Graduate Certificate in Game Design and Development

Graduate Certificate in Game Design and Development (GDD)


The purpose of the GDD certificate is to provide graduate students with the opportunity to reach a demonstrated level of competence in game design and development. Course-work towards the certificate in GDD can be used towards the Master’s degree in Computer Science. However, its primary purpose is to provide a well-defined target for students who want to advance their knowledge of modern game design and development techniques and work with a variety of professionals, from artists to writers, to bring the vision for an interactive game or media product to life. The certificate may be pursued concurrently with any of the graduate degree programs at UNC Charlotte.

Admission Requirements

The certificate in GDD is open to all students who hold a Bachelor’s degree in any scientific, engineering or business and either
Are enrolled and in good standing in a graduate degree program at UNC Charlotte or
have GPA above 2.8 overall and 3.0 Jr/Sr.
In addition, the program expects a current working knowledge of two higher level languages, including at least one procedural language, and a familiarity with computer applications. The following minimal background in mathematics is compulsory: two semesters of calculus and one semester of discrete structures. Individuals who have worked at a high professional level in the computer industry may be able to substitute work experience for specific subject area admission requirements. Application for the GDD certificate program is made through the Graduate Admissions Office of the University.

Completion Requirements

The certificate will be awarded upon completion of five graduate level courses (15 credits) in the area of game design and development. The cumulative GPA must be at least 3.0 and at most one course with a grade of C may be allowed toward the certificate. Course substitutions may be made at the discretion of the GDD Certificate Coordinators.

To obtain the certificate a student needs to take the following compulsory courses:

  1. ITCS 5230 Introduction to Game Design and Development
  2. ITCS 5231 Advanced Game Design and Development
  3. ITCS 5232 Game Design and Development Studio
  4. ITCS 5120/6120 Computer Graphics

Take one elective course from the following:

  1. ITCS 5235 Game Engine Construction
  2. ITCS 5236 Artificial Intelligence for Computer Games
  3. ITCS 5237 Audio Processing for Entertainment
  4. Another game-related course (generally from ITCS/ITIS at the 5000 level or above) approved by the GDD coordinators.

Courses used to satisfy requirements of a previous degree are not acceptable. Students with significant game-related work at the undergraduate level may be allowed to substitute advanced game courses for compulsory courses at the discretion of the GDD certificate coordinators.

How to apply:

Go to the Graduate Admissions website and select Apply Now. On the application, indicate that you are applying for the Graduate Game Design and Development Certificate.

Questions?:  Feel free to contact us with your questions!

Dr. Julio Bahamon (Graduate GDD Director)
Mr. Danny Jugan (Undergraduate GDD Director)

alumni scholarship fund

The Alumni Gives Scholarship allows students to pursue their dreams and contribute to the technology community.  This needs-based scholarship empowers students to overcome financial hurdles while pursuing their education goals and gives preference to underrepresented populations within the CCI student body. 

Give to alumni Crowdfund