Graduates who are mad about digital games will be taking new courses in entertainment software design from this autumn. Sheffield Hallam University has joined forces with Sony PlayStation to offer an MSc which will train students to become software developers and to break into the competitive gaming industry. Successful graduates can expect to earn good money, as well as have fun.

The games industry is growing worldwide and is already bigger than the film industry, says course leader Bob Steele. "Games market revenue linked to blockbuster films like Matrix Reloaded is bigger than the revenue from the film itself." This gaming boom has not escaped the notice of the Surrey Institute of Art and Design, which has also launched a masters in digital games design.

Northumbria University in Newcastle is offering a postmodern take on the games industry. It is running a new masters in video-games studies, which will analyse the cultural impact of computer games. Students will look at the social, historical and ethical significance of playing games such as Tomb Raider, Sonic the Hedgehog and Grand Theft Auto, says Northumbria. This will involve studying the games' genres and narratives, and which aspects attract male and female audiences. Students will also look at how the games are marketed and whether they have educational value or promote violence.

* Cerebral and practical approaches to helping those with mental health difficulties are among a selection of new courses on offer at Goldsmiths College, University of London, this autumn. A new MRes (Master of Research) in psychoanalytic history will give qualified psychotherapists and counsellors the chance to explore aspects of the history of psychoanalysis, such as case-history writing. The two-year part-time course - which will also consider applications from those with a background in social work, community psychiatric nursing and similar fields - will be assessed by three long essays and a 15,000-word dissertation.

Goldsmiths' new postgraduate diploma/MA in dance movement therapy, on the other hand, is a practical and theoretical course which provides in-depth clinical skills for work with adults, children and adolescents, and leads to professional registration with the Association of Dance Movement Therapy UK. It may be studied part- or full-time and the MA requires additional study and a dissertation. Other new postgraduate courses at Goldsmiths this autumn include MAs in Caribbean literature and Creole poetics, photography and urban cultures, and an MRes in textiles.

* It may be a breeding ground for capitalists, but Cranfield School of Management is also interested in sharing its business expertise with charities. Two annual MBA scholarships - worth £32,000 each - are to be offered jointly by the school and The Cranfield Trust (a charity linked to the school which provides consultancy to UK charities) to voluntary-sector managers. The scholarships offer a place on Cranfield's executive MBA programme, which allows managers to study while continuing to work. The deadline for applications for the scholarships is 20 November, and details are available at www.cranfieldmba.info.

g.mccann@independent.co.uk

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