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Principal Faculty

  • Director, Art & Design: Games & Playable Media ​BA Program
  • Associate Professor, ​Digital Arts & New Media MFA Program

Professor Hunicke joined UCSC in 2014 to develop and promote undergraduate and graduate education that explores games as a medium of critical, social and expressive artistic practice. This mission informs her teaching within DANM, her work in Games & Playable media BA and BS programs, and... more

micha cárdenas
  • Assistant Professor, Art & Design: Games & Playable Media ​BA Program

micha cárdenas, PhD, is Assistant Professor of Art & Design: Games + Playable Media at the University of California, Santa Cruz. cárdenas sees education as a path to liberation, and her teaching focuses on discussion, interactivity and creative practice as research. cárdenas is writing a new... more

Portrait of professor Darke next to an arcade version of Donkey Kong.
  • Assistant Professor, Art & Design: Games & Playable Media ​BA Program
  • Professor, Computational Media

I am a Human Computer Interaction and Games researcher who creates and studies digital games and other playful computer-supported experiences. My focus is emotion and social connection--understanding the impact of design choices on these qualities, and getting better at building and evaluating... more

  • Professor, Computer Engineering
  • Professor, Computational Media

Very briefly, my research focuses on the design and evaluation of interactive systems that help people with special needs, including older persons, people from third world countries, those with low socioeconomic and educational backgrounds and people with disabilities and children.
My... more

  • Chair, Computational Media
  • Professor, Computational Media
  • Director, Center for Games and Playable Media

Michael Mateas is Director of the Center for Games and Playable Media. He is a Professor of Computational Media at University of California, Santa Cruz, where he helped launch the Computer Game Design degree, the first of its kind in the UC system. His work explores artificial intelligence-based... more

  • Assistant Professor, Art & Design: Games & Playable Media ​BA Program

As a game designer, Elizabeth's research has focused on metacognitive development outcomes and strategy-based learning in games, taking advantage of the medium’s strength in establishing learning through systems-thinking and social interaction. Her artistic focus is in exploring issues of... more

  • Professor, Computational Media

Jim Whitehead is a Professor Computational Media at the University of California, Santa Cruz, where he helped create the Computer Game Design program. He is also the founder and board chair of the Society for the Advancement of the Science of Digital Games, which hosts the yearly Foundations of... more