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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What type of degree will I earn?

Full-time students at the Academy of Interactive Entertainment (AIE) earn an Advanced Diploma of Professional Game Development, specializing in Game Programming or Game Art & Animation, OR an Advanced Diploma of Screen and Media, specializing in 3D Animation & VFX for Film

Are you accredited?

  • The AIE Seattle campus is accredited by the Commission of the Council on Occupational Education.
    Council on Occupational Education, 7840 Roswell Road, Building 300, Suite 325, Atlanta, GA 30350, Telephone: 770-396-3898 / FAX: 770-396-3790 www.council.org
  • The AIE Lafayette campus is accredited by the Commission of the Council on Occupational Education.
    Council on Occupational Education, 7840 Roswell Road, Building 300, Suite 325, Atlanta, GA 30350, Telephone: 770-396-3898 / FAX: 770-396-3790 www.council.org
  • The AIE Lafayette campus is authorized by the Louisiana Board of Regents for Higher Education
  • All Academy of Interactive Entertainment (AIE) certificate and diploma programs are nationally accredited and recognized through the Australian Qualifications Framework, which is based on industry skill standards. 

Where are you located?

Our Seattle campus is located in the heart of the city and housing options are listed in the Seattle Housing Resources. You might find such tools as Craigslist helpful in locating an apartment. Areas to consider include Ballard, Queen Anne, U District, Belltown, Capitol Hill and Fremont. We suggest you use local transit schedules via metro.kingcounty.gov to gauge the commute between AIE and potential housing

Our Lafayette campus is located in the Louisiana Immersive Technologies Enterprise (LITE) building, on the University of Louisiana’s Lafayette campus.

For more information, visit the campus pages: Seattle or LafayetteOur Australian campuses are located in Sydney, Canberra, Adelaide and Melbourne. You can find out more about our Australian campuses at www.aie.edu.au.

Will I be employable?

AIE cannot guarantee job placement, but creates opportunities for students to interact with industry professionals through our advisory committee, guest speakers and local professional organizations such as the International Game Developers Association (IGDA). Students are encouraged to set up internships and complete the program with a show reel and portfolio of their work. An overview of graduate destinations can be found HERE.

What makes AIE different?

The AIE curriculum is based on industry skill standards. We teach the students the skills that the interactive media industry has defined as essential. The curriculum is taught by experienced instructors who have “been there and done that.” Our history stretches back to 1996 and through the years we have developed strong industry connections with many notable companies around the world. Read more about what makes AIE different and why you should study with us by clicking HERE

What is your application process like and how can I apply?

If you missed the application process, you can review the process and download your application HERE. Because enrollment in our programs is first-come, first-served, you are encouraged to apply at the next available priority application deadline. Pay careful attention to the application materials and portfolio requirements for the program you are applying for, since incomplete applications will not be reviewed until the next application deadline after they are completed. Application deadlines may be cancelled if our seats are filled, so we recommend applying early!

If you have questions about the application process or what you can do to prepare yourself for studying at AIE, contact uscampus@aie.edu.au 

Do you cap enrollment?

Yes, AIE does cap enrollment for its courses. We seek to ensure that all of our students receive a quality education which means keeping our class sizes small. Students seeking to enroll after we reach our cap will be put on a waiting list.

What programs/software do you use for art and programming?

  • The programs we use change depending on the demands of the interactive media industry. If the tools change then our curriculum must change in order to stay in tune with the industry we are preparing students to enter.
  • Programming Students utilize industry standard languages and tools such as: Visual Studio (C, C++ and C#), Open GL, Unity, UDK (Unreal), Perforce, Python, GITHUB.
  • 3D Animation & VFX students utilize industry standard software and resources such as: Maya, ZBrush, Photoshop, After Effects, Nuke and Premiere.

Do you accept the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)?

  • The Lafayette campus is not accepting the FAFSA at this time. Check back to this website for updates.
  • The Seattle campus accepts FAFSA. The Federal School code for the Seattle campus is: 04223600.

Do you offer any scholarships?

Louisiana residents may qualify for Workforce Investment Act (WIA) and National Emergency Grant (NEG) because AIE is an approved training partner. Please click HERE for more information regarding WIA and NEG. AIE scholarship information can be found HERE, please check this link frequently for updates. 

Do you accept international students?

Yes, we can accept international students who can provide proof of work or student visa and meet the other entry requirements. Contact uscampus@aie.edu.au with further questions.

What type of housing options do you have for incoming students?

Our Lafayette students may stay at the dorms located on the University of Louisiana’s Lafayette campus. Our partnership with them allows students to enjoy easy access to our campus in the LITE Center, while having the traditional dorm experience. Housing is first-come, first-served, so apply early if you want it! Visit housing.louisiana.edu for more information.

Our Seattle campus is located in the heart of the city, so does not currently offer any housing options. You might find such tools as Craig’s List helpful in locating an apartment. Areas to consider include Ballard, Queen Anne, U District, Belltown, Capitol Hill and Fremont. We suggest you use the local transit schedules metro.kingcounty.gov to gauge how quickly you can get to and from AIE from potential housing.

Can I visit your campus or take a tour?

Sure! We check the Coming Events sidebar link for upcoming Open Houses, Interactive Experience Days and other campus events. If you can’t make one of those events, contact uscampus@aie.edu.au to arrange a date and time.

Is it possible, or recommended, for students to get a job while in school?

Absolutely, we encourage all of our students to have a job while attending AIE. Many of our students work in the same area as our campus, including places like The Apple Store and Starbucks, or even game testing at various game studios. Second year students should seek internships and look for ways to apply what they have learned in their first year toward industry projects. Connecting with faculty and staff, the advisory committee, guest speakers and industry trade organizations such as IGDA can all point to potential internship opportunities.

What will my class schedule look like? Do I need to worry about getting into all my classes?

  • Students at AIE enjoy a set schedule each year. They will not need to worry about signing up for classes or be concerned about if they will get into the classes they need to graduate. AIE students are in class for 20 hours per week.
  • Students are either in class Monday and Tuesday from 9:00 AM – 6 PM and Wednesday from 9 AM-1:00 PM OR Wednesday from 2:00 PM- 6 PM and Thursday and Friday from 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM. We usually have industry professionals in as guest speakers at 1:00 PM on Wednesday afternoons.

What type of education model does AIE use?

Classes are taught on a studio model, emulating, in so far as possible, the industry workplace environment, with project-based assessment against industry skills standards and criteria. Learning and practice are integrated and take place in the same space, so transitions between theory and practice are unhindered.

I am still in high school, what can I do to prepare myself or AIE?

  • Great question! You should take one (or more) of our Summer Camps. Students use industry tools to either create a video game or animation. Click HERE for more information, or to sign up.
  • Also review what is expected in the application portfolio for the program you will be applying for and start compiling your best work for submission by clicking HERE.

Can I transfer credits to AIE?

AIE will accept some non-core courses from regionally accredited institutions. Students are not allowed to transfer upper divisional units or units that are core courses (especially production courses.) You may also ask to be tested or have a portfolio review for prior learning. See the Prior Learning Assessment section of the handbook for the appropriate campus.

Can I take individual classes?

The Seattle Campus does not presently offer stand-alone classes.

My question has not been answered on here. What do I do?

Ask us at uscampus@aie.edu.au! We will usually get back to you within one business day.