All Pre-College Tracks will be taught online for Summer 2021.
Pre-College Summer Programs for 2021
Students in the Pre-College Program will get a feel for what it’s like to take college courses at DigiPen and learn what it takes to be successful in the game industry. During this four-week program in July 2021, mornings are dedicated to learning core concepts from our faculty-level instructors, and afternoons are spent in their project lab, where students get to immerse themselves in the roles of programmers, game designers, artists, music and sound designers.
Students receive grades for their Pre-College classes, plus a final transcript that can be included in their application to DigiPen. Any student who successfully completes the Pre-College Program and matriculates to DigiPen Institute of Technology within three years will receive a credit equal to the Pre-College Program tuition to apply toward their first-semester tuition as a freshman.
Participants must be at least 16, entering their Junior or Senior year of high school, or have graduated high school within the last 18 months. Computer Science students are expected to have successfully completed Algebra 2, and we recommend music students have some experience playing an instrument.
Students from outside the United States are welcome! There are no additional program prerequisites for international students, but please understand that all instruction will happen in English. To register for the Pre-College Program with an international address, please e-mail email@example.com.
For individual course descriptions and to register, see tabs below.
- July 6 – July 30 2021
- Monday through Friday
- 9:30 am – 4:30 pm (PST)
Cost: Starting at $2,650.00
- Each day, students will take 2 academic courses and participate in a project studio in the afternoons.
Students must have access to a computer as well as additional hardware and software. Some programs or courses may indicate additional technology requirements, and not all programs are Mac compatible.
- Windows PC or Mac computer
- Display with minimum resolution of 1024 x 768. While it is not mandatory, it is recommended to have a second monitor connected to the computer to extend the desktop. This allows the student to more easily follow what the instructor is demonstrating while concurrently being able to see the software environment that the student is working within.
- For artists only – Wacom Tablet OR iPad with Procreate for use for digital painting
- Headset with microphone
- Three-button mouse
- Broadband internet connection
- Current, major internet browser (Chrome, Firefox)
- Latest version of Adobe Reader
Due to COVID-19, our fall programs will remain online. We are offering a limited number of courses in-person. Visit our registration page for details.
To be a good game designer, you must understand the fundamental principles of game design, the computer science that goes into designing a video game, the art and animation production process, and the storytelling and character creation skills necessary to bring video games to life. Having strong knowledge with all technical and creative aspects of the game development process is important in order to create the type of engaging interactive experiences today’s players expect.
During this four week program, you will get to experience what life is like for DigiPen college students who are working to complete their Bachelor of Arts in Game Design. The students in this track will take three (3) core academic classes plus the game project lab that involves all of the students from all of the Pre-College tracks to work together to complete a game:
- GD: Principles of Game Design
- CS: Applied Computer Science for Designers (includes Lab)
- GAT: Interactive Narrative and Character Creation (includes Lab)
- GAM: Game Project Lab
Art & Animation
Even with all the amazing advancements in digital art tools, the key to success for production artists is still a strong visual development process and the foundational art skills to execute that process. This track prepares students for the rich and rewarding experience of being a production artist for video games, animation, and more. Within your Project Lab, students in the art track serve as the game team’s resident artist, developing characters, backgrounds, and other essential components for their game.
During this four-week-long program, you will get to experience what life is like for DigiPen college students who are working to complete their Bachelor of Fine Arts in Digital Art and Animation to become game artists. The students in this track take three (3) core academic classes plus the game project lab that involves all of the students from all of the Pre-College tracks to work together to complete a game:
- ART: Art Foundations
- ANI: Animation Techniques (with Lab)
- CG: Computer Graphics Tools (with Lab)
- GAM: Game Project Lab
Art supplies and materials (Please note that students registering after May 1, 2021, may not have their supplies delivered prior to the first day of class).
Additional Technical Requirements:
- Wacom Tablet OR iPad with Procreate for use for digital painting.
Programming software for today’s gamers requires a deep understanding of computer science, advanced mathematics, and physics. During this four week program, you will get to experience what life is like for DigiPen college students who are working to complete their Bachelor of Science in Computer Science.
The Pre-College students in this track will take three (3) core academic classes plus the game project lab that involves all of the students from all of the Pre-College tracks to work together to complete a game:
- CS: Applied Computer Science for Games
- MAT: Applied Math for Games (with Lab)
- PHY: Applied Physics for Games (with Lab)
- GAM: Game Project Lab
- There is no requirement for you to have any prior computer science knowledge but applicants are expected to have successfully completed Algebra 2.
Music and Sound Design
Audio professionals play an important role on any game production team. Whether composing the musical score that sets a game’s mood or recording the sound effects that give players moment-to-moment gameplay feedback, it’s a job that requires both musical knowledge and technical expertise. During this four week program, you will get to experience what student life is like for DigiPen college students who are studying to become audio professionals through DigiPen’s Bachelor of Music and Sound Design. By focusing on the theory, history, and techniques of music and sound design, students in this program gain an understanding of what elements make a video game’s soundtrack and sound effects a compelling experience.
The students in this track take three (3) core academic classes plus the game project lab that involves all of the students from all of the Pre-College tracks to work together to complete a game:
- MTM: Music Theory and Musicianship
- MHL: Music History and Literature (includes Lab)
- FMSD: Fundamentals of Music and Sound Design (includes Lab)
- GAM: Game Project Lab
- MIDI Controller
- While there is not an absolute requirement for you to have any prior musical training or experience, to get the most benefit from this program, it is recommended that you have some experience with playing a musical instrument.