RICHMOND, Ky. –A survey in the Princeton Review ranked Eastern Kentucky University’s game design program 47th of 150 institutions offering game design coursework and/or degrees in the United States, Canada, and some other countries.
The company’s 40-question survey asked schools to report on everything from their academic offerings and lab facilities to their graduates’ starting salaries and career achievements. Among criteria The Princeton Review weighed to make its selections: each school’s academics, facilities, career services, and technology.
“Many schools put ‘game’ in a course title, and these courses typically become popular with strong enrollment,” said Dr. George Landon, director of the EKU Gaming Institute (gaming.eku.edu). “However, the Princeton Review recognizes that a few game courses are not enough to prepare students for the game industry and can even mislead prospective students. The top-50 label demonstrates that we are consistently providing our students a world-class education in game development.”
Landon said he believed the program’s “close ties” with the game industry within and beyond Kentucky played a part in the high ranking. “We have also added new faculty. Jonathan Hale, an adjunct instructor, has extensive expertise in 2D and 3D game art and animation.”
EKU, which ranked 50th on the list a year ago, boasts one of the newer programs on the list. The Gaming Institute was established in 2014, whereas many of the game design programs on the top-50 list have been established for 10-20 years.
The Princeton Review developed its “Top Schools to Study Game Design” project in 2009 with assistance from a national advisory board that helped design the survey instrument and methodology. Board members included administrators and faculty from respected game design programs, as well as professionals from some of the top gaming companies.