BA (Hons)
Undergraduate - Level 4,5 & 6

Game Development: Programming

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Women game testing on a VR Headset
Group learning
A student sits in common room on laptop

Our industry-focused BA (Hons) Games Development: Programming degree is designed to give you the tools to be able to develop your own games and replicates the professional environment of a game development studio.

Key Information
  • Where can I study?
    Bristol / Manchester
  • Start Date
    September 2024
  • Study Modes
  • Course Length
    3 Years
  • UK/Home Fees (Per Year)
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Key Information
Key Information
Game Development: Programming

Course Overview

If you’re interested in how games are played and programmed, this is the degree course for you. This exciting degree explores the fundamentals of game development and programming, giving you the skills needed to operate as a programmer building advanced games, and becoming an expert in programming and scripting languages.

Starting with the foundations of game development through to building  an advanced game programming skill set, you’ll learn the basic principles, roles, and tools used in the game development pipeline. From there you’ll take your programming abilities to the next level, building games of your own, from scratch.

You’ll develop specialist skills in physical computing, virtual reality and artificial intelligence while becoming proficient in a range of relevant programming and scripting languages such as Python, C++ and C#.

As well as honing your skills, this degree course also looks to the future, where you’ll explore the trajectory of games, and where the industry, and technology is heading; ensuring you graduate armed and ready to adapt and diversify over time to stay relevant.

This course is taught by the dBs Institute and awarded by Access Creative College

If you’re based in or hoping to study in London, this course is available to study with Access Creative London.

This course is taught by the dBs Institute and awarded by Falmouth University

Course Details

You will study a total of 16 modules, including a final major project. Programme structures and modules can change as part of our curriculum enhancement and review processes.

Close up shot of a student playing a computer game

Year Overview

Year 1

Module Breakdown

In year one of your Game Development: Programming degree, you'll learn what it takes to make a game, including asset creation, project management and pipelines, pitching ideas, and considering theories about what games are and how they engage players. You'll jump into the world of computing, get comfortable using digital tools such as Unity and Unreal and get to grips with the foundations of game development by learning the basic principles, roles, and tools used in the game development pipeline.

Year 2

In the second year you will advance your programming skills and experience through a combination of solo and collaborative projects. You'll be tasked with creating a whole game world for production, exploring the relationships between games and players, and be encouraged to work collaboratively with other students from across the institution taking your skills across disciplines to produce a cross-discipline project that utilises skills and disciplines across Game Art and Game Programming.

Year 3

Equipped with a greater sense of autonomy, you will use your third year as an opportunity to develop greater intellectual freedom, both as an individual but also in tackling a challenge in collaboration with others. You'll prepare yourself for the job market by building a professional game portfolio, as well as developing your commercial awareness and entrepreneurial mindset; be that setting up your own business, establishing yourself as a freelancer or being an employee with high utility within a business or organisation.

How You'll Learn

You'll create original games through group work, professional practice and Game Jams. You'll also develop practical skills through practice-based workshops, and learn to evaluate and improve your work through group tutorials, and individual tutorials. Regular learning will come from lectures, seminars and our Virtual Learning Environment.

  • Industry masterclasses and guest lecturers
  • Access to game development studio spaces and bookable equipment
  • Use of library resources and study spaces
  • Access to supporting online resources including videos, reading and interactive activities

Assessments are 100% coursework, submitted in an electronic format to our virtual learning environment, and designed to reflect professional practice. This includes (but is not limited to):

  • Collaborative Studio Practice
  • Computer-based Artefacts and Worksheet Tasks
  • Poster Demonstrations and other Presentations
  • Critical Evaluations and Continuing Personal Development
  • Papers and a Professional Portfolio

On average you should allow for between 40 - 50 hours per week for your studies of which approximately 25% will be taught (c.10 hours) and 75% will be self-study.

Why Choose dBs

Here at dBs Institute, we pride ourselves on creating a learning environment that reflects the industry that you want to work in. Our state-of-the-art facilities ensure that you are working on professional-grade equipment; our course leaders have years of industry experience to draw from and we foster a community of students and staff that inspires and encourages collaboration. Throughout your studies and beyond, we will also provide you with career support and guidance to reach your future goals.


Inside our high-spec game suite
Inside our high-spec game suite
Developing projects in the game suite
Developing projects in the game suite
Our mo-cap suit in action
Our mo-cap suit in action

    Why Choose a Online
    Degree at dBs

    Our online master's degrees offers a high-quality, immersive, and community-driven learning experience, led by industry experts who are passionate about their craft. With 24/7 access to course materials and resources, you can learn at your own pace from anywhere in the world. Plus, our hands-on projects will equip you with practical skills necessary for a successful career in the music industry.
    A female student works on her laptop

    Flexible study

    Enjoy the freedom to fit your learning around you. For online students, course content – other than one-to-one sessions – will be available to access whenever suits you. Video materials that have been created for online students will also be made available to students that select to study on-site.

    dBs Online tutor kris burton sits in front of our API desk at dBs

    Learn from the pros

    You will learn from tutors whose expertise extends across production, composition, sound design, sound engineering, label management, marketing and promotion.

    You’ll also have access to our extensive guest lecture programme, giving you the chance to meet leading industry professionals – ranging from respected producers and performers to specialist technical staff from world-class audio companies.

    Student working on a project at dBs Pro

    Industry Connections

    As a student of this course, you will be encouraged to apply for placements and opportunities with dBs Pro, our in-house creative audio company.
    This will allow you to further your experience and apply the skills you have been honing, as well as showcase your skills to clients and develop your creative own links in the industry.

    What our students say

    Who better to tell you about our course than students already doing the course? In this video, some of our latest cohort talk about their experience of the dBs online masters degrees.

    What our students say

    Learn what makes dBs Institute so special from the people who matter most - our students!


    Engaging with our industry

    In our 20+ year history, we’ve built a strong network of contacts across the creative industries, that include AMS Neve, Solid State Logic, Avid and many more.

    Career support

    We strive to equip our students with the skills and opportunities to secure roles across the creative industries, and this goal underpins the student experience at dBs Institute.

    dBs Pro

    dBs Pro is a creative audio company with a difference - it’s dedicated to providing our students with real-world experience alongside their studies.

    Your Future Prospects

    Students studying on this course will have extensive experience working with a variety of coding languages in an array of environments. Much like a game artist, programming for games contains a wealth of roles within it, including level designer, AI programmer and software engineer.

    We go into greater detail about these roles in our career spotlight and signpost the skills, experience and pathways that will help you work in them:

    How to Apply

    Applying for this course is easy! Simply click the "Apply" button below to submit your application directly through our website.
    A member of our Admissions Team will then be in touch to discuss your suitability for the course, your interests and to arrange an interview.

    Applications for undergraduate degrees are made through the University and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). You can apply online through the UCAS website.

    Please note that the UCAS 'on-time' application deadline for equal consideration is 31st January 2024.

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    If you would like to make an application for this course, fill in your details below and a member of our admissions team will be in touch to advise you through the application process.

    For detailed information on how to apply please take a look at our guide to making an application.

    Further Study

    Register your interest

    If you’d like to find out more about our postgraduate courses, please fill in the form below. Once submitted, a member of our admissions team will be in touch to discuss our postgraduate course offerings and the next steps of the application process.

    Please note, if you currently live outside of the UK and require a Tier 4 VISA to study in the United Kingdom, we are unable to accept your application for our on campus full-time or part-time postgraduate degree programmes. If this is the case, please apply for one of our online postgraduate courses instead.