Friday, 20 January 2012

NC Computer Games Development

The fourth meeting of the QDT for the new National Certificate (NC) in Computer Games Development was held yesterday afternoon in the SQA offices in Glasgow.

The lead developer, Frank Duffy of Motherwell College, presented a draft framework to the meeting. In fact, Frank presented two frameworks: one for a "technical" NC and one for a "creative" NC. He has spent a lot of time since the last QDT meeting in discussion with various individuals and organisations, such as representatives of universities, and came to the conclusion that a single framework would not meet their needs. He proposed two NC awards at SCQF Level 6:
  1. NC Computer Games: Software Development
  2. NC Computer Games: Animation.
We liked this, and plan to proceed on this basis. Seperating the areas means that each award can focus on specific skills. For example, the proposed Software Development award will have programming and mathematics as mandatory units.

We also had an interesting discussion about the optional topics in each award, which could include topics such as enterprise, AI, UI design and games theory. We plan to include Highers in the optional sections of each award. For example, the Animation award will include Art at Higher Level; the Software Development award will include Computing and Mathematics at Higher Level.

We also had good discussions around STEM, core skills and Curriculum for Excellence.

We now need to finalise the frameworks and get down to unit writing, before organising a validation event, which I hope will be held sometime in April or May. We will carry out a public consultation on the draft frameworks once they are firmed-up. Watch this space.

Both of these new qualifications will be available to centres from August. Contact Hilary if you want more information about this development or contact Frank if you want to know more about how the qualifications are shaping up.

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