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3D Animation

On our ground-breaking MA in 3D Animation online course you will benefit from impressive professional lecturer expertise and a strong industry network, helping you to build a successful career in the animation industry.

Qualification: MA

Credits: 180

Study mode: Distance learning

Location: High Wycombe Campus

Duration: 18 months

Start date: September

Is this course for me?

Developed in consultation with the industry and closely informed by recently published 'Skill Set' Animation guidelines, our fully online animation MA is a unique blend of practical and academic content that can be undertaken anywhere in the world.

You will be trained as a skilled professional 3D animator with unique opportunities to explore theoretical perspectives that can help to shape and improve your portfolio of animation work.

This unique master's in 3D animation is designed to enhance the skills and knowledge of animators and digital artists working, or looking to work, in the animation and visual effects sector.

You will gain a broad range of complementary digital skills, as well as a deeper understanding of your subject area, helping to boost your career prospects in this growing industry.

Our dedicated and supportive course team have extensive industry track records, as well as ongoing involvement in a range of project and consultancy activity, which helps ensure you gain the skills and knowledge required by the animation and visual effects industries.

Whether you are a professional animator looking to boost your skills and knowledge, a recent undergraduate from a related discipline looking to take your studies further, or a 'digital artist' seeking to broaden your portfolio of creative digital skills, this course is for you.

How to apply

Once you have completed the application form, please return it to us by email.

For more details on how to apply, visit our admissions section and select the Postgraduate and Professional Applications segment.

What will this course cover?

According to a recent report from Creative Skillset, ‘30% of animation employers now report a skills gap within their current workforce’. Our online MA in 3D Animation will help bridge this gap and give you the vital skills and knowledge to succeed in the sector.

We will equip you with the technical skills required to work in the film, TV and games industries, and to develop original creative content. You will also gain a critical awareness of current problems and challenges facing the animation industries, with an opportunity to conduct your own research in this exciting and rapidly developing field.

This 3D animation course will help you apply your own research to professional situations, in both a practical and theoretical context. You will also gain a practical understanding of how established techniques of research and enquiry are used to advance and develop knowledge in both your own field, and other related fields of academic study and employment.

A strong focus is placed on character and creature animation in a digital environment, with a view to building an impressive portfolio of work that will help you to enhance your career prospects.

You will study this animation programme by distance learning and will be fully supported throughout the course.

Why choose this course?

  • You will benefit from a unique blend of practical and academic content, giving you the specialist skills you need to progress in your career.
  • We place a strong emphasis on character and creature animation, with a focus on cutting edge technical and creative skills.
  • Our online lecturers bring with them a wealth of experience, working as animators on feature films such as the Harry Potter series, The Chronicles of Narnia and the Lion King.
  • We have strong links and contacts with key industry partners, including contacts at many of the relevant post-production/animation houses in Soho, London, such as FrameStore and Cinesite. We also have an education/industry partnership with leading motion capture company, Centroid, based at Pinewood Studios, England, along with good contacts in California studios with Walt Disney and Pixar.
  • Our MA in 3D Animation is delivered exclusively online, allowing you to fit in your studies around your personal and professional commitments and study at a pace and time that suits you, with no need to attend the University. You will also have free access to industry software.

Expand all module descriptions

Year One

  • Animation 1 - Locomotion and Mechanics
  • Animation 2 - Character Performance
  • Animation 3 - Animals & Creatures
  • Animation 4 - Final Project & Demo Reel
  • Research Techniques and Dissertation

How will I be taught and assessed?

The programme will be exclusively delivered by distance learning, using our online virtual learning environment: The Blackboard Collaborate portal.

You will benefit from a blend of online tutorials and seminars. You will also receive highly detailed and customised feedback, including a bespoke personal critique of your work.

The teaching and assessments prioritises a ‘hands-on’, real world approach to learning and online learning resources, with extensive use made of video clips and other rich media to support the delivery of the programme.

All module assessment is coursework, rather than exam- based. Assessment submission and lecturer feedback will be exclusively delivered online, enabling you to readily refer back to tailored feedback comments that will progressively inform each piece of written and practical work you complete during the course.

What are the entry requirements?

Applicants are expected to hold a minimum of 2:2 degree classification from an animation degree programme, or a closely related discipline. We will also accept applications from industry professionals who can demonstrate sufficient insight and skills appropriate for study at postgraduate level. There may be opportunities for applicants to receive Accreditation for Prior Experiential Learning.

All students will need to submit an online portfolio of work to support their application.

All prospective students will be interviewed (either face to face or online) to ascertain suitability for this programme.

For further details of our international English entry requirements, please visit our international pages.

How much does it cost?

Fees for September 2015 to August 2016 entry
Home and EU students: £6,750 per year.

Fees for September 2016 to August 2017 entry
Home and EU students: £6,750 per year.

For information on fees and finance, please view our fees and funding section.

Fees quoted are for the next intake and are subject to change. Fee costs for subsequent years are subject to rise with inflation or course delivery costs.

Benefit from 10% discount off your tuition fees - deadline to apply now extended to 31 August.

How do I apply?

To apply for this course, please use our application form.

Once you have completed the application form, please return it to us by email:

or post it to:

Admissions and Recruitment
Buckinghamshire New University
Queen Alexandra Road
High Wycombe
HP11 2JZ

For more information for home and EU students, see our postgraduate applications section.

If you are an international student, visit our international students section.

How will you help me prepare for my future career?

The animation industry is expanding worldwide. 3D animation is everywhere now, on TV, in the movie theatres, on your smart phone, on the web, and in games. The skills you will learn on this programme are transferable to any kind of animation.

By the end of the programme, you'll have created a strong demo reel and gained a broad range of complementary digital skills, helping to boost your career prospects in this growing industry.