Critical Making

7.5 credits

Syllabus, Master's level, 5SD312

A revised version of the syllabus is available.
Education cycle
Second cycle
Main field(s) of study and in-depth level
Game Design A1N
Grading system
Fail (U), Pass (G), Pass with distinction (VG)
Finalised by
The Department Board, 4 November 2020
Responsible department
Department of Game Design

General provisions

The course is part of the Master's Programme in Game Design.

Entry requirements

A Bachelor's degree, equivalent to a Swedish Kandidatexamen, from an internationally recognised university. Proficiency in English equivalent to the Swedish upper secondary course English 6.

Learning outcomes

After completing the course, the student should be able to:

  • Identify theories and methods within the field of critical HCI, game design, and social justice,
  • Assess and compare theories and methods for practical use in game design,
  • Apply theories and methods in game design practice,
  • Develop an independent research project with a social justice goal of their choice.


This course provides an advanced introduction to critical game making. It familiarises students with interdisciplinary theories and methods from HCI, game design and social justice. A topical focus is put on three areas of critical work, race, gender, and ability. The students engage in a conversation with these themes through critical readings, discussion, and game design assignments. For their final project, students put these theories and methods into use in an independent research project with a social justice goal of their choice.


The course is given as a series of workshops, lectures and seminars.

The course is taught in English.


The course is graded on the basis of "Pass with Distinction", "Pass", or "Fail". The basis for the assessment is through assignments, active participation in seminars, and a written final assignment. The assessment is also based on the students' application of theories and methods in practice-based work, their oral performance in seminars such as participating in in-course playtesting and peer-critique sessions.

If there are special reasons for doing so, an examiner may make an exception from the method of assessment indicated and allow a student to be assessed by another method. An example of special reasons might be a certificate regarding special pedagogical support from the University's disability coordinator.

Uppsala University does not accept cheating or plagiarism. Suspected incidents of cheating or plagiarism are reported to the Vice-Chancellor, which may issue a formal warning to the student or suspend the student from studies for a certain period.

NOTE: Only completed courses can count toward a degree.