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Students in the Game Lab develop games: a student writes on a board and other students work at a table covered in game pieces.

Create Games for Change

The MFA in Games and Interactive Media will help you create bridges and make change through the power of active engagement through games. Beyond traditional game design and development, students will learn to tailor play design to meet specific goals in player impact, focusing on both theory and practice. The program stretches the students' capacities as designers, developers, consumers, and administrators and prepares them to take on a variety of creative leadership and instructional roles. 

Consistently ranked as one of the best cities for job seekers, Washington, DC, offers game design master’s students unparalleled access to private and public sector opportunities. 

Take advantage of institutional relationships with government agencies, locally based companies, and not-for-profits alike. Clients you may contract with include the Educational Testing Service (ETS), the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM), and WAMU 88.5.  

Connect through renowned DC-held events, such as Indie Arcade at the Smithsonian Museum, Global Game Jam, Games+, and more. 

Whether your next career step is local or global, you’ll gain the skills and network you need to succeed.

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Inspiring Empathy with a Game

Games embrace ambiguity and create safe spaces to take risks.

Through studying play, as well as games, Joyce Rice has had the opportunity to look closer at why certain activities engage us, make us think and inspire creativity.

As a fellow with the JoLT project, Joyce worked in partnership with WAMU 88.5 on Commuter Challenge, a game created to inspire empathy for commuters in Washington, DC at the mercy of Metro. She also presented at the Game Developers Conference in 2016.

50 percent of Game Design students work with corporate, NGO and government partners

The AU Game Lab has a 4 to 1 Student-Faculty ratio

Frequently Asked Questions

There is no typical Game Lab student! Students bring their unique backgrounds and passions to the program, having addressed diverse topics such as mental health, social justice, journalism, politics, money management, and advertising. The program can lend itself to your particular area of interest.

You do not need to have a background in coding to become a Game Lab student, just a love for games and the desire to learn.

Still have questions? Send us an email: GradComm@american.edu

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