Certificate Track in Transformative Game Design

The words "Certificate: Transformative Game Design" with an abstract watercolour image

The Transformative Play Initiative at Uppsala University’s Department of Game Design is offering four (4) freestanding advanced-level courses in Autumn 2023-Spring 2024.

These courses focus on the applied use of analog role-playing games as vehicles for personal and social change, whether facilitated in-person or in online environments. The classes are online, half-time freestanding courses.

Anyone with a Bachelor’s degree and the required proficiency in English can apply for the courses and participate from anywhere in the world.

Freestanding Courses

We are offering four (4) fully-online, half-time courses in Transformative Game Design. These courses are freestanding, but build on each other. In other words, you cannot take the third course before the first one; you have to take them in order. You can choose to just take one course if you like or take more of them over time.

To read more about applying, see the Application section below. To read more about the specific courses, click here:

  1. Introduction to Transformative Game Design

  2. Transformative Game Design 1 (Design Focus)

  3. Transformative Game Design 2 (Implementation Focus)

  4. Cultivating Transformational Communities

The first two courses will be run during the Autumn semester 2023 and the second two during the Spring semester 2024.

For non-EU/EEA applicants there is a fee for the courses, as well as a fee for applying. For more info, see below under Payment.

Important Dates for the 2023-2024 Academic Year

All courses are online and run at half-time (50%) at the Master's level. Half-time means that students should expect to set aside twenty (20) hours per week for work, including: extensive reading and watching videos; engagement in written asynchronous discussion forums and peer reviews; writing journals, professional documents, and academic papers; and meeting synchronously over video conferencing with their playtest groups a minimum of three (3) times per course.

While these courses are at the Master's level, they are considered electives for our Game Design degree programmes. Any qualified student can take them without acceptance into one of the programmes. Successful completion of these courses will result in a Certificate, not a Master's degree.

The schedule for the Transformative Game Design freestanding courses is:

Autumn 2023 (application period is March 15—April 17)

  • Introduction to Transformative Game Design (7.5 credits): August 28 –November 5 (weeks 35–44)
  • Transformative Game Design 1 (7.5 credits): November 6–January 14 (weeks 45–02)

Spring 2024 (application period is September 15—October 16)

  • Transformative Game Design 2 (7.5 credits): January 15 –March 24 (weeks 03 – 12)
  • Cultivating Transformational Communities (7.5 credits): March 25–June 2 (weeks 13–22)

Completion of all four (4) courses qualifies students for a Certificate in Transformative Game Design.

Note: Introduction to Transformative Game Design is open to all students with a Bachelor’s degree and the required proficiency in English. However, each of the following courses builds upon the last one. In order to qualify for the next course in the sequence, a percentage of previous courses must be completed with a passing grade.

If you have further questions, please contact our study advisor, Stephanie Noroozy at gamedesign@speldesign.uu.se.


Entry Requirements

In order to be offered a place, you must first meet certain general and specific entry requirements.

The general requirements of second cycle courses are a successfully completed Bachelor's degree and proficiency in English. Proof of skills in English is normally attested by means of an internationally recognised test, e.g. TOEFL, IELTS or equivalent. The entry requirement for studies is the equivalent of the Swedish upper secondary course English 6/English B. It is possible to take certain language exams online if necessary. Please read the linked language requirements here

General Application Information 

For courses running during the semester Autumn 2023 and Spring 2024, applications will have to be made in the Swedish application website. Without knowledge of Swedish, you will probably need guidance and we’re ready to help.

Applications are made for each semester. This means that if you want to take one or more courses in both the Autumn and the Spring, you will have to do two separate applications. The application for the Autumn semester is submitted in mid-March to mid-April. The application for the Spring semester is submitted in mid-September to mid-October.

For questions about the process or application procedures, please send an email to our study advisor, Stephanie Noroozy, at gamedesign@speldesign.uu.se. She will gladly help you with any questions big or small.


For non-EU/EEA applicants there is a fee for the courses and for applying. For more specific information about payment, please contact our study advisor, Stephanie Noroozy at gamedesign@speldesign.uu.se.

(Use a currency converter to get an idea what this rate is in your currency).

Application cost

The cost of applying is 900 SEK per application. This application fee is not per course but per application. This means that you can apply for the two courses during the Autumn semester in the same application. For taking courses in the Spring semester, you will need to submit a new application.

Course cost

Each course costs 15 000 SEK.


If you are a non-EU/EEA student who wants to take only the course Intro to Game Design, you would pay 900 SEK for applying and then 15 000 SEK for the course for a total of 15 900 SEK.

If you are a non-EU/EEA student who wants to take the certificate,  you would pay for two applications (one per semester), 900 SEK * 2 = 1800 SEK. You would then also need to pay for four classes (two per semester) 15 000 SEK * 4 = 60 000 SEK. This would mean a total of 61 800 SEK. 

Overview with Deadlines for Courses - Autumn semester

Before applying online: Create your own user account in the English version of the online application: universityadmissions.se

Follow the instructions on the documents you need to provide: https://www.universityadmissions.se/en/apply-to-masters/provide-application-documents-masters/

There is a list per country with specific requirements.

March 15 - April 17 Application open.

In order to apply for the Autumn courses in Spring 2022, students must apply in the Swedish round, meaning that the website will be in Swedish. However, you may input your information in English. We have made a step-by-step guide in English. To receive the guide and to get help with the process, please contact our study advisor, Stephanie Noroozy at gamedesign@speldesign.uu.se.

If you plan to take both Introduction to Game Design and Transformative Game Design I in the Autumn, you must apply for both courses during this period.

Note: Staff will not be available to help you from April 7-10 for Easter break. We recommend applying before April 13 if you need assistance, but officially the system closes at 11:59pm Central European Summer Time (CEST) on Monday, April 17.

Pay your application fee (if applicable).

July 12: The first notification of results from the admissions will arrive to the email you indicated in your profile. Be sure to check your spam folder or make sure you receive notifications from the application system before or during this time.

Important Note: If you are offered a place, you must reply to your email notification in order to keep the place offered. You must reply before July 21, 2023 to confirm your place, which is a short turnaround time. You can also decline the offer and still apply again in the future. No reply at all means that we will offer your place to the person in the waiting list.

If you are placed in the waiting list, you must also reply to the email notification that you wish to stay in the list. Your position in the waiting list could change in the second notification, July 27. Depending on the number of applicants who declined their place, you could be offered a place.

Whether we can offer you a place after the second notification depends on the number of admitted students who do not register to the courses. You will get notification from the Department from gamedesign@speldesign.uu.se.

Early August: Invoices are sent to your email address in your profile. The fee is due before you can register for the course. Follow the instructions in the invoice.

Other Logistical Information

Make sure you have access to the required technology for the duration of the course.

Courses require stable access to the Internet. While most activities take place in our Learning Management System, Studium, you will also need to design and playtest games with your classmates using video conferencing software. We recommend Zoom, which is supported and offered by the University and has many useful features. You may also use other services such as Discord. Some students coordinate over Slack or Facebook Messenger. Doodle polls are also free and useful for planning scheduling.

Whatever mode of communication you use, make sure you are able to connect with your group members early and often.

You will not need or receive a Swedish residency permit to take these courses.

All courses take place online. Therefore, travel and residency in Sweden is not necessary. Acceptance into these courses does not grant you a Swedish residency permit.

Swedish universities require homework to be assigned and completed over Winter break.

A short break from scheduled courses will take place between mid-December and the first week of January. While courses are usually not held during this period, students usually are required to complete and submit assignments. Make sure to plan accordingly.

If you have further questions, please contact our study advisor, Stephanie Noroozy at gamedesign@speldesign.uu.se.

Graphic design by Liliia Chorna.

Click here to learn more about the Transformative Play Initiative.


“The Transformative Game Design program has had profound impact on my professional work. Individual change is difficult; culture change is even more so. This is especially true for a large, complex company with globally distributed teams. By infusing my design and strategy work with transformative play concepts, I’ve been able to influence mindset, perspective, and behavior shifts at scale. I can imagine all kinds of exciting applications to transform change management and organizational development initiatives using a more human and playful lens.” 

— Gabe Sopocy, 2022-2023 Certificate Track

Last modified: 2023-03-15