since 1965  (really?)

Magic: The Gathering

This course listing applies to a Spring 2016 course. To find current courses, check out the Find a Course page.

Spring 2016
Statistics 98 / 198
2 Unit(s)

Human friendly URL (OBSOLETE)


About the Course:

Chances are that you have heard of the Magic: the Gathering trading card game, and have friends who play. Since its inception in 1993, M:tG has evolved into a fantastically complex game played competitively worldwide. Its popularity is skyrocketing – the number of players has literally quadrupled in the last 5 years – creating a community over 20 million players strong!

Fans enjoy the game for a great many reasons, including:

• The ability to design, customize, and perfect their decks
• The tremendous variety of unique cards and interactions
• The game's beautiful fantasy artwork
• The fun of buying, selling, and trading rare cards
• An ever-changing metagame as players discover new strategies and combos

It's also no exaggeration to say that mastering Magic develops valuable, real-world career skills. This incredible game can help you become a better programmer, learn to use advanced statistical tools, understand financial modeling and investing, and even study for the GRE. This course will take your game to the next level and simultaneously provide experience you can use on your LinkedIn resume!

Instruction includes a weekly 90-min lecture and a 1-hour discussion. Lectures focus on building academic skills through MtG-inspired examples, while discussion centers on skills used in MtG. There will be 30 mins of free play following each lecture, and 60 mins after discussion.

Grades are on the Pass/Not-Pass scale, based on a series of weekly assignments & readings. Students must complete all assignments to receive a “Pass”.

• 6 short writing assignments, about one single-spaced page each
• 3 in-class quizzes
• 1 group term project

Exceptions may be granted in case of severe illness, family emergency, etc.

Lastly, students will need to purchase their own cards to participate in tournaments. This is optional, but strongly encouraged. We will run a “sealed league” during the semester using Standard-legal sets, keeping track of match statistics every week. Students will start out with 6 booster packs, adding one pack per week until the end of the term. This helps keep the card pool accessible, and ensures all students are on even footing. No one likes playing against the nerd who sold their car to pay for their Vintage cardboard addiction!

How to Enroll:

The course is intended for new players, although more experienced players are also welcome. There will be something for players of all skill levels from Day 1.

We are shooting for 64 students this time around (it's a magic number for tournaments!). Enrollment will be strictly first-come, first-served. Please be advised -- this is a 2-unit course and we will be doing real work during the semester. You will probably find easier units elsewhere. Then again, if you're up to the workload, this is one of the most fun ways to advance your real-world skills!

Course Contact: rdcrabbs AT


Faculty Sponsor: Hank Ibser

Time & Location:

Section 1[?]
Robert Crabbs
Kyle Lian
Bernice Wong
64170 BarrowsTuTh 6p-8p1/19started87489 (lower)
87732 (upper)

Uploaded Files:

Syllabus: MtG DeCal 2016 - Course Syllabus v3.pdfNov 2562kbAdobe PDF (Viewer)View Download

Course info last modified December 18, 2015. This page has been viewed 3048 times.

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