HAMK Gaming Academy is responsible for esports related activities and operations at Häme University of Applied Sciences (HAMK). HAMK Gaming Academy organizes esports related studies, events, and projects for HAMK students. One of the key elements in HAMK Gaming Academy is the Esports Business Management module. The scope of the module is 15 credits, and it consists of three parts: 1) Sports Management (5 credits) 2) Esports Projects (5 credits) and 3) Marketing and Events (5 credits).
Implementation of Esports Business Management
The Esports Business Management module has now been implemented twice. The latest implementation was in the academic year 2021-2022 during the 2nd and 3rd periods. The module is available for all HAMK students studying in the bachelor-level degree programmes. During the first two implementations there were students from ten different degree programmes, mainly from the fields of business, design, and technology. Esports is a global phenomenon, and it is visible in the module as well: there have been students of 17 nationalities from all over the world.
The module is implemented mainly online, because of the wide range of students and their different schedules.
Esports Business Management module starts with the Sports Management course, where students will learn about esports business models, environment, and ecosystems by analyzing the main operators in the field. Then they will move to the Esports Projects course where the focus shifts more on the practical side. Students will work in teams and create solutions and practical implementations for projects given by organizations working in the field of esports. The final course of the module is Marketing and Events where students can combine the learned viewpoints together and apply those in esports marketing and event production.
Jussi Saarman is one of the students participating in the Esports Business Management module in 2021-2022. He is currently studying in the degree programme in Business Administration at HAMK and has been playing video games for years. In the Sports Management course, he reflected on the topics discussed in a learning journal assignment. He chose G2 Esports as a case study organization for this course. In Esports Projects he was working in a multidisciplinary team and their project was to develop Hämpton Games event’s marketing and visibility. In the Marketing and Events course, he examined different esports events, followed esports operators on social media and drafted an esports partnership plan for the chosen operators.
– If you have any interest in esports and you want to know a bit about how things work in the field, I strongly suggest taking this course! Because even if your favorite esports is a bit niche, you can still use it in your assignments, because you aren’t forced to use any specific organizations in your case studies, Jussi recommends.
Students appreciate constructive conversations in the module
The module feedback from the students has been extremely encouraging and students who participate in the module have a genuine interest in esports and even plans to create a career path in the industry. In the academic year 2021-2022, the average grade for the entire module was 4.3, while the maximum score is 5. The best individual evaluations were given to ”Implementation plan included all necessary information I needed for studying” (4.6), ”Course contents were topical and versatile” (4.7), ”Workload was in line with the number of earned credits” (4.6), ”I received enough teaching and guidance” (4.6).
It is good to have something to develop as well. The module team will continuously develop the module from the pedagogical as well as the substance point of views. As esports is a growing and developing industry, the topics of the module need to be updated constantly. The assessment criteria will be highlighted with more details during the module and the team will be inviting visiting lecturers from the field to join lectures to share their own experiences. According to the open feedback students have enjoyed especially work-related assignments and constructive conversations during the module. The next implementation of the module will be in the academic year 2022-2023.
Authors: Esports Business Management module’s leader Eveliina Toivonen and Business Administration student Jussi Saarman