Degree Requirements

The BS ACS Game Design concentration can be successfully completed within the normal 120 semester hour degree at GMU. In addition to Mason Core requirements including humanities, and social science, the BS ACS Game Design concentration requires foundation, core, and elective courses as described here. Course requirements provide students with expertise in programming, systems, software engineering, formal methods and analysis of algorithms. At least 45 semester hours of the degree requirements must be at the 300 level or above.

Required courses for all ACS concentrations  

ACS Foundation Courses: CS 110, 112, 211; MATH 113, 114, 125, 203.

ACS Core: CS 262, 310, 321, 330, 367, 471, 483.

One CS course numbered above 400.


Computer Game Design Concentration courses

All BS ACS majors must complete at least 36 additional credits to meet the course requirements of Computer Game Design concentration. These credits will include either STAT 344 (Statistics and Probability) or a course in Statistics relevant to Computer Game Design.

Foundation: AVT 104; GAME 230, 306, 325, 351;  STAT 344

Core: CS 425, 426, 451; AVT 382, 383

One approved elective chosen from: CS 332, CS 455, CS 475, CS 480, CS 485, SWE 432, GAME 332, AVT 370, AVT 374, AVT 487

Natural Science: PHYS 160/161 and one additional lab science.


Sample Schedule

One example of how the ACS in Computer Game Design major may be achieved within eight semesters can be found in the brochure.



A Closer Look at Game Design Specific Courses

The following courses have been created specifically for this program and tailor the standard computer science degree for game programming.

CS 325 Computer Game Design
Game design, in various electronic entertainment technologies, involves a diverse set of skills and backgrounds from narrative and art to computer programming. This course surveys the technical aspects of the field, with an emphasis on programming.

CS 351 Visual Computing
The focus of this course is programming essential mathematical and geometric concepts underlying computer graphics. It covers fundamental topics in computational geometry, 3D modeling, graphics algorithms, and graphical user interfaces using both 2D and 3D implementations. Furthermore, it reinforces object oriented programming practices.

CS 425 Game Programming I

An introduction to the technologies and techniques used in modern computer games. Teams will learn the facets of a complete design, using sophisticated tools. The course will involve a project in which a game is prototyped; this prototype and initial design will serve as the starting point for the project in CS426.

CS 426 Game Programming II
This project-oriented course is a continuation of CS 425 with an emphasis on the implementation of a complete game.