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Old 03-15-2011, 04:16 PM   #1
Oathbreaker
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Post Future Game Programmer With Questions (UK Edition)

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Originally Posted by Carlin Mische View Post
First of all, I'd just like to thank you Tom. The resources you have provided at Sloperama have helped me immensely. I Have aspirations to one day program games for a living under a major employer. I just need a little help working out a path there and would like some advice.

I'm a Junior in highschool and I just recently decided that between a few things I was thinking about, that game programing will be the path I pursue. I've been doing some self teaching on the side, and i've been doing some research, and looking at some colleges.

From what I can tell, DePaul University looks amazing because of it's game related programs. But it's price at 30k a year is even more amazing. The rest of the schools I've been looking at that offer some programming degree, look pretty mediocre compared to DePaul.

I also have a pretty crappy GPA of about 3, if that makes any difference. So I don't think I'll be getting any scholarships or handouts. I think I can count on my parents to contribute about 20-30k to me for college. So, my question is what do you guys think about taking out some enormous loan and going to DePaul? What will it take for them to accept me? Do most programmers get a degree or do they just start on the bottom and work their way up?

Thanks, Carlin.
I will be in a similar position in 2 years. I'm 16 and just going into 6th form to do Maths, Physics, Chemistry and Computing, but planning to do a CS degree after that. Not sure what my GPA would be (i'm british ^^. Don't have GPA here. I am however getting A*s in Maths, Physics and chemistry, an A in Biology and a D in ICT (D for Distinction xD. ICT is a Btec, not GCSE), so should be quite high (probably about 4 or 5... what does it go up to?)).

Does anyone know any good unis for a CS degree in the UK? Also, does anyone know if any companys in leicestershire would take on a 16 year old for work experience? My 6th form head said I should try to get some. I know Python and a bit of C++.

Anyway, this post went a bit off-topic. @OP: Hope you get into a good uni .
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Last edited by Adrir : 03-17-2011 at 12:39 AM. Reason: Split Posts For Clarity
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Old 03-16-2011, 07:18 AM   #2
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Quote:
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Does anyone know any good unis for a CS degree in the UK?
Most CS degrees in the UK are "good". What area of Computer Science are you most interested in?

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Also, does anyone know if any companys in leicestershire would take on a 16 year old for work experience?
Work experience isn't a bad thing, but at your age those kinds of jobs tends to be offered by referral only.

If you are still being supported by your parents, I would reccomend focusing on your studies. AS/A2 Levels are far more challenging than GCSEs, and if you are a high flyer then this also gives you the opportunity to read around topics of interest. Perhaps, you could start making a few games since you already know some programming.
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Old 03-16-2011, 12:23 PM   #3
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The work experience you are referring is one of those one/two weeks periods isn't it?
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Old 03-16-2011, 03:57 PM   #4
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The work experience you are referring is one of those one/two weeks periods isn't it?

It would be anything up to around 8 weeks. As my GSCEs will be over and I won't have started on AS yet, i'd have around 8 weeks of holiday with nothing to do. Being able to get a good amount of voluntary work experience would probably help me when i'm looking for my first programming job later in life.

Also, @Adrir: I'm thinking of using UDK to create something soon.
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Old 03-17-2011, 12:37 AM   #5
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It would be anything up to around 8 weeks. As my GSCEs will be over and I won't have started on AS yet, i'd have around 8 weeks of holiday with nothing to do.
Have you considered the Google Summer of Code?

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Being able to get a good amount of voluntary work experience would probably help me when i'm looking for my first programming job later in life.
Personally, I don't think an employer would put much emphasis on two months of work experience you did years before you started looking for a job. That's why most universities offer work placement (internship, and co-op) programmes.

In all seriousness, if you're that passionate about programming you will proberbly use all that free time to make something cool over the summer anyway.
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Old 03-17-2011, 05:16 AM   #6
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You may find it pretty touch getting any programming work experience. The only people on Work Experience that I've ever seen at a Games company were as Testers.

From the companys viewpoint Testing is relatively safe, they get an extra person looking at the game and reporting bugs. If they're not very good at it, the worst thing that would happen is that they don't report any bugs.

Programming on the other hand is a whole new kettle of fish. Not only would it be very easy for you to introduce a subtle bug due to unfamiliarity with the existing code, but they would have to assign an experienced programmer to lead your through the code and review anything you've written.
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Old 03-18-2011, 08:03 AM   #7
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Have you considered the Google Summer of Code?



Personally, I don't think an employer would put much emphasis on two months of work experience you did years before you started looking for a job. That's why most universities offer work placement (internship, and co-op) programmes.

In all seriousness, if you're that passionate about programming you will proberbly use all that free time to make something cool over the summer anyway.
GSoC looks really good, but unfortunately you have to be 18+ . And I think I will just learn C++ more, and try to make a simple platformer in it.
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Old 05-18-2011, 10:46 PM   #8
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heh I know how that can be. Finding work is hard in the programming field without a huge resume, but I would highly consider freelancing (dont know if I can post direct links, ill check then show you what I use). Just speaking English is a huge advantage you will have, because so many programmers are foreign.

But yeah, I was sort of in the same boat, then I decided to freelance. It took a couple weeks to actually get something, but if you keep trying, you will! After a couple jobs and good reviews, it can be some good money for the actual working hours, plus you get a chance to meet people that know other people.
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Old 05-18-2011, 10:53 PM   #9
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the websites I use are www.freelancer.com and www.guru.com (there are others, but those 2 are my favorites lol)
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