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The art institutes

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i am considering studying game art & design there. http://www.artinstitutes.edu/ i would like to know your opinion about that school, do you know any good or bad things about it?Anyone studied there?

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Keep in mind while reading this, my views only pertain to my own experience at The Art Institute of Vancouver - Burnaby, Visual & Game Programming course.

In short, the VGP program was treated as a second-class citizen behind the art and sound programs.

To elaborate, many of the courses were outdated. The material was highly compressed, so it was difficult to gain a base (in terms of knowledge) in the year and a half the program extends to. Some courses were falsely labeled, and were focused on art due to lack of instructors with programming knowledge. Essentially, I had about 4 courses where the instructor didn't know the course material he/she was teaching; luckily, this wasn't always the case, and those which did know their material were available to help in most courses. In the end, they only taught a working knowledge to mod existing engines (although practically, this is all that's required to get a job in the games industry); essentially devoid of lower level (working closer to hardware drivers) programming, and only briefly touched upon Object-Oriented Programming and Design Patterns. Most of my education gained tended to be through exploration or was self-taught. In the end, only five of us graduated (out of aprox. 40 who started); of those, one is working in a gas station, content to do nothing, and one is a fantastic programmer but has absolutely zero drive or passion to excel. So take from that experience what you will.

Of course, that's being a bit bitter. Plus, this is only from the perspective of one school's Programming course.

The Art Institutes is a collection of schools, so no two will be exactly alike; nonetheless, they are a great experience and do teach you some basic knowledge to prepare you for the career you're planning on entering. Just be sure to do plenty of your own stuff on the side to help solidify what you're learning, and to extend it beyond the scope of what's being taught. I'm unsure how well that applies to Art and Design, but to some extent that should apply universally regardless of material.

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