Ph.D. On Campus

Intelligent Games and Games Intelligence

University of York

48 months
23900 GBP/year
4650 GBP/year
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


The Intelligent Games and Games Intelligence course from University of York is the world's largest PhD research programme aimed at games. 


Our mission is to unlock the full potential of games research to contribute to wellbeing, prosperity, and science by training the next generation of leading researchers, designers and developers in games.

Based at the University of York, Queen Mary, Goldsmiths, and Essex, IGGI students undertake a four year PhD in impact-oriented games research, working closely with more than 80 partner organisations in the games industry and society. IGGI students advance games with research, software, patents, algorithms, data analytic techniques and creative works across a wide range of areas, from game AI and analytics to player experience and game design to games and play for health, education, or research.

Game Research that Matters

The Intelligent Games and Games Intelligence course from University of York embraces a diversity of research approaches and topics: from humanistic studies of how autobiographical games convey meaning or designerly work on using stage magic in game design to rigorous trials of games for mental health or creative play with machine learning and advancing AI techniques for real-time MOBA play. At the heart of IGGI’s approach to research are two principles:

  • fostering dialogue between research and practice: we engage game creators, players, and other stakeholders throughout our research to ensure our work is inclusive, responsible, and makes a positive impact on the real needs of people and organisations
  • fostering dialogue between engineering and human sciences: we believe innovative and responsible game research happens in interdisciplinary work that brings together perspectives from engineering (AI, data science, game-making) and humanities and behavioural sciences (HCI, psychology, design, game studies)

Programme Structure

  • Game Design: Students learn how to conceive, design, prototype and playtest their own games, be it for entertainment or a 'serious' purpose like health, education, or research.
  • Game Research & Data: Students learn various methods for empirically studying games and players, including standard HCI methods and data science techniques for gaining insights from big data sets.
  • Game Development & AI: Students learn how to develop game prototypes using standard industry game engines, explore novel interaction techniques and interfaces, and the state of AI applications in games, like AI opponents and collaborators, procedural content generation, or player modelling.
  • Impact & Engagement: Students learn how to engage industry, players, and other societal stakeholders early on in their research, how to conduct responsible research and innovation that is overall beneficial to human wellbeing, and how to present their work online, to the media, and industry.

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 48 months

Start dates & application deadlines


On Campus

Academic requirements

We are not aware of any academic requirements for this programme.

Other requirements

General requirements

Applicants normally hold a masters degree enabling them to do games research in their chosen research area (e.g. computer science, HCI, psychology, game design and development), although we do accept exceptional candidates with a fitting undergraduate degree. We also expect applicants to bring the requisite basic technical skills to succeed in our training modules in game design and development. Prior practical experience in making games is not required but a definite plus.

Tuition Fee

To alway see correct tuition fees
  • International

    23900 GBP/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 23900 GBP per year during 48 months.
  • National

    4650 GBP/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 4650 GBP per year during 48 months.
  • UK Part-time: £2,325
  • EU/International Part-time: £11,950

Living costs for York

646 - 1124 GBP /month
Living costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

Our partners

Intelligent Games and Games Intelligence
University of York


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