A student from Miami University in Ohio has been given the green light to create an eSports course. It will be the first of its kind in America, and she has already garnered support from around the world.
Ever wondered how this eSports craze got started, the psychology involved at the highest tier, and anything else you can wrap your head around?
You are about to find out.
Stelanie Tsirlis, 22, is a student at Miami University in Ohio; a president of her school eSports team, the co-founder of AllMid, an organisation that produces eSports events in the Midwest, and the first student given the green light to create an eSports curriculum in the US.
According to eSports publication Slingshot, Tsirlis floated the idea to director of Interactive Media Studies, Glenn Platt, a few months ago, and after thinking it through, believes it will be an excellent idea. Platt will help formulate the course; Professor Phil Alexander will help her teach it. The course runs next fall.
“If we really want eSports to be sustainable and continue moving forward, then people need to know more about it.” Tsirlis told Slingshot.
Goal #1: Get a professor to sign off on my idea.
Goal #2: What the hell do I teach?
To help Tsirlis answer that question she posted her idea on Reddit and asked for feedback. At the time of writing, there have been 66 comments on content ideas ranging from the history of eSports, business models, player analysis and the various cultures around the world.
“Things we didn’t even know what to think about, we’re now talking about.” Platt told Slingshot in reaction to the Reddit feedback.
The Course is Available to Everyone
In another move that breaks the mould and an idea that emerged from that Reddit discussion, Tsirlis is planning to approach Twitch to see if the course can be streamed live to people who want to take part in the new course but don’t live in Ohio.
What started out as one young woman’s idea is quickly evolving into a Kickstarter-like campaign consisting of a group of interested parties from all over the world intent on creating the content.
There are game courses available at New York University and Berkeley, California, but this will be the first college course in America. Platt also has plans to create a varsity eSports team and has plans to meet the athletic director to discuss the possibility.
At the turn of the year, we brought you the news that a school in Norway had also decided to include eSports classes as part of their curriculum. How long before eSports classes are as standard as maths, English and religious education?
Hopefully, for the sanity of the kids, sooner rather than later.
If you would like to have input on the course content then here is the link to that Reddit thread.