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Esports: Leveling Up Teach-Out

Discover the history of the multibillion-dollar esports industry, the ways it has impacted society, and how you can get involved.

492 enrolled on this course

The words 'Teach-Out' in front of a yellow gaming control with white buttons on the right hand side of the image and a team of sports people dressed in red, observing screens with headsets on, on the left side of the image.
  • Duration

    2 weeks
  • Weekly study

    2 hours
  • Digital upgrade


Explore the global phenomenon of esports

Esports is a phenomenon that has changed the lives of millions of people and challenged the very concept of sport.

On this two-week course from the University of Michigan, you’ll explore the esports landscape, learn about its societal impact, and the key opportunities and challenges of the industry.

Learn about the history of esports and how you can get involved

From a year’s magazine subscription to a prize pool of over $30 million, esports prizes have skyrocketed in its almost 50-year history as competitive gaming has developed into a multibillion-dollar industry.

You’ll explore the history of esports and its evolution into the behemoth it is today. The course will also guide you through the discussion around esports as a ‘real’ sport, comparing and contrasting it in relation to other sports and highlighting the value esports brings.

Delve into the possible careers within the esports industry

Much like in any sport, it takes more than just the players to build a successful team.

On this course, you’ll look at the different roles and careers within esports. From players and coaches to content creators and esports journalists, you’ll explore the myriad of careers available in the industry through interviews with professionals doing those very jobs.

Discover the impact of esports on gaming culture and society at large

Whether it’s a lack of diversity and representation or problematic workplace cultures, there have been many challenges across the history of esports and gaming.

This course will take you through this important conversation, looking at the many aspects of these challenges and how they’ve affected the culture of esports. You’ll also discuss the ways the industry can overcome these challenges and course correct for a fairer, more positive future.

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  • Week 1

    What are Esports?

    • Welcome!

      Welcome to the Esports: Leveling Up Teach-Out.

    • What are Esports?

      Learn about the history of esports and break down some key concepts.

    • Genres and Gameplay

      Begin to understand some of the classifications and core mechanics of competitive gaming.

    • How Do You Engage with Esports?

      The simplest ways to begin being involved in esports is to play and spectate.

    • Collegiate Esports

      It's become increasingly common for universities and colleges to offer competitive gaming opportunities to students.

    • Professional Esports Athletes & Organizations

      Many fans may dream about becoming a professional esports athletes or working for organizations, but those paths require many sets of skills.

  • Week 2

    Where is the Future of Esports?

    • Gaming Culture

      Consider what it means to be a gamer - according to society and to gamers themselves.

    • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Esports

      Esports comes with challenges and opportunities for the inclusion of diverse players.

    • Growth of the Industry

      Esports is rapidly evolving and there are many emergent topics: legal considerations, recognition as an Olympic sport and more.

    • Leveling Up on Esports

      Commit to continuing your exploration of esports.

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Explore esports genres and how to watch, play, and compete in esports
  • Reflect on the range of careers within the esports landscape
  • Identify some societal impacts of esports, including diversity challenges and gaming culture
  • Discuss possibilities for the future of the industry

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for anyone interested in learning more about esports, hearing industry and academic perspectives, and finding ways to be involved in the esports landscape.

Who will you learn with?

University of Michigan Teach-Out Experts

Who developed the course?

University of Michigan

As the #1 public research university in the United States, U-M has been a leader in research, learning, and teaching for more than 200 years, with 102 Grad programs in the top 10 — U.S. News & World Report (2019).

  • Established

  • Location

    Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
  • World ranking

    Top 30Source: Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2020

What's included?

University of Michigan are offering everyone who joins this course a free digital upgrade, so that you can experience the full benefits of studying online for free. This means that you get:

  • Unlimited access to this course
  • Includes any articles, videos, peer reviews and quizzes
  • A PDF Certificate of Achievement to prove your success when you’re eligible
  • Learning on FutureLearn

    Your learning, your rules

    • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
    • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
    • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

    Join a global classroom

    • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
    • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
    • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

    Map your progress

    • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
    • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control

    Want to know more about learning on FutureLearn? Using FutureLearn

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