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Game Programmer Apprenticeship Level 7

Game Programmers / Developers create dependable and efficient software within the constraints of real-time graphical environments running on contemporary gaming platforms. Individuals provide their expertise in a range of areas including gameplay mechanics, asset pipelines, and custom technologies to keep the organisation at the forefront of the industry.

Apprentices will build on their existing core knowledge of games development and delve into both game software programming and game technology programming. With diversity and technology at its heart, a Kaplan Game Programmer apprenticeship is anything but standard.

As well as developing technical skills using a range of core technologies and platforms, we support our learners with the ability to lead the design and development of bespoke systems and program reliable, efficient software to drive business change.

Ideal for more experienced programmers who interact with a community of programmers, providing technical authority and insight to Game Programmers, Designers, Producers, Artists, Animators, or Audio Engineers. They may also work with stakeholders such as publishers, platform holders, Producers, and Technical Directors.

This apprenticeship will benefit those who work within a video games development organisation. Individuals on this programme will typically be employed as a Developer Relations Engineer, Game Programmer, Gameplay Engineer, Gameplay Programmer, Mobile Game Developer, Rendering / Graphics Engineer, or Software Development Engineer

An apprentice’s journey doesn’t end when their apprenticeship has finished. Although they will be fully competent in their role, they can continue their professional development by keeping up to date with the latest best practices and standards of the industry.

To do this apprenticeship you must have at least a grade of 4/C GCSE (or equivalent) in Maths and English. If you don’t have this level of Maths and English, Kaplan offers free resources and support to make sure you have a strong understanding of the subjects by the end of your apprenticeship.

Employers could also ask you to have one of the following:

  • A minimum Level 4 qualification in a similar, technical subject. With an active interest in programming, having had informal learning in any programming language (preferably C++) OR
  • A non-technical bachelor’s degree with a minimum of one year’s working experience in a technical role. With an active interest in programming, having had informal learning in any programming language (preferably C++) OR
  • A technical bachelor’s degree with some elements of programming
  • Candidates with relevant working experience, but without formal academic qualifications, may also be considered.

Individuals will also be required to complete an entry test, checking their ability to understand programming in C++, logic, and Maths.


24 months with Gateway at 18 months

Costs / funding

Levy payer
Non levy payer

Qualifications received

Game Programmer Level 7 apprenticeship

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About the programme

Specialist pathways

In addition to gaining broad core knowledge that supports them in their daily role, individuals on this apprenticeship will delve into two specialisms: game software programming and game technology programming.

Optimise your team’s workflows

The Game Programmer apprenticeship will help your people better understand the tools, technologies, systems, and methodologies to reduce performance bottlenecks, optimise resources, fix complex problems, manage stakeholders, and more.

Build on high demand skills

Apprentices on this programme will develop their C++ skills alongside others, to increase efficiency, productivity, and confidence in their daily duties.

Supported by an industry experienced Talent Coach

Each learner has regular 1:1 contact and progress reviews to keep them on track, review their portfolio, and get them fully prepared for their End Point Assessment.

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Training modules

Our Game Programmer apprenticeship integrates 11 modules of technical training with work-based projects. This ensures that learning and skills are directly applied to the apprentice’s role, and maximises the time used as part of off-the-job training. Individuals will gain core knowledge and specific technical training across both game software programming and game technology programming, to allow them to pursue their preferred area.

For each module, learners benefit from attending small, scheduled Live Online classes taught by a subject matter specialist, combined with additional online learning that can be completed at their own pace. Each of our live classes are interactive and involve lots of practical discussion, giving learners quality time both with tutors and industry peers to spark new ideas and get new perspectives. Learners get practical lab time to hone their skills and learn from each other, as well as their tutor.

Game Programming 101

This module introduces learners to programming in C++. It will cover:

  • System set ups and compiling their first programme
  • The basics and importance of C++ versus other computer languages
  • Practical implementation of variables and structures
  • Theoretical and practical exercises of pointers and references
  • Variables, functions, structures, and semantics.
Game Programming

In this unit, apprentices will build on their Programming 101 knowledge and gain a deeper understanding of the C++ language. It will cover:

  • Theoretical and practical implementations of basic code and code specific to making games
  • Delivery of basic game logic
  • Code flow
  • Game loop flow
  • Object-oriented code
  • Memory management.
Game Theory

In this module, individuals will understand how their role provides technical insight across creative disciplines and communicates technical constraints or opportunities. In the industry, they could be working with Game Programmers, Designers, Producers, Artists, Animators, Audio Engineers, QA Staff, Project Managers, Analysts, Community Managers, or Marketing. It will cover:

  • How to think and act about games as a media format
  • How to interpret games as a product of entertainment, and how to work with them professionally.
Game Data Algorithms

This unit builds on the common computer structures used in game programming. It will cover:

  • Areas of use and the relevant advantages or disadvantages
  • Useful algorithms for game programming
  • Applications for different data structures
  • Linked lists, arrays, trees, graphs, and hash tables
  • Search and sorting.
Game Engine Theory

In this unit, the apprentice will get to know what a game engine consists of. It will cover:

  • The systems and modules that modern game engines consist of and how production teams use them
  • Concepts of a game engine and why they are needed
  • Modules that define a game engine.
Design Patterns

This module provides an understanding of design patterns in game development and how they are used to remedy issues. It will cover:

  • Knowledge of design patterns and how they can be used to streamline game programming
  • How programmers can develop and adapt to the needs of individual problems
  • Common problems in game programming
  • Choice of suitable design patterns and how these can be further developed.
Artificial Intelligence

Apprentices will understand what game AI is and how different aspects are used to create an entertaining experience for the user. It will cover:

  • Learning, testing, and implementing AI behaviour for projects and in separate applications
  • Basic AI behaviours
  • The difference between game AI and other types of AI
  • Implementation and testing of bespoke-created AI structures.
Advanced Game Programming

In this module, the learner will understand how to put together multiple components and make them work in a simple game application. It will cover:

  • C++ libraries as a practical view on threading
  • Creation of own libraries for reuse
  • Use of third-party libraries for graphic design
  • Parallel programming
  • Basic steps for creating a real-time game in C++.
Practical Procedural Generation

This unit gives apprentices the knowledge to know what makes up procedural technologies. It will cover:

  • Making procedural technologies to implement in applications and in-game projects
  • Practising and creating a procedural world
  • Theories for creating a realistic procedural generated terrain with objects
  • Create and implement a procedural generated AI.
Game Scripts

This module provides apprentices with an in-depth knowledge of scripting and the importance of the scripting interface. It will cover:

  • Integrating scripting into a game and the possibilities of dynamic scripting
  • Scripting with common script languages
  • Script language integration
  • Structure of game engine
  • Scripting with node trees.
Teamwork and Communication

In this final module, individuals will better understand how their role fits within a team and how to interact with their colleagues. It will cover:

  • Giving and receiving feedback from teammates
  • Team dynamics
  • Communication
  • Teamwork
  • Feedback sessions.
Optional online development sessions

Our Game Programmer Apprenticeship programme also includes optional online development sessions. These interactive sessions focus on key Skills and Behaviours that will benefit your learners' development. For more information, please get in touch.

date_range Timetables

Programmes will be running regularly throughout the year once this apprenticeship has launched. Get in touch today for more information.

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Why choose Kaplan?

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Exclusive partnership

We have exclusively partnered with industry giants, Into Games and The Game Assembly (TGA), leveraging our joint expertise. TGA are one of the best schools in the world for game development and design, and Kaplan is the first training provider to deliver this apprenticeship.

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Design and develop bespoke systems

Apprentices will enhance their existing skills, including C++, to ensure they can lead projects and manage teams tailored to the challenges and constraints of your organisation. They will be more empowered to make better decisions for the business and end-users alike.

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Flexible learning

Learners attend scheduled, interactive Live Online classes involving lots of practical discussion and application, and combine this with additional online learning that can be completed at their own pace.

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Expert teaching

Our tutors are all subject matter experts, with real world experience, and teach small cohort groups of like minded learners.

Support for employers:
  • Named account director as your key point of contact
  • Recruitment service to help you hire an apprentice for a new vacancy
  • Transparency throughout the application and onboarding process for your learners
  • Named tutor and talent coaches, often a single contact
  • Accurate, timely and accessible tracking for each learner
  • Line Manager visibility of your learner’s portfolio dashboards
Support for learners:
  • Tutor contact via email outside of scheduled classes
  • Regular 1:1 contact and progress reviews with a named, industry experienced talent coach to keep them on track, review their portfolio and get them fully prepared for their End Point Assessment.
  • Peer to peer contacts from across the industry as part of a small cohort - creating opportunities to spark new ideas and get new perspectives
  • Integrated learning system with everything in one place. Access all online learning, track your progress, capture off-the-job activity and hours, manage and capture progress reviews, upload evidence, as well as communication, and leave messages for each other with their Talent Coach
  • Interactive lab environment to practise and put learning to the test
  • Student Service support available 362 days a year

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