Game Programming

Game Programmers drive the game development process; creating the framework, functionality and interaction in the game. Regarded as the essential ingredient in the development process, game programmers are highly valued and continually in demand.

The course teaches students languages and technologies used in the games industry, including C++, C#, OpenGL, game engines as well as developing problem-solving skills. This program has been developed in response to industry needs and runs for two years, full-time.

Course Content

Stage One

The first year of the course is a foundation year, intended to provide students with advanced game programming skills. The course takes students through languages and technologies used heavily by the gaming industry, including C, C++, C#, OpenGL, game libraries and version controls as well as developing maths, problem solving, and practical programming proficiency.

Although the course takes a games approach, it is also suitable for anyone wanting to learn real-time application development skills which are highly sought after across all areas of programming and simulation.

Stage Two

In the second year the course covers specific algorithms and technologies used in game development and builds on the students core language skills. Students cover more advanced development techniques as well as learning how to develop using industry standard game engines.

By the end of the year students will have experience in 3D graphics, Artificial Intelligence, Networking, Physics & Collision, Console Hardware, Profiling, and Managing medium to large scale software projects. Students focus on developing their skills in all aspects of C++ programming before focusing on specialised areas, and developing across multiple platforms.

Major Game Project

In second year of this course game programming students will work together with game design and game art students in development teams to design and produce a playable game. This project closely mirrors the real-world production cycle in an industry development studio, covering the entire process from pitching the game idea, through writing game design documents, evaluating technical requirements, managing workload, meeting deadlines, delivering commercial quality artwork and animation, bug-fixing, QA testing and market analysis of the game.

Subjects you will study

Stage One

  • Work Health and Safety
  • Introduction to C#
  • Maths for Games
  • Introduction to C++
  • Code Design and Data Structures
  • Artificial Intelligence for Games
  • User Interface Programming
  • Cross-Platform Development
  • Production Planning
  • Production
  • Games Business Studies

Stage Two

  • Physics for Games
  • Computer Graphics
  • Complex Game Systems
  • Virtual and Extended Realities
  • Proof of Concept
  • Major Production
  • Online Professional Portfolio

Software You Will USe

Students utilize industry standard software and resources such as:

  • Visual Studio — Programming in C, C++ and C#
  • Open GL — Low-level computer graphics programming
  • Game Engines — Unity and Unreal Engine
  • Perforce or Git — Collaborative version control tools
  • Open-source Libraries — Public code-bases commonly used throughout programming industries

Your Career Opportunities

  • Game engine programmer
  • Physics engine programme
  • Graphics engine programmer
  • Artificial intelligence programmer
  • Sound programmer
  • Gameplay programmer
  • Software engineer
  • UI programmer
  • Input programmer

A range of game programming roles within game development including Gameplay Programmer, Network Engineer, Graphics-Shader Developer, 3D Game Engine Programmer, Tools Developer and many others.

Graduates would also use these skills in a range of similar roles within games-based simulation and training as well as general software development roles.

Entry Requirements

Entry for this course is based on:

  1. Interview - In the interview we are assessing your suitability for the course including any specific requirements you may have.
  2. Portfolio - we are looking for evidence of creativity which is demonstrated through a collection of works in a medium of your choosing.
  3. Copy of your Year 12 Certificate OR by achieving an Exit Level 3 score within the Australian Core Skills Framework assessments in reading and numeracy.

An Exit Level 3 score within the Australian Core Skills Framework assessments in reading and numeracy will show that you have the capability to be successful in this course. AIE can assist you with this assessment process if required and results will be reported to you as soon as practicable. As per the Department of Education and Training guidelines, assessment results are also available to the Department Secretary on request.

For more information please see our interview and portfolio page

State Funding

Students in Victoria and South Australia may be eligible for government funding for some of this course. Please refer to the following webpages:

Our Fees

Maximum tuition fees for the intake commencing February and July 2023

Game Programming Tuition Fee
Year 1 CUA51020 Diploma of Screen and Media (2023) $16,750
delivered in conjunction with
ICT50220 Diploma of Information Technology (2023) $16,150
Year 2 10702NAT Advanced Diploma of Professional Game Development (2024) $17,300
Total Tuition Fee $50,200

The VET Student Loans program allows eligible students enrolled in AIE's approved Diploma, Advanced Diploma and Graduate Diploma courses to defer part of the cost of their tuition fees. Courses are subject to maximum loan caps and students will be required to pay any fee over and above that cap. For more information visit our VET Student Loans page.

Please note:

  • VET Student Loans will not be approved for students who do not meet eligibility requirements.
  • A VET student loan gives rise to a HELP debt that continues to be a debt due to the Commonwealth until it is repaid.
  • On successful completion of stage 1, students will be awarded recognition of prior learning or credit transfer towards Stage 2 of the Advanced Diploma.

For more information on our tuition fees, please visit our FEES page

To see our international fees, please visit our FEES page

Bachelor of Game Development

The Academy of Interactive Entertainment Ltd (AIE) has launched AIE Institute, an industry-leading higher education provider for Australia’s future game artists, designers and programmers.

AIE Graduates from the Advanced Diploma of Professional Game Development 10702NAT can continue their studies into AIE Institute's Bachelor of Game Development which has majors in game art, game design and game programming.



Students can study this program in the following modes:

Study Mode Campus Day and times Hours per week
Face to Face AIE Campus in Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra or Adelaide Week days, 9am to 5pm 20 hours (full-time)
Online Day-time AIE Online Campus Week days, 9am to 5pm AEST 20 hours (full-time)
Online Evenings AIE Online Campus Week nights, 5pm to 9pm AEST 20 hours (full-time)
Online Part-time AIE Online Campus Week nights, 5pm to 9pm AEST Flexible, between 4 - 20 hours


This two-year, full-time program has been developed with industry and is delivered through the following qualifications:
Game Programming Cricos
Year 1 CUA51020 Diploma of Screen and Media 106064C
delivered in conjunction with
ICT50220 Diploma of Information Technology 106066A
Year 2 10702NAT Advanced Diploma of Professional Game Development 098405B

Meet The Teachers

Meet the Teachers | Game Programming

Student Work

Student Work | Game Programming

Student Work

Alumni Work | Game Programming

Upcoming Events

Industry Experience Day