The British Sector Skills Council for the audiovisual industries has announced the establishment of a Kitemark seal of quality for UK-based instructional courses in the development of computer games. The Kitemark, a certificate of quality established by the British Standards Institution, was established in 1902 as a mark of official standards compliance.
The computer game course Kitemark will serve as official accreditation for employees trained in computer game-related programming and development courses. The Kitemark was established with input from the Entertainment and Leisure Software Publishers Association and the Independent Games Developers Association, as well as representatives from Activision, Codemasters, EA, Sony, and others.
"Over the years I have seen widely varied content within Computer Games Courses," said EA representative Richard Leinfellner. "With many students now taking games courses as an entry point into the industry it is important for us provide guidelines on the types of skills needed to be successful. Being involved in the course evaluation team provides an opportunity to do this. Students will benefit from by getting a firm grounding in the pure core disciplines such as computing, math, science and art with relevant games specific components woven in."
Courses will be evaluated on different factors depending on the discipline. Programming courses will be examined for programming languages and mathematics rigor; art evaluators will look at anatomy and figure drawing; and design courses will be vetted for understanding potential markets and emphasis on communication. The first successfully accredited courses will be announced in June 2006.