Western to offer online programs in video game design, development

CULLOWHEE – Western Carolina University has partnered with Gatlin Educational Services to offer two new online programs in video game design and development.

The programs lay the groundwork for students who wish to learn the high-end techniques and engineering principles behind modern videogame technology. By completing the programs, students will develop skills that are necessary to implement their own game ideas, said Susan Fouts, Western’s director of continuing education.

“According to a recent CBS report on video game development, many believe that video games will be the dominant art form of the century,” Fouts said. “The video game industry last year was worth almost $25 billion.”

The “Video Game Design and Development” program is an appropriate starting point for students who seek a professional career as a game developer, Fouts said. It is also well-suited for enthusiastic amateurs and gamers looking to explore this field as a recreational endeavor, she said. Cost of the 500-hour program is $2,495.

The “3ds Max” program teaches students to used both 3ds Max and Character Studio to design, develop and animate 3-D video game characters. The 650-hour program is offered for $4,095. The program includes an internship opportunity for an additional fee. Internships are either three or six months and are performed remotely from the student’s current location.

Costs of the programs include all materials. Students may apply to the programs at any time. GES is a leading online educational services company, providing popular Web-based workforce programs in partnership with universities nationwide.

For more information or to register, contact Fouts in the Division of Distance and Continuing Education at (828) 227-7397 or toll free at (800) 928-4968, or via e-mail at sfouts@email.wcu.edu. Information also is available online at http://edoutreach.wcu.edu/continuing.