Game design programs again make top 25 in national rankings

Princeton Review also ranks university’s MFA in design program for game design
Game design and development students at UW-Stout work on projects in the Pixel and Vector Art class taught by instructor Karl Koehle. / UW-Stout photo by Brett Roseman
​Jerry Poling | March 28, 2018

For the sixth straight year, the game design and development programs at University of Wisconsin-Stout have been ranked in the top 25 in the country.

Princeton Review, an educational services company known for its annual rankings of universities and academic programs, law schools and business schools, ranked UW-Stout’s program 24th.

In addition, UW-Stout’s Master of Fine Arts in design program was ranked 18th. The program has a concentration in game design.

While the rankings mostly covered U.S. colleges and universities, they also included schools in Canada and abroad.

Diane ChristieUW-Stout again has the only programs — undergraduate or graduate — from Wisconsin, Minnesota or Iowa in the top 25 out of 150 programs reviewed. The No. 1-ranked undergraduate program is University of Southern California.

UW-Stout offers two undergraduate game design programs, a Bachelor of Fine Arts with a focus on art, and a Bachelor of Science with a concentration on the computer science aspects of game design.

“We are very pleased that UW-Stout continues to be recognized nationally, demonstrating the effectiveness of the hands-on nature of our polytechnic institution,” said Professor Diane Christie, director of the computer science-game design program. “Our cross-discipline teams and project-based curriculum are a reflection of how industry operates and prepares our students for their future careers.”

Andrew WilliamsThe past two years, UW-Stout has taken second and first, respectively, for Best Visual Quality in the Intel University Games Showcase national competition in San Francisco. Read about UW-Stout’s 2018 award for Sun of the Children, designed by an MFA student.

Associate Professor Andrew Williams, director of the game design-art program, called the national rankings and placements at competitions a “testament to our highly talented pool of students and faculty. We have helped build a great culture based on teamwork that allows our students to practice highly valued collaborative skills for the digital age."

UW-Stout’s original game design and development program was approved in 2009 by the UW System Board of Regents. The BFA program was approved in December 2014.

Robert Franek, editor in chief of Princeton Review, which is not associated with Princeton University, called game design “an exciting field” and complimented the ranked schools.

“For students aspiring to work in this field, the schools on our list offer extraordinary opportunities to launch a career in this industry,” Franek said. “The top schools have outstanding faculties and great facilities, which will give students the skills and experience they need to pursue a career in this dynamic and burgeoning field.”

Princeton Review’s 40-question survey of the programs gathered data that included the schools' academic offerings, lab facilities and graduates’ starting salaries and career achievements.



Diane Christie

Andrew Williams

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