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About the course

Do you love gaming? Do you dream of opening up your own indie studio? Responding to the rapid rise of the casual gaming market and designed for the future entrepreneurs of gaming – this course is ideally placed to help you develop the key skills needed to enter this exciting industry.

You’ll learn the latest development techniques from industry experts, covering programming, engine-based scripting and development tools. You’ll also cover game design, with a focus on producing fun, innovative games for mobile devices and PCs.

Crucially, the course also helps to ensure that students are equipped to open and manage their own studio. Areas of study include starting a business, managing teams, project management, intellectual property and general business administration.

Solent University is part of the Southern Independent Games Network (SIGN). This network is focused primarily on providing support in areas associated with the business of the games including funding, tax, marketing, law and intellectual property. This is carried out through a series of events and web-based resources, as well as by facilitating connections between members of the network and professionals within (and complimentary to) the video games industry. 

If you apply for this course with a placement year, you have the opportunity to undertake a year in industry between your second and third years.
Placement year
You have the opportunity to study abroad in one of our partner universities for a semester on this course.
Study abroad
If you're not quite ready for a full undergraduate degree, there's alternative entry through one of our foundation years.
Foundation year available
This course has access to Solent's specialist facilities.
Specialist facilities

You’ll benefit from access to a core teaching team of industry professionals from a wide range of computing and business disciplines.

What does this course lead to?

Graduates of the indie course will be looking to work in, or run, small independent game development teams as game or level designers, gameplay coders, technical artists or producers, and will develop the associated skills of running a small business and general entrepreneurship.

Outside the games industry, opportunities exist in general business systems development for those who have chosen the coding strand, while for the others, business and project management are viable options.

To help give you a start in the industry, students are encouraged to set up their own businesses with financial support and mentoring from the University’s employability and enterprise team.

Who is this course for?

This course is perfect for entrepreneurial gamers who wish to learn essential programming technologies alongside the key business skills required to set up and manage an independent gaming studio.

Facts and figures

UCAS codes icon

UCAS codes

Full Time

  • 3 Years Standard Entry I310
Fees icon

Fees and costs

Tuition fees

The tuition fees for the 2019/20 academic year are:
UK, EU and Channel Island full-time fees: £9,250 per year
International full-time fees: £12,875 per year
UK, EU and Channel Island placement year fees: £1,385
International placement year fees: £1,750

For further information, please visit our tuition fees page.

Bursaries and scholarships

Solent University offers a range of bursaries and scholarships that provide financial assistance or waive fees for tuition or accommodation. Each bursary or scholarship has specific eligibility criteria. Check out our bursaries and scholarships pages to find out more.

Key entry requirements icon

Key entry requirements

72 - 96 UCAS tariff points from A-levels or equivalent

  • A minimum of one A Level minimum Grade D in a relevant subject excluding General Studies and Key Skills, a BTEC Extended Diploma at MMM or BTEC Diploma at DD or equivalent, which comply with the minimum entry requirement of 72 UCAS points.
  • Direct entry to year two may be offered to holders of an HND or HNC in an appropriate subject.
  • Alternative entry to this course is available through the Foundation Year in Digital Arts
  • If you are applying from outside the UK, find information about entry requirements, visas and agents for your country here.

English language requirements

Applicants who do not have English as their first language will be required to demonstrate an approved level of proficiency in the use of the English language. The agreed minimum requirements for this course are:

  • IELTS minimum 6.0 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each individual component
  • TOEFL IBT minimum 80 with a minimum of 19 in each individual component
  • or equivalent.

Qualifications are checked before enrolment, and international students must bring their original certificates or certified copies when coming to study at the University.

The University also offers a pre-sessional English programme for international students who wish to improve their level of English before starting a degree course.


of students feel staff make the subject interesting

Study location

East Park Terrace

Got a question about this course?

Contact our Ask Solent team: 023 8201 5066

How to apply

Any student applying for the first year of a full-time/sandwich undergraduate course must apply through UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service). This includes mature, overseas and EU students.

Nearly all schools and colleges offer their students the facility of applying electronically through the UCAS website using 'Apply'; it may also be used by those applying independently in the UK and overseas. This facility and all course information can be found on the UCAS website:

Your application should reach UCAS by 15 January if you hope to enter a course the following autumn. Early application is advised for the most popular subject areas. Late applications may be made until the end of June. The UCAS code for the University is S30, code name SOLNT.

Please click the links below to apply through UCAS:

Mode of study
Full-time 3 years Apply
Placement Year 4 years Apply

Digital Arts Foundation Year route:

Mode of study
Full-time 4 years Apply
Placement Year 5 years Apply
How to apply

What you'll study

Year one

Core units
  • Programming Fundamentals
  • Scripting for Game Engines
  • Computer Art
  • Introduction to Databases
  • Digital Arts and Technology 
  • Maths for Games

Year two

Core units
  • Casual Game Development
  • Gameplay and Game Design
  • Mobile Game Fundamentals
  • Software Engineering for Games: Methods and Tools
  • Personal Development and Project Preparation
  • Game Business and Production Management

Year three

Core units
  • Video Game Design
  • Indie Game Project
  • Mobile Applications


  • Artificial Intelligence for Games
  • The Business of Games
  • Software Engineering for Games: Professional Practice
  • Sound for Video and Computer Games
  • Software Requirements Project Management
  • Computer Law and Intellectual Property

Please note: Not all optional units are guaranteed to run each year.


Web-based learning

Solent's virtual learning environment provides quick online access to assignments, lecture notes, suggested reading and other course information.

The Student Hub

The Student Hub is a central space where you can access all of the information and support you need during your time at University.

Professional and experienced staff can help resolve any query, and if they cannot answer the question themselves they will find the person who can.

Career support

Key figures


Written exams


Assessment by coursework


Practical exams

Students' work

Meet the course team

James TerKeurst academic profile James TerKeurst Senior Lecturer View profile
Neil Brewis academic profile Neil Brewis Senior Lecturer View profile
Mark Bennett academic profile Mark Bennett Lecturer View profile

The university cannot guarantee any particular members of staff will teach specific aspects of the course in the future, but will endeavour to ensure the teaching team maintains their balance of experience and qualifications.


We have a dedicated open access teaching area with all the specialised software you’ll need including Visual Studio, Perforce, DirectX, OpenGL, UDK 4.0, Unity, Source, Torque, Cocos2dx, Photoshop, 3d studio max, Maya and Mudbox. We also have a number of console development kits and the latest consoles to experiment on.

For mobile game development, we have a dedicated mobile lab with a selection of the latest handheld devices suitable for Android, iOS and Windows Phone 8 development.

Students also benefit from access to graphic tablets, a motion-capture studio and a user-experience lab.

We’re part of the Sony Developers Network and, as a result, you’ll have access to specialised kit that is usually reserved for development studios. You’ll also benefit from free access to dedicated gaming labs with a motion-capture studio, extensive hardware solutions and the latest industry-standard software packages.

Your future

Suitable roles for graduates include:

  • Indie business owner
  • Programmer
  • App designer
  • Technical artist
  • Assistant producer
  • App/mobile developer
  • Gameplay and AL programmer
  • Game engine programmer.


of students go on to work and/or study six months after finishing the course


of those are in a professional or managerial job

Industry links

At Solent, our excellent industry links play a key part in student development, and past students have had the opportunity to work on live briefs for real clients. In addition, our academic team is formed of expert professionals who have wide-ranging experience in video game technology and the gaming industry. 

Additionally, Solent is a founder member of SIGN. This not-for-profit network was established to represent and support independent video games developers and facilitate growth in the South’s independent video games development sector.

The course has very strong links to gaming via the teaching staff’s industry experience, proximity to the UK’s game development capital in London, and regular visits from industry professionals. Recent visitors have included staff from Codemasters, Climax, Aardvark Swift and Stainless Games. These visits cover a range of topics, including CV development, project feedback, design and testing, live development projects and paid work, pitching and competitions.

We encourage you to hone your skills in various industry competitions and game jams, such as Dare To Be Digital, Brains Eden and Get Into Games. You’ll also be encouraged to attend events such as Develop, GDC, Eurogamer and relevant British Computer Society (BCS) talks.


Students are encouraged to find holiday placements in the industry, with extensive help available in organising these placements. An optional one-year industry placement is also available after the second year. Past placements have included work for indie studios and games-testing companies.

Graduate stories

David's story

David Gallagher - Graduate Games Developer at Memini (The Richmond Group)

What made you choose to study at Solent?
The course was exactly what I was looking for, with lecturing in every part of game development. As I'm an artist and a programmer, this course was the best one I'd seen.

What was the best part of your course? 
The best part of the course for me was working with fellow classmates on projects for assignments, as well as having skilled lecturers who knew what they were talking about. I also participated in the Global Game Jam with fellow classmates, which tasked us with creating a game from scratch in 48 hours. 

What do you do now and what do you find most enjoyable about your work?
I'm now a games developer for The Richmond Group on one of their projects called Memini. What I find most enjoyable working here is that I can work with like-minded people to create games for the project.

What is your biggest achievement in your work so far?
My biggest achievement so far must be the creation of my first game under the company for the project.

What advice would you give to someone thinking about studying at Solent?
Depending on what course you're thinking of taking, Solent is great at providing those niche courses that not a lot of other universities offer.

Further study

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