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TCID 381 Video Game Culture

This course focuses on the myriad of cultures that surround video games, the largest entertainment industry and a powerful, influential social medium. Because of games' role in both reflecting and creating cultural norms, they are a rich source for investigating the ways interactive and immersive technologies influence cultural and social perspectives. In this course, students will learn the history and evolution of video games, explore values in play, analyze gaming communities, and discover ways to think and interrogate the games industry through a critical lens. This course is part of the Game Studies Minor core.

Special information

Note: Formerly known as MDST 381.
4 Undergraduate credits

Effective May 5, 2021 to present

Meets graduation requirements for

Learning outcomes


  • Students will know how games have co-evolved alongside technology as a powerful socio-cultural influence
  • Students will understand important elements in games community related to diversity, racism, sexism, classism, and homophobia
  • Students will understand how the immersive and interactive qualities of video games create draw and pull for players
  • Students will understand how video game communities function, including but not limited to game journalism, forums, guilds, blogs, podcasts, and walkthroughs
  • Students will know the important topics faced by the video game community throughout its existence
  • Students will be able to demonstrate the overlaps between game culture and other cultures surrounding technologies and STEM fields

Minnesota Transfer Curriculum

Goal 7: Human Diversity

  • Understand the development of and the changing meanings of group identities in the United States' history and culture.
  • Demonstrate an awareness of the individual and institutional dynamics of unequal power relations between groups in contemporary society.
  • Analyze their own attitudes, behaviors, concepts and beliefs regarding diversity, racism, and bigotry.
  • Describe and discuss the experience and contributions (political, social, economic, etc.) of the many groups that shape American society and culture, in particular those groups that have suffered discrimination and exclusion.
  • Demonstrate communication skills necessary for living and working effectively in a society with great population diversity.