It seems like such a great profession, being paid sums of money to play games all day. Much like being a real athlete, becoming an eSports player requires far more dedication and practice than many are willing to put in. Recognition of the skill and effort required to play at such a high level has allowed a number of considerations given to traditional athletes also offered to cyber athletes. Garnes Vidaregåande Skule plans to do something no other school has yet to try: add eSports classes to their core curriculum.
The school located in Bergen, Norway, won’t be making the subject mandatory yet, being only an elective subject, but it is a bold move. The course will contain at least 5 hours of study each week in the game specialisation of their choice. I’m sure plenty of people would be excited to play games at school for 5 hours a week, sadly for them, this is not the case. It has been confirmed that as well as playing and learning an eSports game, the classes will contain physical training to help concentration and reflexes as well as nutritional and lifestyle advice.
Some of the games planned to be on offer as part of the course are Dota 2, League of Legends and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive as well as others, comprising a shortlist, with students able to suggest new games and vote on the list of those to be offered. At first, they will offer only two games as part of the course, for logistical reasons, but I’m sure that if it is a success that more will be made available. Petter Grahl Johnstad, Manager of the Science Department at the Garnes Vidaregåande Skule told Dotablast that they planned to work closely with the eSports community to be able to improve their courses, hoping to have both regular teachers for the subjects and Skype based seminars with professional eSports players. He hopes that the course will be about more than just gaming to the students, with crucial aspects being teamwork, motivation, cooperation and tactics, as well as skill in-game.
Garnes Vidaregåande Skule could lead the way for other schools, both in Norway and around the world to offer classes in eSports alongside those in traditional sports such as football. Whether it catches on, however, it is hard to tell, but at the rate the eSports scene is growing, it isn’t hard to imagine more and more young people entering it. At the very least, students studying this course get supplied top of the end hardware to play on, including Nvidia GeForce GTX 980Ti graphics cards. I’m jealous.