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Buckinghamshire New University: Advanced 3D Animation - Distance Learning

Institution Buckinghamshire New University
Department School of Creative And Digital Industries
Telephone 0330 123 2023
Study type Taught


If you have an undergraduate degree, some industry experience or a genuine love for Animation, you could take your career to the next level with this advanced course. On graduating you’ll be able to showcase an industry-standard animated short or showreel, which could help you join this ever-growing industry.

Experience of 3D software such as Maya is highly recommended.

Why study at Buckinghamshire New University? This course will offer you the chance to focus on creating high quality animation or animated sequence. You will be supported by knowledgeable lecturers and industry professionals while also taking advantage of our excellent resources.

The standard of animation at BNU is very high and this is reflected in the proportion of our students who go on to work successfully in the industry afterwards. We also run small classes which ensures that students gain meaningful access to our tutors.

You’ll also be invited to join online groups where you will be able to meet the other students taking our animation, visual effects, game art and visualisation courses, both MA and BA, online and attendance. These help to foster a sense of community and are also places where extra-curricular collaborative projects, such as game jams, take place. You will also be able to meet our alumni in these broader forums. All forums are moderated by the lecturers.

What facilities can I use? Although this course is online, you’ll still be able to access a range of specialist software and hardware, including: * Maya

  • ZBrush

  • Nuke

  • Mari

  • Substance Suite

  • Marvellous Designer

  • Adobe Creative Suite

  • Cinema 4D

  • Redshift Renderer

  • Shotgun

  • Houdini

  • Houdini Engine

  • Unreal Engine

  • Megascans Asset library

  • Advanced Skeleton

  • Ziva

This can all be accessed online through our virtualised computer system which will provide you with all the necessary hardware power to complete the course no matter where you are based. Our licences can also be accessed and used on your own machines by using our AppsAnywhere service.

What will I study? On this degree you will cover abroad range of topics, from researching into the field of animation, looking at both historical and contemporary practice, to drafting a short sequence of your own derived from your research findings. This will help you to establish and personalise the overall direction of your studies and practice.

You will also look at the wider production pipeline needed for an animation, covering areas such as: - modelling

  • rigging

  • texturing

  • lighting

  • rendering

You’ll also look at how to convey effective storytelling and emotion in a visual narrative as achieving this is one of the hardest challenges which animators face. Lastly, you’ll enter the preproduction phase before moving on to the production phase for your main project. This may be a continuation of your short sequence or something new and may be done individually or in a group.

How will I be taught? We understand that to succeed on a creative course, you must be hands-on with learning. That’s why this degree is 70% practical work and 30% will involve reflective learning journals, presentations and academic reports.

You’ll be given access to synchronous sessions each week with a lecturer who will be online throughout the session except for the final production project. Normally these will begin with a group seminar and then break into 1:1 sessions. Sometimes these seminars will be used for presentations and review, in a manner that mimics the dailies process in industry. In addition to this there will be some lecture content made available by video to help guide you through the unit. You'll use an online learning platform, where you work through a set of recorded lectures which will be an average of 10 minutes long. You will be able to submit your work for asynchronous formative review which will be delivered as a video commentary on your work.


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