Computer Games Development

UCAS codes

  • G610 -

Course contact

Dr John Nixon
+44 (0)141 849 4101


  • School of Engineering and Computing

Qualifications and durations

  • BSc - 3 Years
  • BSc Hons - 4 Years
  • BSc (Sandwich) - 4 Years
  • BSc (Hons Sandwich) - 5 Years

The University of West of Scotland's BSc degree in Computer Games Development recognises that the fastest growing sector of the computer games industry is for game-playing on smartphones, tablets, internet sites and social networking spaces and this degree prepares graduates for employment in this rapidly changing environment.

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  • SQA Highers - BBBC plus English and Maths at SQA Standard Grade 3 or above, Intermediate 2 or National 4.
  • GCE A-Levels: CCC, plus 3 GCSEs including English and Mathematics. 
  • HNC - Interactive Media or Computing
  • International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma: 24 points (to include 2 Higher subjects at 4 points). 
  • Irish Leaving Certificate - BBBC at Higher Level (must be C2 or above) plus English and Maths at least at Ordinary Level.
  • HND - Interactive Media or Visual Communication
  • SQA HNC/BTEC Level 4 HNC: Computer Games Development (Grade A). 
  • HND - Computing, Computing: Software Development or Computer Games Development

The computer games marketplace has changed – huge growth in availability, use of personal computing platforms, and consolidation of social networking spaces have had significant impact. Faster and more easily available broadband has enabled gamers to access game technology almost anywhere. 

Games developers for these ‘everywhere and everyone’ markets must be talented, creative and entrepreneurial. The games market demographic is potentially everyone with a smartphone, social networking account or tablet. We see you as a games developer from day one until you graduate and bring your own games onto the market to be played. The course introduces you to the complete product development lifecycle. This is a practitioner’s degree that encourages you to be creative.

Year 1

The games industry, games programming, professional issues in creative industries and Flash and animation for games and other creative industries are explored. At the end of the year you will produce an e-portfolio based showreel featuring your best work to present to employers.

Year 2

You will deepen your understanding of the essential parts of games creation, including games design, website programming, games development for mobile phones, interaction design, games employment and games creation from engines. By the end of Year 2 you will be able to consider setting up your own games studio or taking an industry placement.

Sandwich Placement (Optional)

(Optional) Sandwich Placement You have the option to undertake a placement on a full-time basis over a minimum 36 weeks duration, leading to a sandwich award. This can be taken either between Years 2 and 3 or between Years 3 and 4.

Year 3

You will undertake a year-long team development project to create a working 3D game for release and play by the wider public. All teams will be working on real games, using real games engines with the intention of creating an employment ready show-reel on their e-portfolio. The social implications of video games and advanced web games creation techniques are studied.

Year 4 (Honours)^

You will undertake a work-related project and dissertation, based on a real, work-related issue of use in your games studio development work. In addition, there are a range of modules offered such as learning games, and the direction of the creative industries.
The major games studios all have a growing interest in casual, portable, online and personal gaming platforms. However, they only employ the most talented and business-aware graduates. This is why we emphasise the need, from the start of the course, to work on real-world tasks and to create a strong e-portfolio and show-reel. Strong support is also given for those wishing to run their own games studio. The wide range of skills graduates leave with can be applied to various industries including mobile phone, PC, games, animation or social networking. You will have the option of undertaking a 36 week placement between Years 2 and 3 or Years 3 and 4. At time of print the Honours degree at Paisley and Hamilton campuses is accredited by the British Computer Society as fully meeting the educational requirements for Chartered IT Professional registration. (Ayr students currently attend Paisley in Year 4). Students undertaking this Honours programme will need to complete a year of further learning beyond graduation if they wish to complete Chartered IT Professional registration. Part-time students must gain their award within six years if they wish accreditation.

Useful Information

  • ^At time of print, the Honours year of study is not offered at Ayr Campus. Students wishing to take Honours will spend Year 4 at Paisley Campus. This is currently under review. Contact for further details.