Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Game Authoring I on SMC Main Campus

I find it interesting that Professor David Javelosa's Entertainment Technology course, ET 13 Game Authoring I, is being offered on Santa Monica College's main campus. Rather than be housed at the Academy of Entertainment and Technology (AET) satellite campus, this vocational course is being taught in room B259 of the business building. The Academy was granted educational center status by the California Postsecondary Education Commission in order to teach entertainment technology vocational courses with the intent of offering occupational certificates and immediate employment for its graduates. AET additionally received massive funding for computers and related equipment for both its classrooms and computer lab. ET 13 has been traditionally taught in either AET rooms 106 or 108 where students could have access to these state of the art computers. While the AET students enjoyed these luxuries, the rest of the SMC students struggled with older computer equipment.

AET has recently once again received new computers in its computer lab. AET Dean Katharine Muller makes it a point that their sacrosanct computer lab is only accessible to a privileged few students at SMC who meet stringent criteria with select classes. This causes a very empty computer lab with a handful of students. Meanwhile, the main campus suffers from long lines and waiting lists for students eager for limited computer space at such labs as Cayton and the business building.

So, why further tax the limited business school resources and offer the ET 13 course there? Is it because AET can't meet its enrollment figures on its satellite campus? The last two days at school, many colorful flyers were on the Academy walls, advertising students to join the classes before they were cancelled due to low enrollment.

As we mentioned in "The Decline of AET's Entertainment Technology Courses" and "How AET Manipulates its Curriculum & Certificates, " ET 13 has been steadily losing enrollment with diminishing section offerings over the last few years. One of the tricks SMC pulled out of its sleeve was to change the name of the course to Game Authoring I. You can view the screenshot comparison HERE.

There was a bright yellow flyer at AET yesterday advertising the ET 13 course. Two points of interest caught my eye. First, the fact that the course was being offered on main campus. Second, that it was called "ET 13 Game Prototyping in GameMaker 6.1." Game Authoring I was nowhere to be found on the flyer. Perhaps this will be the new name for the same old thing next semester, if it is offered at all. Meanwhile, all those expensive AET computers sit idle.

-- Des Manttari,
Phoenix Genesis

(c) 2006: Phoenix Genesis/MBS LP

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