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Industry preference - MSc or working experience


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#1 Etus   Members   -  Reputation: 174

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 01:47 AM

Hello everyone,

My name is Yuval Sarna, 26 years old. I'm currently pursuing a BSc in Computer Science from Tel-Aviv University. In about 6 months I'm going to finish my degree, and I'm thinking about which path I should take.

I'm thinking about moving abroad in order to work in the gaming industry. My main interest is Real-Time 3D Engine development, and I'm not sure what should I do.

I already have some experience in this field from personal projects I did a few years ago and also from my military service(compulsory in Israel).

I can either start pursuing a MSc in Computer Science with Computer Graphics subject as my thesis, or start working in a semi-related company. I can work in Medical Companies who produce 3D simulations for doctors training.

What is the preference of the industry, and what should help me land a job?
2 years experience in a medical company as I mentioned, or should I spend the next 2 years studying for a MSc?

Many thanks and any help would be appreciated.
Yuval



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#2 ambershee   Members   -  Reputation: 528

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 03:17 AM

Real world development experience is significantly more valuable than a piece of paper.



#3 fir   Members   -  Reputation: -456

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 03:40 AM

I would advise studying, rest of your life you will be working probably at some companies and will not have such easy opportunity to study



#4 ambershee   Members   -  Reputation: 528

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 05:32 AM

I disagree. If you're working in this kind of field you never stop studying - R&D is a critical process in practical software engineering. Following a master's degree program is something you should do if you are passionate about a particular field, but it will not rival what you'll learn within a few months in an industrial environment.


Edited by ambershee, 24 January 2014 - 05:33 AM.


#5 Tom Sloper   Moderators   -  Reputation: 10160

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 09:09 AM


What is the preference of the industry, and what should help me land a job?
2 years experience in a medical company as I mentioned, or should I spend the next 2 years studying for a MSc?

 

As I replied at gamecareerguide, most game companies won't care that you have a masters degree, and will be much more impressed with the work experience. However, if later in life you want to teach, having the masters degree would be great.


-- Tom Sloper
Sloperama Productions
Making games fun and getting them done.
www.sloperama.com

Please do not PM me. My email address is easy to find, but note that I do not give private advice.

#6 frob   Moderators   -  Reputation: 22732

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 02:47 PM

This is a fun one.

 

It depends on the subject of the masters degree.  Some masters programs are coursework only, others require research, and a few require at least one published research paper.

 

A masters degree offers the opportunity for deeper learning on specific topics and usually includes education on a few cutting-edge techniques. What those topics are is important. Someone who focused on CHI might have some valuable insights in user interfaces. Someone with a networking thesis could be valuable for online games both on the client and server side. Degree programs that focused on graphics, animation, computational math, databases, and various other topics could also prove extremely valuable.

 

If the studio has a specific need for a topic and the recent graduate has just published a paper on precisely the topic you need, there is an obvious direct value in the short term.

 

In general terms I consider a master's degree roughly equivalent to a year's worth of work experience, with some slight variations depending on how the topics that were studied relate to the industry generally and the immediate needs specifically. Someone who focused on graphics, animation, and networking is likely going to be seen more favorably to someone who studied, say, both compiler theory and bioinformatics. 


Check out my book, Game Development with Unity, aimed at beginners who want to build fun games fast.

Also check out my personal website at bryanwagstaff.com, where I write about assorted stuff.


#7 fir   Members   -  Reputation: -456

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 04:22 PM

 

In general terms I consider a master's degree roughly equivalent to a year's worth of work experience, with some slight variations depending on how the topics that were studied relate to the industry generally and the immediate needs specifically. Someone who focused on graphics, animation, and networking is likely going to be seen more favorably to someone who studied, say, both compiler theory and bioinformatics. 

 

one year or 5 years? (weak english i do not understood)

I would say years of experience at the university is roughly equivalent to same years of experience at work place - this is my experience: I was

not studying programming and it take me about five years to get equal (in knowledge etc) with people who took this 5 years at engineering school



#8 Tom Sloper   Moderators   -  Reputation: 10160

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 05:53 PM


one year or 5 years? (weak english i do not understood)
it take me about five years to get equal (in knowledge etc) with people who took this 5 years at engineering school

 

The first four years is given as a requirement -- to get the masters degree might take an extra one or two years. So he meant "one year," but he said it was roughly equivalent to one year of professional experience. We generally expect someone to have spent four years getting the education, then some time to build a portfolio, before getting any professional experience.


-- Tom Sloper
Sloperama Productions
Making games fun and getting them done.
www.sloperama.com

Please do not PM me. My email address is easy to find, but note that I do not give private advice.




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