Art Institutes

Visual &Game Programming

I want to bring ideas to life.

There’s a market for creative minds who have the talent and tenacity it takes to breathe life into the ideas behind video game levels, characters, and stories. Those who succeed in this competitive field are able to combine a programmer’s skills and an artist’s vision to take on both creative and technical challenges. If you think you’re ready to test yourself in that market, our Visual & Game Programming degree program is the place to start. Using industry-driven programming tools, you’ll enhance the skills you already have and develop the ones you’ll need to spark imaginations...and start a career where you do what you love. From start to finish, you’ll be surrounded and inspired by other talented, creatively driven students. And you’ll be pushed, challenged, and, above all else, supported by experienced faculty*. It’ll be intense. Demanding. All-consuming. And totally worth it.

*Credentials and experience levels vary by faculty and instructors.

Degrees Offered

Bachelor of Science in Visual & Game Programming

Quarter Credit Hours:
12 Quarters

Gainful Employment


Bachelor of Science in Visual & Game Programming

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the program, graduates will have the opportunity to:
  • Demonstrate written and oral communication skills needed to present their work professionally, interactive communication skills essential to work as a team member, the skills to produce game design documents, and the ability to market themselves effectively.
  • Demonstrate essential skills to solve technical and conceptual problems. They can evaluate games critically and analyze computer code for correctness.
  • Demonstrate the ability to use technical programming concepts, and digital art methods in the production of gaming projects; an understanding of concepts and terminology in object-oriented programming; an ability to choose appropriate data structures and algorithms.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of industry-specific quantitative methods required for gaming projects. They can apply algorithmic reasoning and computational theory to game design.
  • Demonstrate the ability to analyze games based on game theory, strategy, and historical context. They are familiar with the physics of motion, light, and sound, applying the laws of physics to game design. They can apply the mathematical representations of position, motion, interaction, and shape to the representation of motion, curves and surfaces.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the game production pipeline. They demonstrate knowledge of planning, scope, soft skills, deadlines and economics necessary to produce a market-ready interactive game from concept to final product.

See for program duration, tuition, fees, and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

Classroom Experience

I like the part about hard work and competition.

It’s not easy combining art and design skills with technical know-how. You’ll need to immerse yourself in our program, starting with the fundamentals—from design, color, and computer applications to image manipulation and cinematography. You’ll explore storyboarding and scripting techniques, build 3D models and create 2D and 3D animation. We’ll show you how to create an interactive game prototype, applying your design, production, scripting, and storyboarding skills. Then you can develop intricate design techniques for game levels, characters, objects, and weapons. You can map sophisticated textures and explore UV mapping and lighting techniques. You’ll work long hours—and you’ll find yourself challenged by other like-minded students. See our gainful employment pages for possible careers that match the program that interests you.

What Will I Study?


I want to make a name for myself. And earn a living.

The rigorous, intensely hands-on Visual & Game Programming curriculum combines traditional animation skills with the technical skills to create three-dimensional graphics animation. You’ll work with classmates on team projects as you study:

  • Interactive Experience Design
  • Programming for the Artist
  • Game Design and Game Play
  • Character and Object Design
  • Scriptwriting and Storyboarding for Games
  • Gaming Algorithms
  • Interactive Design Concepts
  • Logic and Representation
  • Physics of Motion, Light & Sound
  • Sculpture for Animators
  • Game Scripting
  • Interface Design for Games
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Developing Rich Media Applications
  • Level Design
  • Webpage Layout and Design
  • Programming for Visual Simulations
  • Interactive Game Prototyping

I'm looking for my proving ground.

At The Art Institutes system of schools, creativity is our core, our calling, our culture. Our Visual & Game Programming degree program is built on that creative foundation. It’s also built on our knowledge that a creative career is not for the faint of heart. Because it’s tough out there, it’s tough in here. But we temper the tough with the support you need to make your creativity marketable. We provide the mentoring and real-world experience you need to prevail, with faculty* who’ve worked in the field and internship possibilities at successful businesses. Here, you’ll be encouraged and expected to be bold. To take risks. To push yourself and the people around you. So if your heart is telling you that you belong in a creative field, you belong here. It’s the hardest thing you’ll ever love.

*Credentials and experience levels vary by faculty and instructors.