RIT game design and development programs jump in rankings

Annual Princeton Review list ranks undergraduate program No. 3, graduate program No. 4

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The Princeton Review ranked RIT’s undergraduate game design program the third best college in the world.

Rochester Institute of Technology is one of the top universities in the world for students who want to study and create games, according to new international rankings from The Princeton Review.

RIT’s game design and development programs moved up in 2023, ranking third at the undergraduate level and fourth at the graduate level. In 2022, RIT ranked fourth and sixth, respectively. RIT’s programs are housed in the School of Interactive Games and Media (IGM) within the Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences.

“RIT is the place to be, if you want to push games’ boundaries,” said David Schwartz, director of IGM. “We have students working together on games in hundreds of classes and more than 20 departments. Our strength is in how we continue to build connections between our technology, arts, and design excellence.”

RIT offers several paths for aspiring game designers, including bachelor’s degrees, a master’s in game design and development, and an accelerated BS/MS option. Computing and information sciences Ph.D. students are also specializing in games research.

RIT students can also develop and commodify games at the university’s MAGIC Center. The studio supports the entrepreneurial ambitions of students and faculty who are seeking to publish and distribute films, games, and interactive experiences or start new digital media businesses. Many students and alumni go on to publish their games.

In a press release, The Princeton Review’s editor-in-chief noted that students enrolled in the top game design programs gain exceptional experience. In recent years:

  • More than 78 percent of the students in the programs worked on a shipped game as part of their studies.
  • Nearly all of the students in the programs developed an actionable plan to launch a functional game after graduation. At undergraduate programs, that figure was 95 percent. At graduate programs, it was 99 percent.

Students at RIT get to take part in cooperative education—full-time paid work experiences that provide an opportunity to learn on the job in real-world industry settings. With help from the co-op program, graduates of RIT’s game design and development programs have started careers at companies including Rockstar Games, Cartoon Network, Electronic Arts (EA), Sony Interactive Entertainment, Epic Games, and Microsoft.

The Princeton Review tallied the 2023 ranking based on a survey of administrators at 150 institutions offering game design courses and/or degrees. Most of the institutions are in the U.S., while two are in Canada and seven are abroad. The survey covered four areas: academics, faculty, technology, and career prospects.

The full lists, which name the “Top 50” undergraduate and “Top 25” graduate schools, are posted on the Top Game Design Schools 2023 website. There, users can also review the methodology and profiles about each school. The 14th annual list is also published in the May issue of PC Gamer magazine.

Learn more about RIT’s offerings in Game Design, Development, and Arts.

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