Video games have become one of the leading forms of artistic expression in the 21st century. The Digital Design – Game Design one-year graduate certificate is a rigorous program of study that focuses on the principles and techniques of video game design and production required to break into the industry.


Program name
Digital Design – Game Design
Experiential learning
Field placement available with portfolio approval
1 year (3 semesters)
Starting month
Ontario College Graduate Certificate
Method of study

Year of Study

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Program Availability

Domestic students
Sept. 2020 Open
Jan. 2021 N/A
May 2021 N/A
International students
Sept. 2020 Open
Jan. 2021 N/A
May 2021 N/A

Full Description

The Digital Design – Game Design program develops the production and design abilities of students in management scenarios through courses in design documentation, milestone and pipeline scheduling, game design theory and psychology. Taught by faculty with industry experience and mentored by local game industry leaders, students will learn how to design and develop games, not only for the entertainment market but also for serious gaming applications in health, education, construction, marketing and other sectors.

Students will have the unique opportunity to develop commercial quality games in a simulated video game studio environment, at times working with industry partners, game artists and programmers.

It is anticipated that graduates of this program will find employment in the game industry. Prior to graduation, each student will have assembled a portfolio/demo of their creative work demonstrating their ability in game design and highlighting their chosen area of specialization.

Watch our video for sample work from our Game Design students.

Experiential Learning

Field placement available with portfolio approval

Your Field Study options

Students with approved portfolios are eligible for non-mandatory external field placements in Semester 3.

Program Standards and Learning Outcomes

The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to:

  1. Design environment and characters using the principles of game design.
  2. Read, analyze and create game design documents for effective game creation and management.
  3. Create environments, objects and characters for integration within a video game.
  4. Import game assets and levels into game engines to create appropriate high-end 3D game applications or engines.
  5. Produce a 3D game using appropriate tools and game management techniques.
  6. Create and produce digital components, games and documentation using a variety of computer platforms.
  7. Prepare a variety of industry standard documents and prototypes in a skilled manner and demonstrate professional presentation and organizational skills.
  8. Develop and present a working game design document for a marketable game.
  9. Use an existing game engine to create a prototype game.
  10. Evaluate different types of games and platforms and select the appropriate ones for a particular game strategy.
  11. Present the game design prototype and document using innovative techniques as well as digital, verbal and written skills.
  12. Manage the design and production process of a game prototype.

Required Courses


semester courses
CodeCourse Name
DESN1101Game Design Theory I
DESN1140Narrative Design I
DESN1141Game Psychology I
DESN1143Advanced Level Design I
DESN1145Game Management I
DESN1147Design Documentation
DESN1122Game Production Thesis I


semester courses
CodeCourse Name
DESN1111Game Design Theory II
DESN1149Narrative Design II
DESN1142Game Psychology II
DESN1144Advanced Level Design II
DESN1146Game Management II
DESN1148Game Business
DESN1123Game Production Thesis II


semester courses
CodeCourse Name
DESN1072Game Experiential Project
DESN1088Studio Entrepreneurship

Detailed course outlines

General Education Electives

Your Career

Graduates may go on to careers designing and managing design in the game and digital media sector or in their own business. Graduates of this program will have acquired the necessary skills to be employed as:

  • Game Designers
  • Creative Directors
  • Level Designers
  • Producers
  • Project Managers

Educational/Degree Pathway

G405 Game Design Program Educational Path Diagram



Additional Cost

* Amounts listed are the total of tuition, materials (non-refundable), student service and ancillary fees for the three semesters of programs starting in Fall 2019. Fees are subject to change for programs starting in Fall 2020 and at later dates.

International students: Visit the International Fees and Related Costs page for more information.

Financial Assistance

This program is approved for OSAP funding, provided the applicant meets OSAP eligibility criteria.

Admission Requirements

* Qualified applicants will be invited to complete the application questionnaire and submit a portfolio and resume electronically. Details on these supplementary requirements will be communicated at a later date to qualified applicants, as part of the review process. Qualified applicants may also be invited for an interview.

English Language Proficiency

Applicants with international transcripts who do not provide English proficiency test results must test at the College level in the George Brown College English assessment to be considered for admission. In addition, applicants who are considered for admission to the program based solely on their work experience will be required to provide proof of English proficiency at the college level, and may be required to write the George Brown College English admission assessment.

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Course Exemptions

College or university credits may qualify you for course exemptions. Please visit for more information.

International (Visa) Students

Visit the International Admissions page for more information.

Apply to

Domestic students should apply through Ontario Colleges

Success Stories

Watch the video below to see some of the incredible work created by students of the Digital Design – Game Design program.

Contact Us

School of Design

Phone: 416-415-5000, ext. 3129


Game Development Program Co-ordinator: Jean-Paul Amore, ext. 3427 or

For more information about George Brown College, you may also call the Contact Centre at 416-415-2000 (TTY 1-877-515-5559) or long distance 1-800-265-2002.

Visit Our Campus

This program is part of our School of Design, located at our Waterfront Campus, at 3 Lower Jarvis St., Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

School of Design Building

The School of Design resides in a new 103,000-square-foot facility in the Daniels Waterfront – City of the Arts development. This state-of-the-art building supports academic programs and industry projects with features such as:

  • Virtual and augmented reality lab
  • Usability and testing lab
  • Future Ways of Living lab
  • Peer tutor lab
  • Digital Sandbox
  • Incubators
  • Prototyping and workshop spaces
  • Design and innovation showcase spaces

Come and have your questions answered, learn about the program content and career options, meet your friendly professors and staff, and experience what it is like to be in a George Brown College classroom at one of our information sessions. You can also book a campus tour.

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    George Brown College is continually striving to improve its programs and their delivery. The information contained in this calendar is subject to change without notice. It should not be viewed as a representation, offer or warranty. Students are responsible for verifying George Brown College admission, graduation, and fee requirements as well as any requirements of outside institutions, industry associations, or other bodies that may award additional designations concurrently with, or after completion of, a George Brown College program.