The Princeton Review chose the schools for its 2015 list based on a comprehensive survey it conducted in the 2014 academic year of administrators at 150 institutions offering video game design coursework and/or degrees.

The Princeton Review developed the survey with the assistance of an advisory board formed for this project in 2009. Advisory board members included faculty at top institutions offering game design courses and professionals at leading companies in the gaming industry. The survey, which has more than 50 questions, covers a wide range of topics, from academics and faculty credentials to graduates' employment and career achievements. Some of the survey questions asked of each school are below.

The selection and ranking of schools for the list was based on criteria that broadly covered the quality of the curriculum, faculty, facilities and infrastructure. The Princeton Review also factored in data it collected from the schools on their scholarships, financial aid, and career opportunities.


  • What game design-related courses do you offer for undergraduates?

  • The number of gaming-related courses available to students.

  • Whether the school hosts an annual gaming competition, showcase or symposium.

  • If your students have entered outside competitions and festivals have any placed or won?

  • What game design-relevant skills does your program teach?

  • Does your gaming program use a team-driven approach? If yes, in that team are students paired with other students from different disciplines?

  • Is it a requirement for students in your program to have created a functional game before graduating?

  • The number of research opportunities available to students.


  • What percentage of your total undergraduate gaming faculty have started, run or worked for a game studio?

  • How many gaming faculty members do you have?

  • How many departments do they represent?

  • Percentage of gaming faculty with PhDs (or terminal degree equivalent).

  • Does your faculty have funded research in game design?


  • What technologies or engines does your school utilize?

  • Does your school offer game labs for students to use?

  • Does your school offer a game library for students to use?


  • What career-related opportunities does your school offer to undergraduate gaming students?

  • For the most recent graduating class, what percentage of graduates have worked on a game that has shipped?

  • During the 2014 academic year, how many game companies visited your school for any of the following reasons: recruiting, lectures, seminars, demos, collaborations?

  • What percentage of graduates have taken a job in some aspect of game development at the time of or before graduating? What was their salary?