Vic looks to spark computer gaming

The Victorian government has announced a pilot program for computer game development courses.Fifteen Victorian teachers and trainers involved in computer game development courses will have access to a professional development program called Game Plan: Game On.

The Victorian government has announced a pilot program for computer game development courses.

Fifteen Victorian teachers and trainers involved in computer game development courses will have access to a professional development program called Game Plan: Game On.

Minister for Information and Communication Technology Marsha Thomson, said the program is "the government's blueprint for growing the Victorian computer game industry" and helping educators keep up with the latest industry developments and business trends.

"I'm delighted to announce today that we've contracted the Game Developer's Association of Australia (GDAA) to research, develop and implement a professional development program for teachers and trainers of computer game courses," said Thomson.

Thomson said they are hoping to develop a professional development model for game teachers that could be used as a benchmark for other emerging industry sectors.

"The Australian computer game industry currently employs over 700 people and exports more than AU$100 million in products and services annually," Thomson said.

She added that "Victorian game companies represent more than half the Australian industry, but to consolidate our position as a major global player we need to ensure that the next generation of students entering the industry are up-to-date with developments in the games industry."

The AU$80,000 pilot program will include a three day program with guest speakers from the GDAA's membership list, a research with games teachers and site visits to development studios.

The Victorian government has previously put up a computer game development kit program in which free access was granted to Sony PS2 development kits -- and more recently Xbox development kits -- to develop demonstration games on these platforms.

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