BSc (Honours) Computer Science for Games with Foundation Year

Year of Entry 2024/25
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BSc (Honours)

Computer Science for Games with Foundation Year

Full-time Computing

Gain a degree in computer science for games, with an initial foundation year to prepare for the course.

Everything you need to know...

What is the fee? Home: £9,250 per year (£1,200 for placement year)
International/EU: £16,655 per year (£1,200 for placement year)
How long will I study? 4/5 Years
Where will I study? City Campus
What are the entry requirements? 80 UCAS Points
What is the UCAS code? A092
When do I start? September 2024
Placement year available? Yes

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Course summary

  • Build practical experience in writing software to create computer games. 
  • Study the hardware-level optimisations used in modern games. 
  • Learn how to write the libraries and tools used to develop games. 
  • Understand how to apply maths in 2D and 3D game development.
  • Prepare for the degree with an extra foundation year at the start

You’ll gain a deep understanding of C/C++ programming for game development processes and technologies – including rendering and optimisation techniques – using current gaming hardware. You’ll also put together a commercial-quality portfolio of computer game work during the course, suitable to show potential employers. 


How you learn

The course is suitable if you don’t meet the entry requirements for our BSc (Hons) Computer Science for Games course. You share the first year with other computing foundation year students, then move on to the degree. During the first year of study, you will enhance your skills to maximise your academic potential ready to start your learning against the content of the main degree.

All our courses are designed around a set of key principles based on engaging you with the world, collaborating with others, challenging you to think in new ways, and providing you with a supportive environment in which you can thrive. 

The course is carefully structured to help you develop your skills and experience for a career in game development – with the deeper level of knowledge you’ll need to create the tools used by game creators. One of the key ways you’ll learn is through a project-based approach, encouraging you to develop your skills while tackling meaningful and relevant projects.  

We begin by providing you with game development techniques such as programming in C++ and manipulating 2D and 3D graphics using mathematics. In your second year you’ll apply your learning to solve the kinds of problems game developers face. Here you’ll apply your C++ programming skills and learn about rendering techniques, multithreading, memory management and assembly optimisation. You’ll also work with our PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 development kits as you develop your own substantial game products.  

In your final year you’ll explore more advanced game development techniques such as shader programming, as well as refining the skills you’ve already developed. Importantly, you’ll develop skills in critical thinking so you can successfully reflect on your own work and appraise other people’s. This will give you the ability to evaluate your own progress and determine your own career goals. 

You learn through 

  • group work  
  • lectures and seminars  
  • technical workshops in computer labs 
  • independent learning 
  • practice-based learning and group work  

You will be supported in your learning journey towards highly skilled, graduate level employment through several key areas. These include: 

  • access to our unique student support triangle to help with your personal, academic and career development 
  • access to our Skills Centre with one to ones and online resources, where you can get help with planning and structuring your assignments 
  • industry-specific employability activities such as live projects, learning in simulated environments and networking opportunities 

Course leaders and tutors

No photo of Martyn Prigmore found
Martyn Prigmore
Senior Lecturer

Senior Lecturer at Sheffield Hallam University's College of Business, Technology and Engineering

Applied learning

Work placements 

You’ll have the opportunity to complete a year-long work placement between your third and fourth year. A placement is widely recognised as the gold standard opportunity to gain personal and professional development through real-world experience. 

You will be encouraged to take up this opportunity, as it will benefit your long-term career prospects and salary level, as well as your academic achievements and degree classification. Your course will prepare you to succeed in your placement and you will be supported throughout it. 

Your placement will allow you to apply the knowledge and skills gained on your course, in areas such as game tool development, game development, and software programming. 

Students from this course have worked with companies such as:  

  • Sony (SIEE) 
  • Sumo Digital 
  • 3Squared 
  • Autodesk 
  • Dumpling Design 
  • Jollywise Media 
  • SI Games  
  • SN Systems 
  • Supermassive 
  • Team17 

Your placement year will allow you to gain an Applied Professional Diploma in addition to your degree which will enhance your graduate profile and give you the edge with future employers.  

You’ll also be supported to take advantage of work experience opportunities throughout your course, through access to a range of support activities, resources, and employer events from your Employability Team. This will further enhance your employability skillset, confidence, and opportunity-awareness to help you succeed in your career after graduating.

Live projects

The Steel Minions Development Studio is an in-house games publishing company run by course tutors and staffed by students. Here students release their own projects commercially and connect with external publishers, research and commercial clients.  

Steel Minions provides commercial and research projects for you to work on – either internally or for external clients. Examples range from research projects in ballistics impact visualisation and educational games, through to commercial games on PlayStation 4, PC and mobile devices for companies like Sumo Digital, Sony and Owlerton Stadium.  

Steel Minions also provides mentoring to students who decide to create their own game development company during their placement year – and gives feedback to students working on game projects throughout the course. 

Networking opportunities 

We work in partnership with games companies such as Sumo Digital, SN Systems and Sony Interactive Entertainment Europe (SIEE). They provide equipment and input into the design, development and delivery of the course, making sure we’re teaching the very latest topics. We also work with Grads In Games to organise industry speakers to give talks on specialist topics and offer employability advice. 

Competitions 

There’s an annual student prize for the best software development tool, sponsored by SN Systems – a part of Sony Interactive Entertainment – where students from this course have consistently demonstrated success. 


Future careers

This course prepares you for a career in 

  • game development for consoles and PC 
  • game engine programming 
  • gameplay programming 
  • quality assurance testing 

Previous graduates of this course have gone on to work for 

  • Sumo Digital 
  • Unity 
  • Firebrand 
  • Twinkl 

Equipment and facilities

Most of the teaching on the course is conducted in our specialist game laboratories. These have industry-grade hardware and software.

You’ll work with:

  • three IT laboratories equipped with high-spec computers and graphics cards dedicated to game development 
  • industry/professional-grade software, including Unity and Unreal game development platforms, Adobe Creative Suite, and Microsoft’s Visual Studio 
  • PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 development kits, including the actual game console hardware and associated development software game playing facilities and arcade games for game evaluation/fun 

We’ve been awarded PlayStation®First status by Sony, providing access to PlayStation® professional development hardware and software and equipping students with industry-relevant game development skills across PlayStation® and PlayStation® VR. 

We’ve invested over £100m in new facilities to help you study how and when you want. This means 24-hour libraries and study spaces designed by our students. 

Entry requirements

All students

UCAS points

  • 80

This must include at least 32 points from one A level or equivalent BTEC qualifications. For example:

  • CDD at A Level
  • MMP in BTEC Extended Diploma
  • Pass overall from a T level qualification with C from core  
  • A combination of qualifications, which may include AS levels, EPQ and general studies.

You can find information on making sense of UCAS tariff points here and use the UCAS tariff calculator to work out your points.

GCSE

  • English Language or English Literature at grade C or 4
  • Maths at grade B or 5

• Access - an Access to HE Diploma with at least 45 credits at level 3 and 15 credits at level 2. At least 15 level 3 credits must be at merit grade or above from a QAA-recognised Access to HE course, or an equivalent Access to HE certificate.

We may also accept you, if you have limited qualifications but can show evidence of ability and a genuine commitment to studying the subject.

Some applicants may be invited to attend an informal interview with the course leader to ensure that the programme is suitable for themselves and their aspirations.

UK students may be able to claim financial support for the course.

If English is not your first language, you will need an IELTS score of 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in all skills, or equivalent. If your English language skill is currently below IELTS 6.0 we recommend you consider a Sheffield Hallam University Pre-sessional English course which will enable you to achieve an equivalent English score.

Additional information for EU/International students

If you are an International or non-UK European student, you can find out more about the country specific qualifications we accept on our international qualifications page.

For details of English language entry requirements (IELTS), please see the information for 'All students'.


Modules

Module and assessment information for future years is displayed as currently validated and may be liable to change. When selecting electives, your choices will be subject to the core requirements of the course. As a result, selections may be limited to a choice between one of two or more specified electives in some instances.

You will be able to complete a placement year as part of this course. See the modules table below for further information.

Year 1

Compulsory modules
Module Credits Assessment
Module: Foundations In Computing 1 Credits: 40 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Foundations In Computing 2 Credits: 40 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Maths For Foundation Computing Credits: 20 Assessment: Practical
Module: Study Skills For Computing Students Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework

Year 2

Compulsory modules
Module Credits Assessment
Module: Fundamentals Of C++ Programming Credits: 40 Assessment: Coursework
Exam
Module: Fundamentals Of Computer Architecture Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Mathematics For Graphics Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Programming 2D Games Credits: 40 Assessment: Coursework

Year 3

Compulsory modules
Module Credits Assessment
Module: 3D Game Development Credits: 40 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Mathematics For Modelling And Rendering Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Object Oriented C++ Programming Credits: 40 Assessment: Coursework
Exam
Module: Software-Hardware Optimisation Techniques Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework

Year 4

Optional modules
Module Credits
Module: Placement Year Credits: -

Final year

Compulsory modules
Module Credits Assessment
Module: Advanced Games Console Projects Credits: 40 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Advanced Games Console Techniques Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Development Project Credits: 40 Assessment: Coursework
Practical
Elective modules
Module Credits Assessment
Module: Effective C++ Programming Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Machine Learning Algorithms And Heuristics Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Virtual And Augmented Reality Applications Credits: 20 Assessment: Coursework

Fees and funding

Home students

Our tuition fee for UK students starting full-time undergraduate study in 2024/25 is £9,250 per year. These fees are regulated by the UK government and are therefore subject to changes in government policy. During your placement year you will pay a reduced fee of £1,200.

If you are studying an undergraduate course, postgraduate pre-registration course or postgraduate research course over more than one academic year then your tuition fees may increase in subsequent years in line with Government regulations or UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) published fees. More information can be found in our terms and conditions under student fees regulations.

International students

Our tuition fee for International/EU students starting full-time study in 2024/25 is £16,655 per year. During your placement year you will pay a reduced fee of £1,200.

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Financial support for home/EU students

How tuition fees work, student loans and other financial support available.

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Additional course costs

This link allows you to view estimated costs associated with the main activities on specific courses. These are estimates and, as such, are only an indication of additional course costs. Actual costs can vary greatly depending on the choices you make during your course.

Additional costs for Computing courses (PDF, 197.9KB)

Legal information

Any offer of a place to study is subject to your acceptance of the University’s Terms and Conditions and Student Regulations.

Student success story
Muneer Fergiani

"I'm working on a VR version of our game PieceFall, which was released on the PlayStation store. This summer I went down to Sony's studio and played some unreleased and unannounced games so I could see examples of what good VR games could be."
Muneer Fergiani, BSc (Hons) Computer Science for Games


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