Certificate in Game Design

Design the future.

Change the Game

Create and code your way into a new career path with a certificate in game design. It's the perfect opportunity for those who want to use games as a platform for something greater. The game design certificate program combines game design and game development, merging the strengths of the School of Communication and College of Arts and Sciences. It is crafted to develop the intellectual capacity of students as designers, developers, critics, and leaders.

Game design certificate students bring to the program their own experiences and passions — politics, science, art, history, international studies — and marry them to game design skills and concepts to develop new approaches to business challenges.


The School of Communication reviews graduate applications on an ongoing basis until programs reach capacity. Learn more about our admissions process.

Our Certificate in Game Design is a 15-credit-hour program which is completed within a year. 

Estimated Cost of Tuition

The Cetrificate in Game Design is a 15 credit program. To estimate the cost of tuition, please see the current cost per credit hour for graduate students.

Frequently Asked Questions

There is no typical Game Design 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 Center student, just a love for games and the desire to learn.

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.

With more than $60 billion in annual revenue, the game industry is bigger than Hollywood and almost surpasses the music industry.

The industry is constantly growing and shifting in different directions. Here are some quick facts about the gaming industry you might not know about:

  • At least 155 million Americans play video games!
  • The video game industry made 2.5 billion dollars in revenue in 2015.
  • There is a projected 30% increase in employment for game designed careers for 2018.
  • 23 game companies call the Washington, DC area home

Still have questions? Check our general admission FAQ or send us an email: GradComm@american.edu