two men and one woman around two monitors

Game Development Online Bachelor’s Degree Program

can be completed in as little as

14 terms*

*2 terms per semester; each term is 7 weeks



$1,005 3-credit course

Active Duty Military

truED Preferred Tuition

Credit Hours Required

Summer Term B Application Deadline

June 20

Upcoming Start Dates

Summer B: July 1

Explore Game Development

The online bachelor's degree in Game Development is a comprehensive program designed to empower students with the expertise and abilities needed to excel in the dynamic and competitive realm of computer game development. This program prepares students to meet the demands of today's digital entertainment and interactive markets, offering a strong foundation in game development principles and methodologies. 

Students will develop a deeper understanding of the game development industry, including the ideation and conception of game ideas, software programming and technical design, efficient project management, the intricate world of Artificial Intelligence, and Human-Computer Interaction.


Build Your Career Future 

Having a degree can increase both your immediate job prospects and your long-term career potential. Graduates of this online Game Development program are equipped with the skills and knowledge necessary to conceptualize and develop games in a wide variety of industries such as marketing and advertising, business, and education, in addition to traditional computer gaming.

Take the next step

Academic Excellence and Recognition

New England Commission of Higher Education Logo

Regionally accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education

US News & World Report Best Online Bachelor's Degree Programs

Ranked among the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs by U.S. News & World Report

Military Friendly Badge

Designated as a Military Friendly School for our commitment to the military community ranks Champlain College Online among best schools with accelerated bachelor's degrees

Named the among the best schools with accelerated bachelor's degrees by

What Can I Do With A Degree In Game Development

Game developers occupy pivotal roles within multifaceted creative and technical teams. Salaries in the tech industry in the United States are rising, with robust demand for highly skilled tech professionals driving these increases. According to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), this demand remains strong, emphasizing the favorable job market for tech specialists. 

Looking ahead, experts anticipate a continued surge in growth for the video game industry. In 2020, global market analysts valued the video game market at a substantial $167.5 billion. Projections indicate that by 2027, this value is poised to increase significantly, nearing $291.2 billion.

Possible Career Paths Include

  • Game Developer
  • Game Programmer
  • Computer Programmer
  • Software Developer
  • Mobile Game Developer
Online web programming student looking at tablet

Program Details

Champlain's online business management courses encompass the top skills needed by today's business professionals. Graduates of the program are required to complete the following courses.

Game Development Courses (27 credits) 

Design and Programming Foundations Courses (21 credits) 

Project Management Courses (6 credits) 

Technical Electives (9 credits)

General Electives (15 credits)

General Education Courses (42 credits) 

Game Development Courses

Computer game development is a broad industry involving the coordination of multiple digital technologies and creative design elements. In this course, students explore various computer game genres, the history, philosophy, and ethics of computer games, and methodologies for documenting and directing the game development process. Additionally, students examine the nature of play and engagement in the digital realm, as well as the application of diverse viewpoints in considering the intended game audience and the narrative construction of the games themselves.

Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) is an essential study of how people use computers and digital devices. In this course, students study the concepts of user experience, interface design and usability, and device response and feedback. Students understand the fundamental principles of developing interactive computer systems for desktop, console, and handheld applications. Students will be guided in the application of HCI design principles to computer game development, considering technologies such as virtual and augmented reality, handheld devices, and haptic feedback.


MKCM 102: Foundations of Visual and Digital Design

Creating computer games requires the ability to think logically and conditionally. In this course, students leverage their programming skills to write and understand pseudocode as a tool for outlining programs. Students write sample game outlines that consider player decisions, action choices, and the resulting narrative branches that unfold within the game. By the end of this course, students will be able to make use of branching scenarios, conditional decision making, and other programming concepts applied specifically to game development.


CMIT 135: Introduction to Python

Computer games have evolved dramatically since the text adventure games of the 1970s. In this course, students will survey changes in game technology and the development process from the independent game designer model to the current collaborative approach linking diverse remote teams through modern collaborative software systems. Students create compelling narratives while considering the psychology of play. By the end of the course, students will have experience with level development and the utilization of objects, locations, and NPCs.


GMDV 110: Introduction to Game Development

Computer games require the application and manipulation of audio, graphic, and animated elements. In this course, students use their programming knowledge and skills to reproduce physics behaviors within game environments. Students consider the requirement limitations necessitated by mobile screen size constraints and how interface variations can improve the player's experience. By the end of the course, students will develop more complex games through collaborative teamwork and the integration of various media elements.


SDEV 240: C++ Programming I and GMDV 230: Essentials of Game Programming

Artificial Intelligence is one of the most important factors that influences engagement in a computer game. In this course, students learn modern techniques for implementing AI behaviors in computer games as opponent play, non-player characters, and environmental control agents. Students explore how realistic behaviors are developed algorithmically, implementing procedural content generation. Many mobile apps utilize AI for engagement in single-player games, and by the end of this course, students will be proficient in crafting code to drive challenging opponent behavior.


GMDV 330: Game Development Techniques

Advanced game development involves the creation of game worlds and the integration of multimedia elements in Unity, resulting in a small-scale playtest-ready program. In this course, students collaborate in expanding game code frameworks, level designs, AI behaviors, and interface designs prototyped in previous courses. Advanced techniques in optimization, diagnosis of gameplay bugs, performance benchmarking, and best practices in team management will be covered. By the end of this course, the student will have a codebase ready for the Capstone project.


GMDV 330: Game Development Techniques

Mobile devices represent a rapidly expanding platform and market for computer games. In this course, students develop game mechanics, sound and visual effects, scalable graphics, and narrative frameworks for mobile devices. Students will leverage asset libraries to populate their games and develop multimedia appealing game experiences based on development and prototyping work completed during courses taken previously in the program. By the end of this course, students will have a completed mobile game framework to use in their Capstone course.


SDEV 340: C++ Programming II and GMDV 330: Game Development Techniques

The final experience in the Game Development program is to assemble a functional desktop or mobile mini game. In this course, students refine and assemble components of code and frameworks developed in the previous program courses. Students will also make use of provided audio, graphic, and animated assets for greater multimedia appeal and polish. Students may choose to work in small teams on more comprehensive projects. The outcome of this course will be a playable computer game.


All program courses.

From day one, students in this course are problem solving, first in terms of algorithmic design and then as early as week two via programming in the latest version of Python, using PyCharm. Students begin by writing a program to have a conversation, having strings and numbers as input, and advance, by week seven, to building a working password saver program, capable of looking up, adding (and encrypting), and storing passwords.

Learn the basics and more in this course on Relational Database Management Systems (RDBMS) and SQL (Structured Query Language). Students propose a final project in the first module and then work, week-by-week, to design, create, and populate the database. Then, students learn to create queries and stored procedures.



Python is a programming language with broad appeal because of its accessibility, community, sponsorship and utility. In this course students learn additional Python programming concepts and further develop their skills. Students progress from lists and basic structures to Object Oriented Programming, including objects, classes, encapsulation, abstraction modularity, memory management, inheritance and polymorphism. Students also learn advanced Python language features such as iterators and generators, along with error and exception handling.


Complete CMIT-135

This course introduces students to the fundamental language of visual form and basic skills including the industry-standard software applications used to create, acquire, and manipulate digital images. Students will learn about two-dimensional composition and design, color theory and terminology, and will apply these principles to a variety of basic design projects. Color, form and content will be explored in terms of cultural, psychological, physiological, and historical aspects.

This course covers the fundamentals of systems analysis while emphasizing the role of communication and other soft skills needed in IT and in business overall to be successful. The topics are useful for anyone who is involved in developing software system requirements and architectures (e.g., users, technical managers, product managers, technical leads, programmers, other software project team members, and clients).


CMIT-135, CMIT-200, MGMT-260

This course will introduce students to programming concepts, using a major industry programming language, C++. SDEV-240 covers the history of programming languages, the essentials of the C++ programming language, and how to write effective and efficient programs to solve a variety of real-world problems.



The focus of this course is to cover the robust and powerful features of C++ and Object Oriented Programming. These skills will serve as a foundation to transit to develop Client/Server, Database driven applications and simulations.



Project Management is the formal application of knowledge, skills, tools, and techniques to project-based activities to meet organizational requirements. Project management is accomplished through the use of processes such as Initiating, Planning, Executing, Monitoring and Controlling, and Closing. Project managers can divide projects into these phases to provide better management control with appropriate links to the ongoing operations of the organization. Collectively, these phases, known as the project life cycle, form the foundation for the practice of project management and are guided by the Body of Knowledge from the Project Management Institute (PMI).

The traditional practice of project management is based on the notion that the customer can understand and articulate his or her requirements fully and up front. Unfortunately, this is rarely the case and often customers either don't understand precisely what they need or, more often, will know it when they see it. This is where Agile Project Management comes in. Whether you are managing a project, are on the forefront of a new business venture, or are developing new business processes, Agile Project Management can help managers meet their goals without compromising business value or quality. This course will provide a foundation in Agile and build competencies in Agile Project Management through simulation, case study analysis, and software. Students will receive hands-on experience with agile and scrum processes in a class project. Students will also investigate Agile value principles, release planning, portfolio governance, and the Scrum methodology.


Complete MGMT-260 OR MGMT-262

Complete the following two courses

This course introduces students to the foundational concepts needed to communicate effectively in writing for academic study and professional development. Students will also learn to read critically to evaluate an author's message. Students will be introduced to rhetorical modes and their role in the development of written communication. Students will also learn how to use revision strategies to create written communication that meets its intended purpose for its intended audience

This course builds on students' proficiency in the writing process and rhetorical modes to introduce the use of sources in written communication. Students will practice information literacy as they learn to determine information needs from sources, develop effective search strategies, and incorporate sources in written communication, legally and ethically.


Complete ENGL-100

Complete the following course

This course draws on fundamental concepts of contemporary communication research to help students identify and develop strategies to become effective and versatile communicators across media and settings. Students will examine and respond to a range of interpersonal situations through the critical evaluation of the three essential components of all communication: its purpose, audience, and context. Students will leave the course with the ability to reflect on and adapt their strategies to successfully and consistently communicate for a range of purposes across diverse settings.

Complete the following course

This course draws on fundamental concepts of contemporary group communication research to help students identify and develop strategies to communicate effectively in small groups and teams for the cooperative purpose of advancing common goals. Students will draw on listening and responding strategies learned in COMM-130 Interpersonal Communication and apply them to communicating as a leader or member of a small group. They will also learn how to recognize and manage the types of conflicts that can arise in small groups. Prerequisite: COMM-130 Interpersonal Communication


Complete COMM-130

Complete the following course

Students will learn and apply critical inquiry skills to analyze persuasive communication created by others and to develop persuasive communication/arguments of their own to solve problems in professional, civic, social, and personal contexts. Specifically, students will learn to recognize fallacies in logic; apply inductive and deductive reasoning strategies to the interpretation and development of persuasive communication; evaluate the validity of sources; and develop logically sound persuasive communication. Students will explore the roles of self-awareness, empathy, and ethics in the context of critical inquiry and the development of arguments.


Complete ENGL-110.

Complete one of the following courses, unless your program requires a specific course

This course is an historical overview, and examination of the evolution of digital, film, and print media, and their functions. Students will identify and analyze contemporary problems of the media such as the legal, social, economic and psychological implications of their relationships with society. They also will examine the ways in which marketing and PR professionals utilize the mass media channels to reach their intended target audiences.

This course explores the complex and evolving relationship between human beings and technology. Through a multi-disciplinary approach that draws on fields such as sociology, psychology, philosophy, and history, students will examine the ways in which technology has shaped human culture, identity, and values, as well as how humans have influenced and continue to influence the development, adoption and use of technology.

Complete the following two courses

Mathematical reasoning, when applied to everyday and professional lives, has two dimensions: logic for deterministic situations and probabilities for non-deterministic situations. This course aims to help students develop these mathematical reasoning skills.

Accurate and appropriate visual data representation is increasingly critical in today's work environments. Students will develop skills in data organization, manipulation and interpretation in a way that supports data-driven decision-making and effective communication of numerical data

Complete the following course

In this course, students will gain an introduction to classical mechanics and learn about motion, force, energy, and momentum. The course covers vectors, scalars, and coordinate systems, as well as kinematics in one and two dimensions, Newton's Laws of Motion, circular motion, and kinetic energy and work. Students also learn about potential energy and energy conservation, collision theory, rotational motion, moment of inertia, torque, rotational dynamics, and angular momentum.

Complete the following course

This course will introduce students to major streams of social justice thought, including historical social justice movements, theoretical problems having to do with social equality, personal freedom, marginalization, and stigmatization, and the ways in which civic and professional communities respond to these issues.

Complete MATH 190 and any one of the other following courses, unless your program requires a specific course(s)

With pressure and release, a window opens and closes, recording light on a sensor. The simple action captures the instinct, judgement, and skill of the person behind the lens. This class will begin a study of the art and craft of photography. Students will develop their vision and their understanding of how to achieve it. Solid skills will be learned and many doors will be opened.

A survey of the continuing change experienced in art since the 15th century. Students will examine how an image is achieved as well as the significance of the subject represented. Individual inquiry concerning the nature of art is encouraged.

Students learn to appreciate films through the critical analysis of various elements of mise-en-scene, cinematography, editing and sound. The course introduces the conventions of classical Hollywood cinema, considers the work of one major director (auteur), and surveys selected international and independent films. Students view and discuss films each week.

Students in the course will explore the cultural history of the music genre broadly referred to as rock. Students will explore the social, economic and political contexts that are influenced by and that influenced each style in the United States. By listening, watching, reflecting upon, discussing and writing, students will explore how music takes on meaning, personally, and culturally. Topics and themes include the relationships between and among gospel, country, funk, folk, disco, rap and hip hop; the role of business and technology in those relationships, and political or transgressive elements of rock music.

Students will apply communication theory and research to address the particular challenges to communicating effectively in organizations. Students will learn how to identify organizational communication problems, analyze those problems, and generate effective solutions. Students will examine the relationship between organizational structure and specific communicative practices, and how communication practices by organizational members establish, maintain, or change organizational culture. They will also learn how to anticipate communication deficiencies in organizations, and use communication as a means to facilitate organizational development and innovation.


Complete COMM-130

Specific application of common tools for writing in the working world. Students will be instructed in rhetorical strategies of professional writing including style, report formats, editing, document design, and integration of visual aids. Students will complete a semester-long writing project; oral and written reports associated with the process of problem-solving within the project will be included.


ENGL-112 or COR-125

Students will learn how to create conditions for successful conflict engagement, a necessary skill for any professional. The course focuses on the foundational capacities to remain calm and connected with oneself and others. In this state students can access helpful ideas and responses and be their best selves regardless of environment. Improving facility for conflict creates stronger relationships and reduces fear. By the end of the course, students will understand that disagreement and difference can become a source of personal and interpersonal growth.

Ethics refers to accepted standards of right and wrong that prescribe what humans ought to do in various contexts, typically in relation to rights, obligations/duties, benefits to society, fairness, consequences, and virtues. In this course, students will explore both theoretical and practical dimensions of ethics in order to 1) define ethics and identify ethical positions and principles, 2) critically reflect on how ethics impacts individual and collective responsibility, decision-making, and action, and 3) apply ethics to the personal, civic, and professional contexts.



This course introduces students to the fundamental elements of technical writing (clear, concise, and targeted)that are common among seven forms of technical communication: email correspondence, editing,employment communication, proposals, long, formal reports,oral communication, and inventions. Through peer reviews and writing workshops, students develop the ability to write and edit text that precisely targets its audience. This course emphasizes deepening and broadening students' writing, speaking, and thinking abilities in a non-lecture-based, hands-on, discussion-centered classroom.


ENGL-112 or COR-125

This course covers the fundamental concepts of linear algebra and analytical geometry, including matrices, vectors, linear transformations, and systems of linear equations. Students will also explore the analytical geometry of Euclidean spaces, including lines, planes, circles, spheres, and conic sections. In this course, students will develop their mathematical reasoning skills and learn how to apply these principles to solve real-world problems.

Complete any two of the following courses, unless your program requires a specific course(s)

Provides a comprehensive analysis of the fundamentals of substantive criminal law. Students will learn the essential elements of crimes and the rationale underlying criminal law. The nature of jurisdiction, the criminal act, the criminal state of mind and matters affecting responsibility for criminal conduct are included.

This course focuses on the rules and procedures governing how the American criminal justice system must process individuals suspected, accused, and convicted of law violations.

This course provides students with a broad overview of the history, theory, and fundamentals of criminal investigation. Students are introduced to the basic responsibilities of investigators and protocols for report writing, evidence collection, and preparation of cases for trial. They also learn specific investigative techniques for different types of crimes, such as crimes involving violence and property, terrorism, and hate crimes, and, where appropriate, compare investigative protocols from other legal cultures.


Take CRIM-120, CRIM-121.

Principles of Economics introduces the fundamental concepts of economics - the study of how people manage resources, and how they react to scarcity. This course focuses on both microeconomics (the behavior of consumers and companies) and macroeconomics (large-scale economic factors such as employment and interest rates), so that you'll gain a broad understanding of how a modern market economy functions, how decisions in business settings are informed by economics, and how economics applies to your everyday life.

Students will study important themes in the social history of the United States since the Civil War. This course allows students to expand their critical thinking skills through an examination of primary and secondary sources. Themes might include: the evolving status of women; the immigrant experience; the concept of the American dream; the paradox of freedom vs. slavery; the minority experience; the tensions between social classes. Students will be evaluated primarily on writing assignments.

In this course, students will explore broad, foundational knowledge in psychology, including its history, major theorists and a survey of psychology subfields such as developmental, cognitive and social psychology. Students will also describe and assess the role of ethics and social responsibility in the study and application of psychological theory and practices.

In this class, students will explore how social relationships, groups, societies and culture develop and change over time. From a sociological theory foundation and employing the sociological imagination, students will examine the impact of social structures, institutions, and systems on individual lives. Students will apply sociological research methods to investigate sociological phenomena in their own lives.

Graduates of the game development bachelor's online program will demonstrate the following industry-specific skills, knowledge, and competencies:

  • Analyze and categorize computer game types, technologies, genres, and targeted audiences based on their distinct characteristics.
  • Apply software design principles to optimize computer games for playability, usability, and accessibility across various platforms.
  • Collaborate effectively in remote environments and promote diversity, equity, and inclusion in game development.
  • Design and implement engaging game mechanics for diverse physical abilities, including puzzles, branching scenarios, and Non-Player Characters.
  • Utilize programming techniques and pseudocode for efficient game development and implementation, considering usability and accessibility.
  • Integrate multimedia assets into game frameworks, with attention to aesthetics, functionality, and accessibility.
  • Evaluate the societal impact of games, addressing bias and incorporating principles of diversity, equity, inclusion, accessibility, and usability in game design.

Champlain College Online's game development faculty, led by Cybersecurity Program Chair Kathleen Hyde, MCIS, MBA, are expert practitioners in the field. Their industry expertise ensures that our curriculum is aligned with the needs of employers, and reflects the skills today’s game development professionals need for success. Classes led by our seasoned experts will give you entree into the world of gaming, and create a rich community of career-focused learning.

Tuition & Costs

Online Undergraduate Tuition Fall '23 - Summer '25

$335 per credit
$1,005* per course
$290** per credit for Champlain alumni or associate degree graduates from any college or university
$250 per credit for military service members (family members see truED tuition)
$150 One-time graduation fee

*Based on a 3-credit course; cost will vary if course is a different number of credits

** Starts Summer 2024, not retroactive 

See the undergraduate cost of attendance and fees here

What To Expect at Champlain Online

Expect Convenience

Go to school wherever and whenever is best for you, on the device of your choice.

Expect A Career Focus

Relevant and immediately applicable coursework gets you ready for your next career move

Expect Support

Your dedicated academic advisor provides the support you need to meet your academic goals

Expect Superior Faculty

Learn from practitioner faculty working in the field, with real-world experience and knowledge.

You may also be interested in

Learn More About The BS in Game Development Program

Learn what you can expect from our online bachelor's in game development program.

Sunset over Lake Champlain from Champlain College campus in Burlington, Vermont

Download Program Guide

I acknowledge that, by clicking the "submit" button, I am giving my express written consent to Champlain College and its representatives to contact me about educational opportunities via email, text, or phone, at the phone number above, including my mobile phone, using an automatic dialer, or pre-recorded message. Message and data rates may apply. I understand that my consent is not a requirement for enrollment, and I may withdraw my consent at any time.