uelgames.org/index.php/courses



Access to HE Diploma (QAA approved) with 60 credits overall and 45 credits at Level 3

Overall IELTS 6.0 with a minimum of 6.0 in Writing and Speaking; minimum 5.5 in Reading and Listening (or recognised equivalent).

Level 2 equivalences such as Level 2 Functional Skills in English / Maths, Level 2 Key Skills in Communication / Application of Number and Level 2 Adult Literacy / Adult Numeracy

As an inclusive university we recognise that applicants who have been out of education for some time may not have the formal qualifications usually required for entry to a course. We welcome applications from those who can demonstrate their enthusiasm and commitment to study and have relevant life/work experience that equips them to succeed on the course. We will assess this from the information provided in your application (particularly your personal statement) and may ask you to attend an interview or submit a piece of work to help us decide on your eligibility for the course. Our pre-entry Information Advice and Guidance Team are able to provide further advice on entry requirements and suitability for study.

You can speak to a member of our Applicant Enquiries team on +44 (0)20 8223 3333, Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm. Alternatively, you can visit our Information, Advice and Guidance centre. Please click here for details.

What you'll learn

Both of our three-year computer games courses share a common core of modules. The Computer Games Design (Story Development) programme differs slightly, though, with its emphasis on the application of traditional story and narrative design to game and gameplay design. The course will allow you to develop creative writing skills and focus on how they relate to game design.

In your first year, you’ll look at the basic theoretical and practical aspects of games design and development. One day, you could be deconstructing Asteroids or Pac-Man; the next, creating your own board game. You’ll be learning about graphics and prototyping production techniques as well as games theory.

In your second year, you’ll concentrate on more detailed games design as well as studying games research methods. You’ll also get the chance to apply your developing knowledge by working for a live client. You’ll gain valuable insights into all aspects of professional practice. It’s not just about designing games but about communicating your ideas properly, so you’ll take part in presentations and pitches.

In your final year, you’ll complete an individual research and dissertation project. Working in a group, you'll also conceptualise, design and develop an original game to give you a proper feel for how the games industry works. At the same time, you’ll be putting the final touches to your final professional portfolio to ensure you are in the best possible position after your graduate.

What you'll study and when

Academic Development (core)
Independent Project (core)
Creative Digital Practice (core)
London and Literature (option)
Reporting London (option)
London and History (option)
Media, Culture and Society (option)
Visual Communication (option)
Digital Content Design (core)
Introduction to Gameplay Development (core)
Games Design (core)
Creative Practice 1 (core)
Professional Practice (core)
Digital Media Research Methods and Concepts (core)
Gameplay Events and Level Design (core)
Story and Myth (core)
Games Studio (core)
Targeted Games Design (core)
Dissertation/Project (core) 
Dynamic Gameplay (core)

How you'll be assessed

Learning takes place through lectures, seminars, practical workshops in specialist labs, screenings, presentations, critiques and invited speakers from industry. Tutorial sessions are a major part of the course, as well as personal one-to-one supervision of final-year projects and dissertations. All assessment is via practical, theoretical and group and individual project coursework.

Foundation Year Specification Course specification

How you'll learn

You’ll have rare insight into the games world thanks to tutors and lecturers who know it inside out. They include Senior Lecturer Richard Leinfellner, the former vice-president of Electronic Arts. A major figure in the business for 30 years, he has unrivalled contacts in the industry.

Our facilities are outstanding, too. We have equipment to study user experiences such as brainwave activity while playing games. We also have specialist, dedicated laboratories such as our Ludology Lab, which is equipped with industry-standard hardware and software. It’s a treasure trove of hundreds of video and board games run by - and beloved by - our students.

In your second year, you’ll work to a games creation brief set by a client. This year we’re involved in a prestigious partnership with Endemol, the global multi-platform entertainment company which has produced worldwide TV hits such as Big Brother and Deal Or No Deal.

The company has given us intellectual property from a number of their TV programmes to turn into games. Over the year, our students will create a game for them while demonstrating that it meets their brief.

We run an exciting programme of guest lectures from industry professionals. A recent speaker was Tim Heaton, the creative director of Creative Assembly, who gave a behind-the-scenes talk about Alien Isolation.

Your future career

We believe our courses are ideal preparation for a career in the games industry - and we can point to a couple of BAFTAs to back it up.

After graduating with a computer games degree here, Ashraf Mohammad started working with Rocksteady as a games tester. He has gone on to work on the Batman series of games and was a member of the team who won the 'Best Gameplay' and 'Best Game' BAFTAs for Batman: Arkam Asylum.

He is just one in a long list of our graduates who have made a real impact in the industry. For instance, in the last five years, two have featured in Develop Magazine’s list of the industry’s top 30 most promising young talents.

One, Richard Hamer, is now a top designer for Sony Entertainment Europe. The other, Ryan Wiltshire, worked for leading companies and has now set up his own studio. Another graduate, Matt Glanville, is a highly respected designer who’s now working for Just Add Water on Oddworld.

Some students go on to work as designers, programmers, testers and producers in a wide range of companies while others have become games design teachers themselves or launched successful careers in other areas of digital media.

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Meet us in your country

Our international team travel overseas regularly to meet prospective students and attend recruitment fairs. Our academics also give regular lectures overseas and are happy to speak to prospective students. In addition, we have a large worldwide network of advisors who can provide guidance and support with applying to study at the University of East London.

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