Currently the program is only available for entrance during a student’s freshman year, as this is a program that students follow their 4 years of high school. Feel free to contact our guidance counselor Ms. Bing Thepsiri at NEHS to discuss your child’s enrollment in the program.
At the current time, interest is the only prerequisite to enter this program. However, it is strongly suggested that your student has a solid understanding of Algebra and basic computer skills.
What to Expect From the Academy
As a member of the Academy, students will get to know their classmates well as they move throughout the day to their general courses with each other. Teamwork is very important in the game design industry, so students will have several group assignments and projects to learn the foundations of teamwork. This means students will learn to work out differences, recognize and utilize team and individual strengths, learn to speak up for what they feel is right, and learn about the responsibility each member has in the team.
Sophomore Year – The second year of the program is known as Game Design. In this course, students will dive deeper into the process of design. The small samples from last year’s course will turn into very detailed discussions and projects. Students will use their experiences to create professional looking storyboards and design documents that go into extreme detail about the final outcome of a game. They will gain more experience with Maya to learn how to create game assets and animate game characters. They will get experience with a simple motion capture studio to animate their characters. Students will explore the history of storytelling and how this contributes to the design of a game. At the end of this year, students should have a complete understanding of the entire design process for a video game. A copy of the state approved standards can be found here: Game Design Standards
Junior Year – Career Practicum – Juniors will also have the opportunity to apply for a career practicum course. This course is through acceptance only. Students will be running their own game development company. They can either be working with a client or enter a game they make into a competition. Students will spend the first 9 weeks going through the whole design process for the game. After the design gets approval, they will spend the rest of the year developing the game using the Scrim Agile framework. Professionals from the industry will be brought in at different stages to give advice and critique what they have done. This is a great opportunity for students to get an overview of what it is like to actually work in an industry along with making connections with those currently in the industry. The faculty and admin of the academy will be looking for the “cream-of-the-crop” for this class. We are looking for those students that demonstrate leadership, a commitment to deadlines and providing the best possible product, able to work well in teams, and proven demonstration of responsibility.
Senior Year – The final year of this program is known as Multiple User Game and Simulation Programming. In this course, students will navigate even deeper down the rabbit hole of game development. They will polish up their skills in computer programming which could lead to certification of certain languages. Students will learn what it takes to create multiplayer games. They will learn about network and security to keep their games safe both online and off. At the end of this year, students will have a deeper understanding about what it truly takes to design and develop a complete video game for use. And at the end of this program, students will have the experience and portfolio to enter higher education, test for certifications in computer languages, or possibly even be hired by a game development company as a junior designer/developer.
After-School Program and Tutoring
After-School tutoring is offered Monday, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays until 4:00. If a student has technology issues at home that prevents them from completing assignments, they can attend the after school tutoring in order to complete the assignment and hand in with no late penalty assessed.