What you want to study at university and why
* Specific aspects of the courses that interest you
* Examples of coursework you have completed
* Practical work you have enjoyed
* Books, articles, etc. you have read related to the subject area
* Work experience or voluntary work in this area
* Conferences you have attended
* Personal experiences that lead to the decision to take this subject
* Where you hope a degree in this subject will take you in the future
* Experiences that show you are a reliable and responsible person
* Part-time job
* Business enterprise
* Community and charity work
* Sixth form committee
* Helping out at school events and open days
* Young Enterprise, World Challenge, Duke of Edinburgh award, Asdan Award, Debating societies, and what you have gained from these experiences. Your interests and skills
* What you like to do in your free time
* Sport and leisure activities
* Subjects you study that are not examined
* Musical instrument(s) you play
* Languages you speak
* Prizes you have won or positions achieved in your interests From the personal statements you have just read through, you may have gathered the following guidelines:
* Don’t sound arrogant and pretentious
* Try to have an interesting phrase or paragraph to start and finish on * Try not to quote books, magazines or publications in a way that makes it sound like you’ve only read them to put them on your statement. * Do not lie outright and stay as close to the truth as possible * Don’t try to be funny or make jokes in your statement
* Don’t start every sentence with I
* Don’t include your hobbies and interests unless they are relevant * Don’t use vocabulary you don’t normally use and just looked up in a dictionary * Don’t use famous quotes in your statement unless you back them up with information on how and why this person’s quote influenced you. Dropping them in just for the sake of it makes you look silly and that you haven’t given serious thought to your personal statement. * Don’t repeat things already on your UCAS form, e.g. predicted exam grades. * With the exception of a gap year, don’t make claims you are going to do something before you come to university * Don’t include clichés
* Don’t take any political or religious viewpoints.
write down a list of words or sentences you would like to use like this:
* to gain greater understanding of the world around you
* sends a signal to prospective employers and graduate schools
* students of economics become problem-solvers
* the fact is economics affects our daily lives
* a challenging and diverse discipline
* develops analytical skills, quantitative skills, research skills
* it is interesting and relevant
Another approach is to split up your notes into a few categories and write a paragraph on each category. For example: * Paragraph 1: Introduction to the subject, the aspects you’re interested in and why * Paragraph 2: What you have done related to the subject that isn’t already on your UCAS form * Paragraphs 3 and 4: Work experience placements and relevant activities at school * Paragraph 5: Your interests outside of school, particularly those that show you are a responsible and reliable person * Paragraph 6: Your goal of attending university and a memorable closing comment In our opinion it’s best to start with why you want to take your subject, and finish with why you want to go to university or what you want to do afterwards.
Before you begin, take a look at the websites and prospectuses of the universities you are applying to, and see if they say anything about writing personal statements. Along with writing about what you’ve done, try and explain why you did it, or what you think you learned from it.For example:
I currently have a part time job and this has taught me about teamwork, responsibility and time management in the workplace.
Computer Games Programming personal statement
I find the fields of Artificial Intelligence and Games Physics interesting and so I have decided to study a course to include these areas. I am currently studying an A level in Information Technology in which I have used Visual Basic in Microsoft Excel and Access. At home I have used the actionscript language in Macromedia Flash to build an interactive personal website. I found this aspect of computing very interesting and so I will really enjoy programming in C++ and other programming languages. I am also studying an A level in Mathematics that I really enjoy. This would be useful for many parts of the course such as games physics. When I’ve played computer games in the past I have always wanted to be able to create something similar. Consequently, the computer games programming course stood out as something that I really wanted to do. I have used some software programs such as Microsoft Visual Basic, Softimage|XSI ESP 3.0, Discreet 3DS MAX 5 (evaluation version) and Maya Personal Learning Edition. I would like to see people’s enjoyment when playing a game, knowing that I took part in producing it.
I have emailed a few programming companies such as Valve Software, id software, Lionsoft, Electronic Arts and Codemasters explaining my situation and asking whether it would be better to take a games programming course or a software development course and learn game specific items afterwards or in my spare time. All of the replies advised me to take the computer games programming course as this way I would already possess the games programming knowledge. Undertaking my work experience as a sales assistant in a computer store allowed me to develop skills such as working in a team and dealing with customers. Although I was working with others a lot of the time, I also had to work independently. This allowed me to use my own initiative and solve problems.
Whilst attending Sutton High Sports College, I have done a large amount of voluntary work. During years 10 and 11, I helped with the schools open days and sports days where I did scoring. I also took part in after school activities such as playing music. Outside of school I have helped at “Darby and Joan’s” which is for old aged pensioners where they can get together for company, and to talk and play bingo. Year 12 saw me helping with the year 6 induction day, and assisting with scoring on both the school’s open day and the St. Helens Athletic Finals. Participation in a first aid course gained me a certificate in “Emergency Aid in the workplace for Appointed Persons.”
This involved areas such as resuscitation and control of bleeding. Hobbies and interests include reading books; the genres preferred being science fiction and horror. I also like playing piano of which I am currently working towards grade 8, and I have played “The Skaters’ Waltz” at Parr Hall (a concert hall) in Warrington. I enjoy using my computer for playing games, including playing games online, and for using the internet to keep up to date with current news in the computing and gaming world, new hardware and software releases. My interests cover a wide area, which I believe will help me in both academic and social life at university. My aim is to become a computer games programmer developing any type of game for PC or console, and I believe that a university course will help me achieve my goal.
Computer Science personal statement
From an early age I’ve always been deeply interested in computing. It was my dad, introducing me to the computer systems at his work place that first sparked this interest. I can always remember the feeling of wanting to know just how computers worked, why they worked and what else they could do. This interest never left me, only growing more profound and passionate with every new discovery I made. From communicating with an artificial intelligence to seeing the wonders of the Internet for the first time, computers have left me fascinated with just how much power yet mystery they hold. The A-Levels I chose to study have all helped me to develop both myself and my understanding of the subject. Physics for example has helped me to understand how certain parts of a computer function, while Computing has given me a greater insight into the business aspects of the computer industry. Chemistry and Physics have both helped to improve my analytical and evaluative skills. Within maths I have been lucky enough to have a teacher who was very interested in computer science.
He has been especially helpful, lending me books such as Gödel, Escher, Bach: an Eternal Golden Braid. This has given me an insight into the richness that is computer science. My interest in computing has not been restricted to the classroom and college life. Within the last twelve months I’ve used the knowledge that I’ve gained over the past twelve years together with the help of my family to set up my own computer related business. This has given me a totally new perspective on how certain things function, and how business operates. The writing of a business plan was a totally alien experience for me, but over the course of 9 months I researched and planned, and finally when the plan was complete I was rewarded with the satisfaction of knowing that I had completed something that most people would never have the chance to do especially at my age.
Through the setting up of the company and its subsequent running I have learnt many things. These include how to balance tasks effectively, how critical teamwork can be and how to delegate tasks to get the job done quickly and efficiently. As well as spending time both studying and helping to run the business I understand the importance of having time to relax. One of my hobbies that I try to make time for is learning to fly, and gaining my private pilots license. As a child I dreamed of becoming a pilot and luckily its one dream that I’ve managed to follow. I love the freedom that flying gives you and the control that you have when in the air.
Training for my private pilots license (PPL) has also involved me taking onboard a lot of responsibility for the safety of those onboard, and those around the aircraft. From ensuring that I carry out the pre-flight checks correctly, and knowing what’s around you both while you’re on the ground and in the air to ensuring that I’m prepared for any eventuality. I also enjoy both playing and watching tennis. I’ve played in various competitions before, and have helped to umpire junior matches at my club. To ensure that I can fit everything in I’ve had to develop very good time management, prioritising what I need to do efficiently. I’m looking forward with great anticipation to the challenges that studying for a degree in computer science will bring.
Computer Science Personal statement
I want to study Computer Science because the world of computers and their integration has exploded in recent years. It has been incredible to observe the development of the computer, from something that was originally the size of a small room and now can fit easily into your hand and has become an integral part of modern society finding uses in just about everything. I want to be a part of the fastest moving technology in the world striving to advance the technologies available to industry and the consumer. While studying my AS Levels in Computing, Mathematics, Further Mathematics and Physics I have found that they are all interlinked. The choice of my subjects has given me an in depth understanding of the principle ideas of computing that I would not have been able to achieve studying them in one context. The area that I most enjoyed in my computing course was a piece of coursework which involved having to create a database to a stringent specification.
I found this challenging to complete because I was given a problem and had to construct a working solution for it using Microsoft Access and Visual Basic in Applications. Programming is a major factor in my interest of Computer Science. I find programming appealing because of the challenge involved in creating a resolution to a problem using different methods. My study of Mathematics and Further Mathematics have played a pivotal role in my studies giving me a logical thought process that I can apply to other subject areas. I found the Mechanics module that I took in my Further Mathematics most intriguing as it could be applied to real life situations such as projectile motion. This was also true for some other modules as I found the applied side more rewarding and enjoyable as opposed to the pure side of Mathematics.
While at my secondary school I chose to take my statistics module in year nine staying behind once a week so I could improve my mathematical understanding in preparation for my further education. I also opted to take a vocational art and design course which meant I attended a class at Blackburn College for two hours a week extra. In addition to these I studied an AS level in critical thinking during year ten. Studying for these extra qualifications has reinforced my determination to proceed on to higher education. In my spare time I have worked for over a season as a Ground Safety Steward at Blackburn Rovers Football Club. During my time at the club I have learnt skills such as dealing with the public and providing a welcoming atmosphere, working under pressure and becoming a reliable and responsible person.
Stewarding at Blackburn Rovers has provided me with an interesting escape from college life. At college I was a member of a cross college committee which involved representing the student voice with regards to the ICT issues within the college. I acted as the link between the student body and the administration. I found this a good use for my ICT knowledge and also gained an understanding of how problems are dealt with in a business type environment. My hobbies include keeping fit by running regularly. I benefit from this because it is a chance to test myself and it enables me to focus and calm my mind eliminating everyday stress. I hope to gain my scuba diving license this year which means I will be qualified to scuba dive. From my university experience I aim to become a more independent person and make new friends with similar interests.
Computer Games Programming Personal Statement
It has been said a picture can paint a thousand words. If this is the case then I believe a game, an interactive picture, which can not only be observed but experienced fully by the user, an entire world for them to immerse themselves in can speak volumes. Games are a growing part of our society and become more and more popular every single day. Games have been a lifelong hobby and enjoyment of mine, a way of escaping to a new world where you can leave reality behind and experience scenarios and situations that would not normally be possible for most people. However my greatest passion is not with the playing of games, but the workings of them. I have always been curious about the way things work. Especially computers and the software they run. In my spare time I enjoy repairing, building and upgrading PCÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s for myself and friends. I like to learn about and have knowledge on most areas of computing hardware and software wise, however it is games and the creation of them which really catches my eye and sucks me in as the area I would love to go into as a career in life.
Despite my passion for games and computers I am not deskbound all day long. I have a part time job as a Business Machines Associate working in the technology section of my local Staples UK ltd store. Dealing with customer problems/repairs, offering advice and maintaining security protocol among other duties. The Job which I have held for almost a year now has given me a major confidence and initiative boost, taught me to work independently and think logically and on my feet. When not at work, school or at my PC I can be found juggling another passion of mine. Balls, clubs, fire and knives I juggle just about anything and find it to be both an enjoyable and relaxing pastime.
I also attend my local gym regularly in order to keep fit as I believe this benefits the individual in many areas of life both mentally and physically. Being involved with school is another important thing to me. I have worked with the IT technicians testing the security of the school network and discovering a number of security holes which I pointed out to them which have since been corrected. I continue to help maintain the integrity and security of the network by ensuring no security holes exist. I also visit a year 10 class once a week in the morning to help out with organising assemblies and events for them.
Learning more about how games are actually designed, programmed and put together has been something that I have actively tried to learn about myself ever since I had the resources available to me and have familiarised myself with Macromedia flash and the action script language it uses. AutoDesk 3DS Max and Maya (PLE edition) and have begun to teach myself C++. I wish to carry on learning about games design and programming at university so that I can pursue it as a career and continue to extend my knowledge on it throughout my life. To be involved in the creation of one of the most enjoyable and advanced forms of entertainment today is a major ambition of mine. To have the opportunity to leave a quirky Easter egg of my own hidden in a game. Games are like a concert where the audience gets to perform and I want to be the one who made the instruments.
Computer games programming isn’t a degree that a typical girl would probably be interested in. But then, I do not see myself as a typical student. When I first left school I studied A levels, but at the end of two years I felt as though I lacked direction and still had no idea what I wanted to do in the future. I took the opportunity to work for a year and give myself some time to think about what I wanted to do in the future. I tried to think about something that I had been passionate about my whole life, and what I came up with was games. Ever since playing the Master System II as a child I have always had an interest in playing the newest and most exciting games, and the thrill of completing them. I enrolled on a National Diploma course for IT Practitioners and my resolve was strengthened when I started my Software Design and Development unit and discovered a passion for programming, which I continued to enjoy in my Event Driven Programming unit. I enjoy the logical thinking required to create a program trying to fix any problems, and the sense of achievement when the program is finished and working.
I am particularly interested in the advancing technology of gaming, especially human computer interaction and artificial intelligence, and would love to study these in more detail. When I am not at college I work in a shop selling teas and coffees. I am given a lot of responsibility there and I am trusted to run the shop on Sundays, which involves looking after the money and directing my colleagues. I have also been responsible for training new members of staff. This has given me the skills of working in a team. The job also requires me to have a good knowledge of the products, which is something I have studied in my spare time, as well as the ability to explain what you know to the customers. I think this has helped me to be able to speak to people easily and confidently. I have also developed excellent time management skills from my previous job, which required me to get a variety of different meals ready on time.
These skills have been useful at college for helping me to plan my assignments and get them in on time. I also volunteer with a group called “Silver Surfers”, an organisation run by Age Concern to help elderly people with using computers and the internet. I enjoy doing this because I like helping people with something that I am confident in doing, and seeing the progress in someone who had never used a computer before, and by the end of the session being happy that they have achieved something. I find helping these people becoming more confident with computers very rewarding and have made friends with a lot of the clients that I have helped. I have also helped out at my college in promoting the course that I am studying. I had my photograph taken to be put in this year’s prospectus, and took part in a video interview about the course to be shown to prospective students.
As well as playing games, I spend a lot of my free time reading. I enjoy many genres but my favourites are fantasy and romance novels. I have even started writing my own novel along these lines. Though it is still a work in progress I find writing is a good way of letting my creativity out, and find it very satisfying when I have finished writing an interesting chapter. I also love watching films and frequently have movie nights with my friends, where we will watch anything from horrors to musicals. After completing my games programming course my aim would be to work in a games company, programming the latest console games. My dream would be to see a project that I have worked hard on selling in shops and people enjoying the products that I have put all of my passion and energy into.
In a fast paced world surrounded by technology my fascination with computers continues to grow. From an early age I had an urge and desire to understand how technology worked and it is this fascination that has led me to study computer science. As I have progressed through education to satisfy my appetite for knowledge I have become an experienced programmer and website designer. During my studies I have programmed using Java, Python and PHP. On average, I have produced two games or applications per year, usually with a MySQL database backend. My portfolio so far includes: three web applications (a car rental, film hire and plane booking system), an Android application (a sponsored swim management tool) and two games (peg solitaire and noughts and crosses). One of my favourite units of work was designing the airline booking system because I find the area of Human Computer Interaction incredibly interesting.
I personally find it fascinating that the interpretation of a system or application by its users can make a fundamental contribution to aspects of productivity and efficiency. For this reason my long term goal is to complete a master’s degree focusing specifically in the area of user experience. My ability to solve complex problems with a methodical and logical approach was demonstrated in Computer Forensics and Advanced Databases. An excellent understanding of the operating system and file structures were required to construct plausible scenarios and timelines relating to possible crimes. I also found relational algebra challenging but fun. With the use of online tools such as Deepnet search engines I was able to find academic papers with which to research areas of particular interest and that enabled me to better understand advanced topics including privacy enhancing technologies and biometrics.
During my individual project (film rental system) I had the ability to adapt modules (Software Development Introduction and Project management) to implement an agile software development strategy. I am also really enjoying taking part in the group project which is designing a diagnostic tool for use in the NHS. I am a very reliable team player and my responsibilities so far have been: research of current diagnostic solutions and organising team meetings via hangouts on Google Plus. Work experience and working independently with various clients in website development and software support tasks has improved my confidence and working knowledge. Experience in the ‘real world’ has been very beneficial; deepening my understanding of topics that I have studied at university such as Object Oriented Programming and Design – allowing me to produce more reliable and efficient code with the use of frameworks (Codeigniter) and APIs (JQuery).
In my free time I like to relax by going to the swimming pool. I am a dedicated and motivated swimmer and was an active member of East Sutherland and Tain Amateur Swimming Clubs, regularly participating in training and swimming competitions. I was elected as club secretary of East Sutherland for two consecutive years, during which time my responsibilities included negotiating financial agreements, co-ordinating a training strategy with coaches and working alongside designers to develop brand concepts and produce logos. As well as being a keen swimmer I am a self-taught photographer specialising in portraits. I am a highly skilled Photoshop user and am delighted to have been recently asked to showcase my work at a wedding.
Why do it? “The modern world depends on technology for everything from the financial markets to your weekly shop, and a good computer science degree will teach you all you need to know to create the next generation of technology and beyond. Computer science would suit you if you like to solve puzzles, enjoy mathematics at school and want a degree that involves technology and creative thinking, with a good blend of practical and theoretical work.” – Robert Harle, lecturer, and Alastair Beresford, academic fellow, the Computer Laboratory, University of Cambridge What’s it about? Fundamentally computer science is the study of logical reasoning and practical techniques to build solutions to real-world problems using modern technology. Any broad computer science degree will equip you with powerful analytical and programming skills as well as expose you to project management, software and hardware development Computer science is also an umbrella term used to account for many specialist or vocational degrees involving computers and technology.
Specialist degrees will begin by covering the fundamentals of computer science before concentrating on a specific area such as artificial intelligence, games development or computer security. Vocational courses typically cover management and development on current platforms with less of an emphasis on underlying theory. The list of computing pathways is getting longer by the year – in 2012, there’s over 1,200 different courses – enabling you to focus all of your attention on areas such as software engineering, artificial intelligence and games development; Abertay now even offers a four-year degree in ethical hacking and countermeasures. In your first year, theory is likely to dominate most courses, but lab time tends to increase as the years progress, with large-scale, research-led final projects on a piece of software being commonplace in the final year. Study options: As with most degrees, you’re looking at three years full-time studying, or four years in Scotland.
However, a large proportion of courses offer an industrial placement year, and MEng courses last for four years. At Bath, you can study a five-year MComp, which incorporates a sandwich year, while at Buckingham, you can complete a BSc in two years. What will I need to do it? Most universities want a maths A-level, with Cambridge and Imperial both requiring an A*, as well as a further A-grade A-levels. Cambridge prefers applicants to have physics as well, and further maths is also recommended. Surprisingly, a study of computer science itself is not usually a compulsory pre-requisite. Given the number of courses at over 100 different institutions, entry grades vary widely – London Met asks for just 220 UCAS points (CCD at A-level, or equivalent). What are my job prospects? The majority of graduates go into the computer industry, working as managers, product developers and engineers at companies such as Google, Microsoft, IBM and Apple.
There is also a vibrant start-up culture emerging in the UK, and graduates often work for smaller technology companies or start their own business. Despite the financial crash, computer science graduates remain in high demand in the financial sector at companies such as Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank or Goldman Sachs. The broader problem-solving and practical skills developed by computer science graduates are highly transferable and thus graduates are in demand in almost every sector. Further study is also a popular choice, with graduates going on to careers in industrial research or teaching. Although you may find reports of high unemployment amongst new computer science graduates, your prospects will vary greatly according to the course and institution you study at.
For example, this year’s Good University Guide, compiled by The Times, points out that graduate unemployment is highest among new computer science graduates, at 17 per cent. However, data from Unistats, a website run by UCAS, shows that graduate employment rates for those studying the broader computer science degrees at top universities are typically above 95 percent – higher than students studying most other subjects at the same institutions. Where’s best to do it? Cambridge topped the Complete University Guide 2012, followed by Oxford and Imperial. However, students at Stirling were most satisfied with their course, and St Andrews and Loughborough also fared well in this area.
Cracking the code: a guide to computer science
Top of Form
Bottom of Form
* | Register
The currency of computer science is information – how to store it, transmit it and process it electronically. It is considered by many of its practitioners to be a foundational science, one which makes other knowledge and achievements possible. And the things that have been made possible by computer science experts permeate every aspect of our modern lives. Look at mobile phones, satellite navigation, the internet; it’s easy to forget just how sophisticated these now everyday objects are. Consider computer science, then, if you think an exciting career at the forefront of technology is the thing for you.
But, this potential glamour means that the subject can be quite popular, which in combination with its basic complexity means that you’ll have to prove your mettle, particularly if you have your sights on one of the more prestigious courses out there. Be ready to demonstrate both basic proficiency as well as demonstrable passion. If you manage to make the cut, you will begin by acquiring a basic grounding in algorithms, programming, and organizing data, with a smattering of essential mathematics. You will then be able to choose from a raft of specializations, which in turn open up a whole host of careers… * View the QS World University Rankings by Subject: Computer Science > Career options and prospects
One of the most appealing things about a degree in computer science is, in our increasingly technological era, that employers will virtually be fighting over you. In the UK, for instance, 1 in 20 workers are employed in IT and telecoms – a field for which computer science graduates are particularly well suited – and there is still further demand, with computer science graduates enjoying one of the lowest unemployment levels in the country. In Australia there are more vacancies for ICT professionals than for business, finance and human resources professionals put together. Programmers are also always in demand, from established and new companies alike. And as more and more aspects of our modern lives become computerized it seems unlikely that opportunities will be drying up too soon.
The Association for Computing Machinery identifies a raft of potential career paths. For example, there is designing and implementing software, a path has changed a lot in recent years, with web development mobile computing coming to the fore. You might also work in an academic or industrial research capacity, coming up with new ways in which we might use computers. Or you could work in planning and managing organizational technology infrastructure. This final career is best suited to candidates who specialize in information technology, as modern courses in this field tend to focus on this area. There’s plenty of scope for using your knowledge in an entrepreneurial capacity, and there are plenty of non-computer science jobs graduates might take up. Teaching, management and general IT roles are some examples.
Given its nature as subject which is essentially concerned with the building blocks of complex things, computer science contains within it a whole host of potential specializations. Some of these include: • Computer graphics: The use of computers to render still or moving two or three dimensional images. This has applications outside of the traditional remit of computer science – think architecture or product design – as well as things like computer games design • Programming language theory: Though programming is often treated as a means rather than an end, it is a key area of study. This is an interdisciplinary specialization, incorporating elements from subjects such as mathematics and linguistics.
• Human-computer interaction: With technology coming to play a greater and greater part in our lives, the way we interact with it is becoming increasingly important. The wheel of an iPod, the motion sensing devices of modern games consoles, and augmented reality applications on smart phones are examples of innovations in this field. • Robotics: Sometimes incorporating artificial intelligence, robotics is the development of mechanical devices to perform tasks more efficiently than a human could (or tasks that a human could not do). Unsurprisingly, there is much crossover with engineering. • Systems analysis: A study of existing computer systems with a view to improving them by making them more efficient, user friendly and generally fit for purpose. This could lead to a career in consultancy.
Computer science is a challenging discipline, but succeeding in it will furnish you with an impressive skill set. Skills you will gain include: • Technical expertise – most importantly, an understanding of algorithms and computer languages
• Practical skills
• Analytical and critical thinking
• Working as part of a team
• Communication skills
• Mathematical aptitude (potentially also stretching to engineering). General interdisciplinary ability
• Commercial awareness
• Adaptability to developments in the field (continuing professional development is very important in computer science)
• The application of theory to real life
It depends if you’re dedicated and really want it, or if you just think it might be “fun” to write games because you enjoy playing them.
I’m working as a junior game developer alongside doing a BSc in Computer Science (I got recommended by various game developers to do straight Computer Science instead of “* With Games Technology”), it’s HARD work, the pay is average, you work late, you work weekends, usually without overtime pay. I have A Levels in Maths, Further Maths & Physics, and did a few modules of Maths in University and I still find it difficult to grasp some of the mathematical concepts in game programming. So yes, Maths is essential, some game development companies prefer you to have a BSc in Mathematics instead of Computer Science, having knowledge of College level physics (or higher) is also a big plus.
Also, the games industry is very full at the moment, I only managed to get a position from knowing people in the industry – otherwise you need to be very good at what you do to get in, and stand out from the massive amount of people who are applying every day.
There’s always openings for exceptional programmers (and other people who excel in their area of expertise) but put it this way, in the year I’ve worked here we’ve had hundreds of people apply for jobs, tens of people got through for interviews, and only 2 got hired (the company has over 250 employees). One of the two guys didn’t have any official education, he just sent in an amazing example of his work and was hired almost instantly.
The “Computer Science with Games Technology” degree would only really cover you as a programmer, those types of degrees touch on 3d design too, but not in enough detail. If you don’t really enjoy maths though I wouldn’t say a game programmer would be the best role for you.
For a designer, you would ideally need to be good at 2D art and then learn the popular 3D modelling packages 3Ds Max, Maya & XSI (‘learn’ all 3, specialize in 1) – I think only one of our designers doesn’t draw as well as do the 3D design.
Being a producer would be an option, but a more suitable degree for that would be a business one, and then learning the fundamentals of programming and 3D design on the side. You don’t need anywhere near as much programming/design experience to be a producer though – just enough so you can oversee what’s going on. As you say though, this is a hard role to get in to because there’s usually only 1-2 producers compared to 20-25 programmers, and 30-35 designers working on a game.
I’m sure if you’re passionate about really wanting to get into the industry you would be able to do fine in any one of those roles with the suitable learning. It’s very hard work, but nothing beats the feeling of finally seeing a game you’ve worked on every day for the last year out on the shelf in shops, so good luck whatever area you choose.