Bachelor of Science in Games Development

  • NFQ Level 7
  • Points Required 271*
  • Course Code SG131
  • Award Ordinary Bachelor Degree Abinitio
  • Duration 3

Course Summary


Games development is now a massive multi-million Euro global industry. Xbox, PlayStation and Smartphone Apps are some examples but there are countless other businesses working on games and applications development.

PROGRAMME OVERVIEW

This course uses a software engineering approach to games development, combining study of the technical aspects of games programming, including virtual reality, augmented reality and artificial intelligence, with the principles of project management, quality assurance and organisational management. 

While focused on developing games software, we also provide a general grounding in software engineering to equip students with the breadth of skills to work in any aspect of the information technology industry. Cutting edge games development computer laboratory and peripheral hardware are just some of the features on the programme that will allow students to flex their creativity and gain first-hand experience. 

YEAR ONE

A common first year across computing programmes allows students and lecturers alike to establish where each student’s strengths lie. Games development students diverge from the common year to get access to the Introduction to Games Programming module, designed specifically to prepare them for future games programming subjects.

YEAR TWO

There are modules in both 2D and 3D Games Programming, Object Oriented Programming and Game Content Design. Students will be introduced to Database Technology, Data Structures and Algorithms.

YEAR THREE

In Year Three students will have the space and support to work in a team, to design and develop an original gaming experience, while exploring emerging technologies such as augmented and virtual reality. The emphasis is on preparing the student for the workplace through work placement. Our network of employers welcomes this course and a successful work placement is often the door to a full-time job.

NEW GAMING HUB IN SLIGO

Work commenced in October 2021 on a new innovative gaming hub in Sligo. The €1.9m development will provide a flexible workspace for companies working in the digital gaming sector. The hub will help entrepreneurs start and scale innovative gaming businesses and further enhance the northwest’s reputation for tech.

It will be constructed next to the existing Strand Campus Enterprise Hub, which serves tech and digital companies with meeting spaces, mail drop and hot-desking facilities. The hub is expected to have capacity for 20 different companies and support a further 40 companies through the establishment of a digital games cluster in the northwest.

There are several distinct features to this programme:

Common first year - Many are unsure of computing. While we have an array of programmes, we recognise that you may wish to ‘sample and see’ so we encourage students to look their choice afresh at end of year one.

Significant practical elements - We believe you learn best by doing and our programme is built upon hands on lab work.

Equipment - We have invested heavily in equipment, computer labs and workspaces to ensure you have the best tools to learn and prepare you for the workplace.

Project - Substantial projects enable you to really grapple with a problem and create a killer solution. In Year Three you’ll have the space and support to work in a team year-long towards a solution that will wow employers.

Work placement - We have been offering placement longer than most and we’re good at it. Our network of employers welcome this programme and a successful work placement is often the door to a full-time job.

Entry Requirements

Entry requirements for CAO courses at ATU Sligo are available for download below:

Career Opportunities

Our Games Development graduates are prepared for a number of roles within the current development landscape in Ireland and internationally.

These roles include gameplay developers, level designers, game designers and tool developers. While focused on developing games software, we also provide a general grounding in software engineering to equip students with the breadth of skills to work in any aspect of the information technology industry.

The digital gaming sector employs around 2,000 people in Ireland. The overall industry worldwide is worth an estimated $300bn. It is an area of huge potential growth in Ireland. A new €1.9m innovative gaming hub in Sligo will provide a flexible workspace for companies working in the digital gaming sector. The hub will help entrepreneurs start and scale innovative gaming businesses and further enhance the northwest’s reputation for tech.

A degree in computing offers countless employment opportunities both in Ireland and abroad. Recent government reports have highlighted a skills shortage in computing. This has resulted in an increase in graduate wages. The average graduate wage is now over €30k whilst some of our recent graduates have commanded wages of almost €45k.

Matthew McMeekin graduated from our Department of Computing in 2019. Matthew now works for Amazon. "I met with Amazon at the College Careers Fair. Shortly after this, I completed my application and received a job offer before I had finished my studies. My starting salary was €44,600." 

Further Study

Graduates of the BSc in Games Development may progress to the BSc (Hons) in Software Development add-on year.

BSc (Hons) in Software Development add-on

Upon completion of the Level 8 honours degree, graduates are well placed for Masters studies in areas such as the MSc in Computing (Data Science) at ATU Sligo.

MSc in Computing (Data Science)

Testimonials

Hear what graduates and employers have to say about computing at ATU Sligo.

Did you know?

The digital gaming sector employs around 2,000 people in Ireland. The overall industry worldwide is worth an estimated $300bn. It is an area of huge potential growth in Ireland. A new €1.9m innovative gaming hub in Sligo will provide a flexible workspace for companies working in the digital gaming sector. The hub will help entrepreneurs start and scale innovative gaming businesses and further enhance the northwest’s reputation for tech.

Student projects are presented at The Sligo Engineering & Technology Expo. The Expo is attended by a range of companies including Fortune 500 industry leaders. This allows students to network with potential employers. In 2021, student projects included a variety of video games and innovative apps. View the 2021 Expo Catalogue

We also focus on developing students’ soft skills such as teamwork and communication. These skills are increasingly important to employers.

In Year Three students will have the space and support to work in a team, to design and develop an original gaming experience, while exploring emerging technologies such as augmented and virtual reality. 

Students will undertake a work placement in third year. Over 70% of our students gain employment directly from their work placement.

All our Computing degrees have a common first year. Students study a wide range of computing modules to give them an understanding of all aspects of computing and the flexibility to change direction in year two if desired. Students can choose from ComputingNetworks and Cyber SecuritySoftware Development or Games Development