Studying Games Development

The LA Times is running an article about studying computer/video games development at university-level. It is certainly impressive to see how many institutions are taking up this area, but in line with the quote from an EA employee, as well as many users on Slashdot, I am dubious about the wisdom of quite such enthusiastic uptake.

As was the case with many folks on the Computer Games Technology degree I studied, it seems that too many of the wrong kinds of folks are being attracted to the courses: people who like playing games (which admittedly is an important attribute), but are either unable to develop the necessary skills, or simply can’t be bothered doing the work. In part, I think the problem is people who come straight from high school into university — they are used to being spoon-fed all their education, and have never experienced a significant workload. University and the real-world are full-time endeavours, children… get used to it!

I am certainly all in favour of Higher Education, but only where appropriate. Students undertaking a course where they are likely to fail or drop-out is waste of time, effort, and money for all concerned. Furthermore, unless they manage to change to a different (more suitable) degree, it gives them a pretty bad start for any kind of career.

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