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TCID 391 Race and Identity in Video Games

This course explores the concept of race, racism, and identity in the games industry, games community, and game studies. Because of games' role in both reflecting and creating cultural, racial, and identity norms, they are a rich source for investigating the ways interactive and immersive technologies influence cultural and social perspectives. In this course, students explore topics through a lens of race such as the history and evolution of video games, values in play, avatar identity, visualizing racial characteristics, analyzing gaming communities, and interrogating racism in the game industry. Intersectionality is used to explore how race and racism impact digital and nondigital bodies. No prior programming knowledge is assumed.


Special information

Prerequisites: WRIT 131 AND WRIT 231 or Writing requirement fulfilled.
2 Undergraduate credits

Effective August 15, 2022 to present

Meets graduation requirements for

Learning outcomes


  • Students will be able to apply theoretical components of representation, intersectionality, race and racism, avatar creation, ethics, identity tourism, to the creation of characters in video games.
  • Students will be able to create characters with a particular race/ethnic/gender/sexuality/country of origin/etc positionality that is underrepresented in the gaming world and design them ethically and consistently.
  • Students will be able to describe and challenge the role of digitally raced bodies in the gaming industry and community.
  • Students will be able to identify and describe racism and toxicity in the game community.

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.

Spring 2023

Section Title Instructor
50 Race and Identity in Video Games Layne, Alexandra Marie Books Course details