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MA Independent Games and Playable Experience Design*

  • Length
    1 Year Full Time
  • Department
    Computing

Course overview

This unique course offers critically-engaging themes and technologies, providing skills in immersive storytelling to reflect rapid changes in the games industry.

Whether you are looking to build retail or museum installations or you want to use games to tell cinematic stories, this program explores how to craft deeply compelling, critical games and interactive work both for clients and creative practice.

The MA in Independent Games and Playable Experience Design focuses on developing aesthetic awareness, creating compelling mechanics and the ability to craft innovative narratives in games and immersive experiences. Students will be given the skills needed to run a small business and produce quality design on a highly professional level.

Visiting guest lecturers, researchers and artists from around the world will stimulate your critical thinking while inspiring your creativity. Skills based workshops in the latest fabrication and production methodologies will empower you to build stunning installations.


This program will provide access to education and skills new creators will need to be successful in the marketplace.

Why this course?

As technologies have integrated into our everyday lives, elements from games have been woven into everything from the way museums educate the public to how scientists do cancer research. With the rise of mobile, console creators no longer hold a monopoly on gaming platforms. This new found freedom has resulted in an explosion of independent games creating new genres of play. From putting players in immersive augmented worlds to telling transformational personal narratives, these new experiences are redefining the rules of play. Games are now just part of everyday life. As a result, markets that were dominated by traditional media have begun to leverage the ability of games to tell stories, share the news, generate knowledge and educate the public. An explosion of games and apps has created a new breed of entrepreneur which uses small teams to create projects that are accessible to millions. This rising market has become a driving economic reality within the UK.

Contact the department

If you have specific questions about the degree, contact Phoenix Perry or Prof Robert Zimmer

Modules & structure

Core modules

Module title Credits
  Approaches to Play: Mechanics Dynamic, Aesthetics 30 credits
  Workshops in Creative Coding 1 15 credits
  Workshops in Creative Coding 2 15 credits
  Programming for Artists 1 15 credits
  Programming for Artists 2 15 credits

Option modules

Module title Credits
  Physical Computing 15 credits
  Entrepreneurial Modelling 30 credits
  Pervasive Gaming and Immersive Theatre 15 credits

Please note that due to staff research commitments not all of these modules may be available every year.

Department

Computing at Goldsmiths is ranked: 3rd in London* 17th in the UK for the quality of our research** and in the world's elite***

Computing

The Department of Computing offers a creative, contemporary and pioneering approach to the discipline.

From developing computers that can compose music and paint pictures, to defining and implementing new social media tools and applications, we aim to invigorate computing and the world around it. 

Learn by doing

We place a great emphasis on creativity, independence and ‘learning by doing’. Students undertake practical work in real-world situations, carrying out projects in ways that mirror industry practice. 

Interdisciplinary approach

We also promote an interdisciplinary approach to the subject: from computational arts to games and entertainment, and from data science to digital journalism. 

Industry experts

You’ll be taught by industry experts – our academics are deeply engaged in current research, with many applying their knowledge and skills to developing cutting-edge technology. And we have close links with industry, too, regularly inviting leading professionals to deliver lectures and talks. 

Find out more about the Department of Computing.

*Guardian University League Tables 2017
**Research Excellence Framework 2014, Times Higher Education research intensity subject rankings
***QS World University Rankings by Subject 2017

Entry requirements

You should have an undergraduate degree of at least upper second class standard with an interest in and capability for working in interdisciplinary contexts using technology. In exceptional circumstances, outstanding practitioners or individuals with strong commercial experience may be considered. 

Equivalent qualifications
We accept a wide range of international qualifications. Find out more about the qualifications we accept from around the world.

English language requirements
If English isn’t your first language, you’ll need to meet our English language requirements to study with us.

For this programme we require:

IELTS 6.5 with a 6.5 in writing

If you need assistance with your English language, we offer a range of courses that can help prepare you for postgraduate-level study.

How to apply

You apply directly to Goldsmiths using our online application system.

Before submitting your application you’ll need to have:

  • Details of your education history, including the dates of all exams/assessments
  • The email address of your referee who we can request a reference from, or alternatively an electronic copy of your academic reference
  • A personal statement – this can either be uploaded as a Word Document or PDF, or completed online

Please see our guidance on writing a postgraduate statement

  • If available, an electronic copy of your educational transcript (this is particularly important if you have studied outside of the UK, but isn’t mandatory)

You'll be able to save your progress at any point and return to your application by logging in using your username/email and password.

When to apply

We accept applications from October for students wanting to start the following September.

We encourage you to complete your application as early as possible, even if you haven't finished your current programme of study. It's very common to be offered a place that is conditional on you achieving a particular qualification.

Late applications will only be considered if there are spaces available.

If you're applying for funding, you may be subject to an earlier application deadline.

Selection process

Admission to many programmes is by interview, unless you live outside the UK. Occasionally, we'll make candidates an offer of a place on the basis of their application and qualifications alone.

Find out more about applying.

Fees, funding & scholarships

Find out more about tuition fees.

Find out more about funding opportunities for home/EU applicants, or funding for international applicants. If you're applying for funding, you may be subject to an application deadline.

Disclaimer

*New programme: Subject to validation
Please note: 'subject to validation' means that we will be offering this degree providing it is approved by the Goldsmiths Academic Board.

The approval process involves the specification of this programme being peer reviewed on 5 July 2017. Final approval will be granted at this stage or shortly afterwards following any clarification and amendments. If there is a change to this timeline this page will be updated.

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