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385 U.S. colleges now offer computer and video game degrees, according to ESA

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According to a new report from the Entertainment Software Association, a record number of colleges and universities in the United States now offer computer and video game design programs or degrees. A total of 55 schools offer associate's degrees, 226 offer bachelor's degrees, 46 offer master's degrees, and four offer Ph.D's. This is an increase from the number of degrees and programs offered in 2012.

“Video games are the fastest growing, most dynamic form of entertainment in the word today,” said Michael D. Gallagher, president and CEO of ESA, the U.S. trade association representing computer and video game publishers.

“These students are preparing to join an industry that creates interactive software, innovative hardware, and ecosystems that spawn new business models and online communities, transforming consumer experiences, spurring technological advancements, and impacting important areas including education, healthcare, and business," he added. According to the report, this increase "underscores the growing demand to prepare middle and high school students in critical science, technology, engineering, and math fields.

Leading the nation is California with 72 schools offering video game-related courses and programs. Other leading states include New York with 26, Texas with 24, and Florida with 23. If you're interested in pursuing a degree in video games, the complete list of schools offering courses and degree programs can be found here. And the next time someone tries to downplay the importance of video games in our culture, just casually remind them that it's a $21 billion industry that spreads far beyond Call of Duty and other blockbuster shooters.

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Matt Liebl You can follow Senior News Editor Matt Liebl on Twitter @Matt_GZ. He likes games, sports, musicals, and his adorable dog, Wrigley. And his wife.
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