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Digital Animation

BA (Hons)

Undergraduate degree - single honours

  • UCAS codes: Institution B20, Course DA11 or DA12 (with professional practice year)

Key facts

Award
BA (Hons) Digital Animation
School
Bath School of Art and Design
Campus or location
Sion Hill
Course length
Three years full-time, or four years full-time with professional placement year. Part-time available.
UCAS codes
Institution Code: B20
Course Code: DA11
Campus Code: A,BSU

Entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes.

View typical offers for more information.

Develop the skills you need to compete in the fast-moving world of digital animation.*

  • Prepare yourself for a career in animation with the range of skills you need to flourish in the industry.
  • Experience and analyse the latest technologies and approaches to animation.
  • Enhance your employment prospects with communication, time-management and teamwork skills.

*New for 2018 entry, subject to final approval

The scope for digital animation has exploded in recent years, with the continuing development and popularity of 2D and 3D computer games, animated film, mobile apps, science visualisation, public art and virtual reality.

As 3D viewing and augmented reality technology continues to develop, animation professionals will need to be adaptable and resilient to emerging trends and changes in this fluid, futuristic landscape.

Digital Animation aims to prepare you for a professional career in animation, by exposing you to a range of contexts and skills that will equip you to work in a range of industries. By analysing the latest technologies and approaches to animation, you'll look to the future of film-making and moving image viewer consumption in a city that prides itself on being a creative technology and entrepreneurial hub.

What you'll learn

Overview

Digital Animation explores the changing face of a popular art form: bringing images to life.

You'll explore the fundamentals of animation practice within the latest technological advances and trends, and, over the three years, learn core skills that will aid you in becoming an employable graduate.

These fundamental skills will include drawing, image making crafts, computer graphics, stop-frame animation, coding, 3D modelling, 2D motion graphics and compositing.

You will test these skills through a variety of modern applications such as outdoor projection, virtual reality, augmented reality, film, TV, online video, computer games, the web and mobile apps.

The combination of these technical skills with research into the contexts, history and theory of animation and narrative practice will ensure both practical ability and critical literacy in our Digital Animation graduates.

Course structure

Year one
You'll practise visual research methods and animation fundamentals, including sketchbooks, storyboards, flipbooks, video and photography. You'll be introduced to a number of software-based practices including 3D computer modelling, computer coded animation, compositing and editing. All modules will include research methods to ensure contextualisation and historical knowledge.
 
Year two
In the second year, your technical and conceptual knowledge is expanded with more complicated production methods and the introduction of modern-day contexts and techniques (such as outdoor projection mapping and virtual reality). These will give you the opportunity to experience your work in these formats and learn about the challenges that each presents. You will deepen your knowledge of coding through interactivity, explore character animation, and consider narrative and story on a deeper level.
 
Year three
In your final year, you'll take a more self-directed approach as you decide on your specialist areas of practice, or to remain broad. You'll explore industry-based projects as appropriate for an Art or a Design context (and understand the difference). You will be encouraged to seek collaboration opportunities, and explore the future directions of animation via a dissertation. Finally, a major project will allow you to create a larger piece of work (or a portfolio of smaller projects), all forming part of a cohesive animation showreel demonstrating your depth of skill, knowledge and innovation.

How will I be assessed?

A range of summative assessment tasks will be used to assess your understanding in each module. You’ll deliver a varied and balanced collection of artefacts including (but not limited to) showreels, portfolios, interactive stories and web apps. Project work is supported by contextual essays, reflective commentaries, sketchbooks, reports, pitches, presentations, debates and b/vlogs.

How will I be taught?

You’ll be taught through creative workshops, seminars and project sessions. These sessions are supported by individual and team tutorials throughout your degree programme.

In seminars you will be encouraged to critique and develop new ideas.

The course is supported by skilled technicians to guide you with technical problems and training.

You'll also experience theoretical lectures and have access to a visiting lecturer series.

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

The subject is taught in workshops and studios at Bath School of Art and Design, and in specialist facilities at our Newton Park Campus.

You'll have access to our:

  • Apple iMac suites
    Core modules are taught across several Apple iMac suites, each loaded with industry-standard digital design packages, prototyping tools and Integrated Development Environments.
  • Special facilities at Newton Park
    You'll have access to MediaWall, an 8m high video wall of 30 screens, located within the Commons building which is situated at the heart of our stunning Newton Park campus. You will be able to use to a range of specialist equipment such as VR headsets, outdoor projectors and electronic sensors.
  • Sion Hill Art and Design library.

Resources

  • Exclusive access to a collection of top-spec 4K Windows systems with CPU and GPU water cooling. These machines are networked to dedicated external storage and are offered with Unity, Unreal, 3ds Max, Blender and Spine installs.
  • Excellent e-learning provisions and a personal ‘software bible’.
  • An equipment loan service that offers a wide range of audiovisual production gear, interactive devices, and peripherals.

Opportunities

Study abroad

Students can apply for Erasmus+ and Exchange programme opportunities offered by Bath Spa University.

Work placements, industry links and internships

We have links with a variety of companies, including specialists in web and digital design, media and animation. During your animated Art and Design portfolio project, you will be specifically asked to engage with external clients and organisations. We are also developing links with a limited number of local animation industry courses.

Collaboration

You’ll have access to countless collaborative possibilities. Join forces with students studying animation, film-making, publishing, dance, music technology – the list goes on – to create unique and compelling digital work.

Competitions and awards

We encourage you to participate in regional game jams, animation festivals and sandbox events. A programme of internal ‘build’ competitions provide chances for you to test out new ideas and collaborate with peers or creatives pursuing other subject areas.

Projects

Project Pickaxe
An ongoing MineCraft build of our Newton Park campus.

MediaWall
Creative Computing students design and contribute to installations for MediaWall.

Serious Games
Collaborations with Bath Spa’s Institute of Education on multiple games that tackle real-world problems. These projects almost always combine aspects of animation, gaming and software development.

Fees

UK and EU students full time

2018/19 ENTRY

Course fees

Year 1 £9,250
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2020

Material fees

Year 1 £165
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2020

UK and EU students full time - with placement year

During the placement year, the fee is reduced to 20% of the full time fee. Otherwise, fees are the same as for full time study.

UK and EU students part time

2018/19 ENTRY

Course fees

Year 1 £4,625
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2020

Material fees

Year 1 £90
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2020

International students full time

2018/19 ENTRY

Course fees

Year 1 Published Jan 2018
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2020

Material fees

Year 1 £165
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2020

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

Students should be excited about the new possibilities for digital animation and have an enquiring mind.

Art or design experience is important, but other knowledge could also be useful. For example: engineering, maths, physics, computer games, product design and music technology.

Good quality qualifications in non-art and design subjects are welcome, if you can demonstrate your passion for the subject.

Typical offers

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. The main ones are listed below:

  • A Level - Grades BCC accepted, with a Grade B in Art, Design or a related subject preferred
  • BTEC Extended Diploma grades Distinction, Merit. Merit (DMM) in a related subject in addition to other qualifications or evidence of experience in a related subject
  • International Baccalaureate - A minimum of 27 points will be required in addition to a HL subject at grade 6 and evidence of further relevant experience
  • Access to HE courses - Typical offers for applicants with Access to HE will be the Access to HE Diploma or Access to HE Certificate (60 credits, 45 of which must be Level 3, including 30 at merit or higher)
  • Diploma in Foundation Studies (Art and Design) - Merit Grade is preferred in combination with the qualifications listed above. Applicants will be considered without this.

English Language Requirements for International and EU Applicants
IELTS 6.0 - for visa nationals, with a minimum score of IELTS 5.5 in each element.

How do I apply?

Ready to apply? Click the 'apply now' button in the centre of this page.

Need more guidance? Head to our how to apply webpages.

Interview and portfolio guidance

Applicants will be invited to bring a portfolio of creative work to interview, demonstrating their experience and interests. More details will be supplied to applicants upon invitation to interview.

Admissions service: +44 (0)1225 876 180
Email: admissions@bathspa.ac.uk
Course leader: Anthony Head
Email: a.head@bathspa.ac.uk

Website feedback to web@bathspa.ac.uk