Master of Science in
Games

The Programme

Playing can be a form of communication, of learning, of social interaction, as well as entertainment. From video games to user experience design, from e-sports to gamification, our world is full of games and playfulness.

With an MSc in Games you will become the game creator of the future. Based on a solid foundation of creative, technical, social, and analytical competences, you will realize the playful experiences of tomorrow. By understanding the complex creative process of game production, and how interdisciplinary teams work together, you will be able to make a difference in any project that uses game technology or playful design.

 

The MSc in Games provides you with theoretical and practical knowledge on how computer games are made, how they create meaning, and how they socially impact us. You will work with some of the world’s leading games researchers, explore cutting edge technologies for their playful potential, and become an expert in how to realize creative projects in interdisciplinary teams. You will learn how to use design methods, analytical tools, critical thinking, and scientific research to drive innovation.

The programme has an international perspective and is taught in English. There will be used cases and examples from both Danish and international organisations.

Non-curricular events at the university can be held in Danish.

The Technology Track

Carolina tells about studying Games at ITU. 

The Design Track

Martin is a student on the Games Design Track. Hear what he likes about the programme here. 

Who studies Games?

As a student of Games, you want to be an innovator in the field of games and play. You are not afraid of getting your hands dirty when learning the applied skills of game design and programming. You bring curiosity in games as a cultural phenomenon and you are ready to have your view of what can be done with games and playfulness radically expanded. 

You have a university bachelor’s degree or a professional bachelor’s degree and are either already able to write code or will learn the competence of programming while studying in the programme. There is a great deal of group work on this programme, so you should be motivated to collaborate with other students, especially across disciplines.

Programme Structure

The foundation of the Games Programme is to provide a solid understanding of the design process of games, their technical basis, and their cultural impact. Through extensive project work, you will learn to collaborate in interdisciplinary teams as well as realize a number of prototypes of games and playful experiences. You can choose between two tracks in the programme:

  • The Technology Track
  • The Design Track

 

The IT University is in continuous dialogue and collaboration with the games industry, so the skills you learn in this education are highly applicable within and outside the games industry. While both tracks allow you to work in the development of games and playful experiences, the Technology Track provides additional skills needed to implement game-specific technology and requires a bachelor in computer science or equivalent. The Design Track on the other hand focusses on exploring playful design methods and requires no prior programming skills.

See the curriculum for MSc in Games.

Course of study for MSc in Games
1st semester Games & Culture
7,5 ECTS
Game Programming *
7.5 ECTS
Making Games
15 ECTS
Programming for Designers **
7.5 ECTS
2nd semester Data-Driven Design and Development
7,5 ECTS
Elective
7,5 ECTS
Elective
7,5 ECTS
Specialisation
Data Science in Games
*
7,5 ECTS
Specialisation
Psychology of Play and Games**
7,5 ECTS
3rd semester

Cross-disciplinary team work
7,
5 ECTS

Specialisation
Graphics Programming *
7,5 ECTS
Specialisation (including Thesis Prep)
Modern Artificial Intelligence *
15 ECTS
Specialisation
Advanced Game Studies **
7,5 ECTS
Specialisation (including Thesis Prep)
Play Lab **
15 ECTS
4th semester Thesis
(30 ECTS)

* The Technology Track 
** The Design Track


Mandatory courses

The mandatory content is distributed on the following courses:

  • Game Prototyping: A course focusing on applied design research in computer game design, as well as design and development of prototypes.
  • Games & Culture: A course conveying the necessary tools for analysing games from a comprehensive variety of angles, ranging from classic play theories and semiotics to transmedia.
  • Data-Driven Production: This course teaches an analytical toolset for evaluating design decisions and techniques for developing analytical tools to support this.
  • Game Programming/Programming for Designers: These courses teach programming techniques for computer games on different levels.
  • Game Project: In these courses, you learn the basics of game production as a design and software development practice by making and testing a game in a multidisciplinary group.

On your second semester, you will begin your specialisation.

 

Electives and Master's Thesis

The electives and the master’s thesis offer an opportunity to shape your own profile. You can choose between a number of courses offered at the IT University at master level for electives, or even take electives at a different Danish or international university. The master’s thesis can be done in groups or individually.

The course list offers descriptions of all courses offered at the IT University.


More

Hide

Specialisations

Each track offers a particular specialisation for its students. A specialisation consists of two courses about a specific area of the field of games and a third course that prepares you for the master’s thesis.

The Technology Track specialisation aims at introducing students to different concepts, methods, and algorithms within the area of Artificial Intelligence. These are all connected with and applicable in game production. You will learn to implement state of the art AI algorithms and how to use them to improve the gaming experience.

The Design Track specialisation teaches you how to be creative with play design methods. From playfully exploring the potential of new technologies to the psychology of why and how we play, it provides a toolset and theoretical grounding for creating innovative interactive experiences. 


All Games students can apply for taking part in DADIU in the third semester. DADIU (The Danish Academy of Digital, Interactive Entertainment) is a programme training you in making computer games. The programme is coordinated by the National Film School of Denmark and is a joint collaboration between a large number of universities and art schools in Denmark.

You are free to apply for an individual specialization that fits your own goals. Another interesting option, especially in the third semester, is to study abroad (see below).


Thesis example

 Phillip Phoelich and Óscar Losada.

»

We wanted to see if we could make a realistic VR hand that doesn’t enter objects, without losing the player’s experience of being present inside the virtual world.

Óscar Losada og Phillip Phoelich, MSc in Games

«

Thesis example

»

We wanted to do something different with VR. Playing a VR game can feel very isolated, and interacting with people outside the game is difficult. So we decided to investigate what would happen if we created a game where one player is inside the VR experience and the other player is outside.

Elisa Marchesi, Martin Thomsen, Fran Avilés and Sonny Dalheim, MSc in Games

«

Tell Me What You See.

Activities for students on Games

Demo Night

Three times per semester the Games Programme hosts a demo night, where unfinished prototypes get showcased and played together. This event is open to guests and everyone can come to demonstrate any game-related project that is not finished. A guest speaker from the games industry opens the event. 

Global Game Jam

The Global Game Jam is the world's largest game jam event taking place around the world at physical locations. Think of it as a hackathon focused on game development. It is the growth of the idea that in today’s heavily connected world, we could come together, be creative, share experiences, and express ourselves in a multitude of ways using video games – it is very universal. Every year, the IT University traditionally hosts a Global Game Jam location. Games students usually help running the event but also take part. The event has been the starting point for commercial games, friendships, and entire companies.

 

Summer Games

Every year the IT University runs an exhibition of games made by you and your fellow students. We invite international guest speakers and enjoy an afternoon of play. To this event, we also invite the local games press and industry friends of the programme.

Student Exchange

You have the opportunity to take a part of your programme at a university abroad. Especially the 3rd semester is well suited for an exchange stay. This is a chance for you to further specialise your education and have the experience of working in a new environment in a new country. The IT University has exchange agreements around the world, for example:

 
 

ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS

To apply to the Games programme, you need a university bachelor’s degree or a professional bachelor’s degree. If you have a different education (e.g. an international education), which is comparable to a university or professional bachelor’s degree, the IT University (ITU) will make an individual assessment of the education in question. A prerequisite for admittance is a language requirement of level B English.

The MSc in Games is divided into two tracks (Games Technology and Games Design), and there are education specific admission requirements for the Games Technology Track.

Education specific admission requirements for the MSc in Games, Games Technology Track:

To apply for admission on the Games Technology Track, you need a bachelor’s degree in computer science, or something equivalent to this. Here you can see a list of bachelor educations, which live up to the admission requirements. If you do not have a degree from one of the bachelor educations on the list, but you do have a degree from an equivalent bachelor education, your application must include a list of the courses you have had that are equivalent to the courses listed below:

  • Object Oriented Programming, or something similar (15 ECTS minimum)

  • Algorithms and Data Structures (5 ECTS minimum)

  • Discrete Mathematics and/or courses in vector mathematics (5 ECTS minimum)

Applying for admission to the MSc in Games, Games Design Track

When assessing your application for the Games Design Track, it is an advantage, but not a requirement, if you have completed one of the bachelor educations, or passed the courses, listed here.

Please note: the lists of educations are not exhaustive. The lists are subject to change, and we encourage you to check up on them continuously. ITU admits students with very different educational backgrounds.

With a legal right to admission

You have a legal right to admission on the MSc in Games, Games Design Track if you have a BSc in Digital Design and Interactive Technologies from ITU. You have a legal right to admission on the MSc in Games, Games Technology Track if you have a BSc in Software Development from ITU.

If you have a legal right to admission, you only need to create an application in the application portal.

Without a legal right to admission

You need to upload the following documentation:

  • A copy of your bachelor diploma (in English or one of the Nordic languages), including a transcript of courses and grades, or a preliminary transcript of your grades, if you are taking your qualifying education from a Danish institution. If you have a foreign qualifying education, you will also need to send documentation for expected completion.

  • Motivated letter of application. The motivated letter must be written in English and should be a maximum of two pages long. The application must be uploaded in PDF-format and have a maximum size of 10 MB. You can find a guide to writing a motivated letter for the MSc in Games here.

  • You need to fill out this template, even if your education is on the list of bachelor educations that live up to the education specific requirements. The template must be uploaded in PDF-format.

  • Portfolio. Your portfolio is made up of previously completed work and activities. The portfolio should include 3-5 examples or descriptions of practical or analytical projects that you have done alongside your studies. This could for example include games, essays, work with design or cartoons/comic books. The portfolio must be sent as one PDF-file with a table of contents in English (the content does not need to be in English). The PDF-file should have a maximum size of 10 MB.

  • Documentation for level B English or a language proficiency test. The documentation must be in English or one of the Nordic languages.

  • If you have previously been enrolled on a higher education, but have not completed it (in Denmark or abroad), you must upload documentation for any exams that you have passed on this education. The documentation should be in English or one of the Nordic languages.

If your bachelor education is not on the list of educations that live up to the education specific admission requirements

When applying for admission on the Games Technology Track with a bachelor’s degree that is not on the list, but is equivalent to those on the list, you must fill out this template. Here, you must show how you believe you live up to the admission requirements, comparable to the following courses:

  • Object Oriented Programming or equivolent (minimum 15 ECTS) and
  • Algorithms and Data Structures (minimum 5 ECTS) and 
  • Discrete Mathematics and/or courses  in vector mathematics (minimum 5 ECTS)

When applying for admission on the Games Design Track with a bachelor’s degree that is not on the list, but is equivalent to those on the list, you must fill out this template. Here, you must show how you believe you live up to the admission requirements, comparable to the following courses:

  • User-centred design (15 ECTS minimum) or
  • Game design (15 ECTS minimum) or
  • Interaction design (15 ECTS minimum) or
  • Creative media studies (15 ECTS minimum) or
  • At least one practical design project, game-related research project or games project (15 ECTS minimum) 

You should only put down ECTS-awarding courses.

Make sure you have all the documentation ready before you start your application. You should also save drafts of your application in the application portal continuously. Read more about how to live up to the documentation requirements in the section on “Documentation” below.

You can only apply by sending a digital application through the application portal. It is your responsibility to make sure you complete the application procedure correctly, and that you send your application in by the deadline. The application portal opens in the middle of January.

APPLY HERE


 

Logon guide

It is very important that you read the Logon guide, tips and help before you begin your application. The guide gives you step-by-step help with text and images throughout the application process, and we refer to the logon guide for help with any issues you encounter, before you contact ITU.

Confirmation of receipt of your application

You will receive an email from the application system, as documentation for having applied in time. You cannot speed up the processing of your application through personal inquiry.

Read more about what happens after you have sent your application.




All applications that live up to the admission requirements for the programme will be looked through and assessed based on an overall evaluation, which is in turn based on the following:

  • The grade point average from your bachelor education (counts for 50% of the overall evaluation)
  • Your qualifications as seen in your portfolio, previous studies and your motivated letter (counts for 50% of the overall evaluation)

    1 March at 23.59

    You can already from the middle of January. You will receive an answer to your application no later than 10 June, and study start is in late August.
    Note: the MSc programmes have restricted admission.

Documentation for level B English

You need to document an English language proficiency of at least level B (Danish high school levels) in one of the following ways:

  • You have passed a level B English exam in the course of taking a Danish high school exam (or through supplementary courses)

  • You have taken a relevant English test with a certain score. The test cannot be more than 2 years old
    Requirements for the English test:
    TOEFL paper-based test result: 560 minimum
    TOEFL IBT test result: 88 minimum
    IELTS (academic) test result: 6.5 minimum
    Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English: passed
    Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English: passed

  • You have taken an English-language high school exam or bachelor’s degree in Denmark, in another EU country, Norway, Iceland, Switzerland, USA, Canada, South Africa, Australia or New Zealand.

  • You have a qualifying bachelor’s degree from a Danish university (not a professional bachelor’s degree).

It is possible to apply before you have completed any necessary language proficiency test or supplementary courses. Instead, you must then upload documentation for being called to the test or being admitted to the course. No later than one month before study start, you must upload the results of the test or supplementary course in the application portal. If your result does not comply with the admission requirements, your admission will be annulled. Applicants who are not EU/EEA (EØS) citizens and who have to pay tuition fees will need to upload the results of the language proficiency test or supplementary course no later than 3 weeks after the application deadline.

The university code for TOEFL is 9015. You will need this code when you sign up for a TOEFL test. No code is needed for IELTS.

Copy of diploma, including transcript of your grades, from your qualifying education

If your qualifying education is a combination of several educations, you will have to send a diploma and transcript of your grades for each separate education. A combined education could for example be a multimedia design or a computer science education as top-up degrees from a bachelor’s degree.

Documentation for having passed elements of a master education

If you have previously been enrolled on a higher education on a master level, without completing it, it is your duty to upload documentation for any elements of the education that you have passed. This documentation will be used to assess whether to give you a starting credit for some of these elements.

Have you previously passed a Danish education on an equivalent or higher level?

If you have previously passed a Danish full-time master-level education, or another Danish full-time education on an equivalent or higher level, you will, as a rule, not be admitted to a new full-time master level education.

You can apply for an exemption from this rule if: 

  • A minimum of 6 years have passed between the completion of your previous education and study start on the new education
  • We assess that, for health reasons, you cannot use your completed education on the work market
  • We assess that your previously completed education has changed drastically or no longer exists

If you have not yet completed your qualifying education

If you have not yet completed your qualifying education, you will need to upload an updated transcript of your grades. If you are missing more than 60 ECTS to complete your education, you will also have to give an account of how you expect to complete the education before study start at ITU. If you are taking a foreign qualifying education, and if ECTS are not shown on the transcript, your institution will also need to confirm your expected completion time.

Only for non-EU/EEA (EØS) citizens with permanent residence permit in Denmark

Non-EU/EEA (EØS) citizens who reside in Denmark, and who wish to be exempt from paying tuition fees on their master level education, must send in documentation of their permanent residence permit or their residence permit with the possibility of permanent residence.

Foreign qualifying education

Foreign diplomas that are neither in English nor in one of the Scandinavian languages must be translated into Danish or English by the educational institution, an authorized translator or a public authority. If you are admitted, you must also show your original diploma at study start.

Further information?

If you have questions concerning the application procedure, please contact Student Affairs and Programmes.

It is also always a good idea to contact the Study and Career Guidance before you apply, if you have any unanswered questions or other doubts.


Which students are NOT charged tuition fees?

The following groups of students are not charged any tuition fees at the IT University of Copenhagen:

  • Students from countries within the EU/EEA 
  • Students on bilateral exchange programmes (e.g. Erasmus. Check with the international office at your own university) 
  • US students with a Fulbright scholarship
  • Students, who started studying at the IT University January 2006 or earlier

Which students are charged tuition fees?

Students from countries outside the European Union (EU) and the European Economic Area (EEA) are charged tuition fees.

How much is the tuition fee?

The tuition fee for a two years full study pr. 1 January 2012 is 200,000 DKK. The tuition fees are payable by biannual instalments in advance of each term, i.e. DKK 50,000 per term.

If you start your MSc programme after 2012 the price of a full two years of study may have changed. Keep an eye on this website - we update our information on tuition fees every January.

Note that the IT University grants a scholarship to three or four exceptionally talented MSc applicants from non- EU/EEA countries. See more under Scholarships below.

Demonstration of funds

The Danish Immigration Service will ask students from outside the Nordic countries and EU/EEA countries to demonstrate funds before issuing a residence permit.

Please find further information about residence permit.

Exemptions from paying tuition fee

You may be exempted from paying a tuition fee if you have one of the following two residence permits in Denmark:

  • Permanent residence permit ("Permanent opholdstilladelse")
  • Temporary residence permit with the possibility of achieving a permanent residence permit ("Midlertidig opholdstilladelse m.m.f. varigt ophold")

However, having a student visa does NOT under any circumstances exempt you from paying a tuition fee. Please contact the Study Administration for further information. 

If you have one of the above residence permits, it is very important that you submit documentation for this to the Study Administration. We accept the following documentation:

  • A certified copy of your residence permit letter from the Danish Immigration Service
  • A certified copy of your residence permit card
  • A certified copy of the page in your passport showing your residence permit.

Based on the documentation submitted, the Study Administration will grant or deny exemption. If you are exempted from paying a tuition fee, you must meet the deadlines applicable to EU/EEA applicants.

Scholarships

The IT University of Copenhagen offers state scholarships to three or four exceptionally talented MSc applicants (full-degree students) from outside EU and EEA every year. The scholarships will be offered to the applicants who achieve the best scores according to the criteria in our admission rules. The state scholarships consist of free tuition and partly covering of living expenses.

Applicants cannot apply for the scholarships. The IT University considers all admitted MSc students for the scholarships and informs the students chosen for the scholarships in their letter of admission.

Please note that if you receive a scholarship, you will have to follow and pass full time studies.

To see information about living and accommodation in Denmark, see here.

Teaching

The teaching methods include lectures, group projects and exercises. Your teachers will be some of the world’s foremost experts on computer games, mainly from the Center for Computer Games Research. Through research-based teaching you will be exposed to contemporary games research.

The IT University has a close collaboration with the business community and the games industry, and the programme is designed to give you the opportunity to collaborate with private companies. This means you will be able to work with current real-world challenges, and you will have an opportunity to make a network in the games industry even before you graduate.

As a Games student, you will become part of a dynamic and creative environment. You might experience that your studies become a lifestyle. After all, lectures, teaching and workshops are only half of student life.

The programme is taught in English. However, there will be used both Danish and international cases and examples in classes.

Career

The competencies you acquire during your MSc in Games are highly applicable both within and outside the games industry, and you will be enable to seek a career in Denmark or internationally, for example as:  

  • Game director
  • Game developer
  • Project manager
  • Producer
  • QA-manager

Your profile is also suited for a wide range of jobs in application development, consultancy, and in public institutions as well as for entrepreneurship.

If you choose the Game Technology track you will be qualified to apply for jobs like:

  • Programmer
  • System developer
  • Software architect
  • AI Engineer
  • Data Analyst

 

Examples of positions you can be qualified for after graduating in the Game Design track include:

  • Game Designer
  • Level Designer
  • Interaction Designer
  • Data Analyst
  • Game researcher

Additionally, independent of your track you will be able to work e.g. with:

  • Gamification – designing and developing educational tools, public services or applications
  • Interaction Design – working on any engaging and highly interactive digital product or service
  • Analog games – aside from PC games and apps you can focus on the playfulness of board games, escape rooms, etc.
If you are interested in applying for a PhD at the IT University please see here.

#lifeatitu

Are you interested in studying at the IT University of Copenhagen, please contact The Study and Career Guidance.

Room 3D05 and 3D07
Rued Langgaards Vej 7
DK-2300 København S

Phone: +45 7218 5240

Email: studievejledningen@itu.dk