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Postgraduate

MA 3D Computer Animation

Screenshot of 3d Computer Animation of character performing martial arts
Ivanina Kasapova, 2020 MA 3D Computer Animation, London College of Communication, UAL
College
London College of Communication
Start date
September 2022
Course length
1 year 3 months full-time (45 weeks across a four-term model)

MA 3D Computer Animation is a practice-led course that explores both the theory and practice of digital 3D animation in film, television, games and interactive applications. With new and emerging technologies changing how we make, understand and experience animation, you'll be encouraged to push boundaries and explore the practices of animation from a variety of critical and professional perspectives.

Applications closed 2021/22

We are no longer accepting applications for 2021/22 entry to this course. Applications for 2022/23 entry will open in Autumn 2021.

Open Evenings

The next Open Day for this course will be announced soon.

Online Open Day

(Recorded March 2021)

Programme Director, Susi Wilkinson, gives an overview of studying MA 3D Computer Animation at London College of Communication.

Student work

  • 1.jpg
    , Animation by Zhuoqun Wang
  • beth.jpg
    , Animation by Beth Doherty
  • blockingpose06.jpg
    , Animation by Beth Doherty
  • Iva-Kasapova.png
    Iva Kasapova, Iva Kasapova, 2020. MA 3D Computer Animation, London College of Communication, UAL. 2020 MA 3D Computer Animation, London College of Communication, UAL
  • Junru-Tao.png
    Junru Tao, Junru Tao, 2020. MA 3D Computer Animation, London College of Communication, UAL. 2020 MA 3D Computer Animation, London College of Communication, UAL
  • img_3377.jpg
  • Luca-Bowles.jpg
    , Luca Bowles, 2020. MA 3D Computer Animation, London College of Communication, UAL. 2020 MA 3D Computer Animation, London College of Communication, UAL | Photograph: Luca Bowles
  • Marianna-Karapanagioti.jpg
    Marianna Karapanagioti, Marianna Karapanagioti, 2020. MA 3D Computer Animation, London College of Communication, UAL. 2020 MA 3D Computer Animation, London College of Communication, UAL
  • working-in-maya-2.jpg

Student voices: Shraddha Mithinti

Shradda tells us about her final year animation, inspired by a trip to Kew Gardens.

The Kiss

The Kiss is an animated short film by Anto Frederic.

Student voices

Facilities

  • Student reading a book in between two bookshelves in the Library
    Students in the Digital Space. London College of Communication, UAL. Photograph: Alys Tomlinson
    Digital Space

    The Digital Space is an open-plan, creative hub with computers set up with specialist software.

  • A 3D model of a wolf produced by an animation student.
    Image © Lewis Bush
    Animation and Games  

    Discover the range of resources on offer to students studying Animation and Games Design.

  • Students using the computers in the Digital Space
    Student in Creative Technology Lab, 2020. London College of Communication, UAL. Photograph: Tim Boddy
    Creative Technology Lab  

    A multi-purpose space that supports students with: Creative Coding, Physical Computing, Projection Mapping, Games, and Virtual Reality.

Course overview

In an era of unparalleled opportunities for skilled visual players and sequential image-makers, you will create, explore and play with 3D digital technologies and develop a specialist personal practice.

The animation industry is rapidly evolving, with new developments in real-time animation and immersive digital world-building.

Through experimentation and learning of advanced technical skills, you’ll instigate innovative approaches driven by critical understanding and self-reflection.

During the course, you’ll create 3D computer animation sequences and assets, both individually and as part of creative teams comprising students from different media disciplines.

Collaborative work forms an important part of the course philosophy and you'll work with external industry partners as well as other courses within LCC such as MA Games Design, MA Illustration and Visual Media, MA Visual Effects and MA Animation.

The course curriculum covers to two main areas:

  • ​Animation for Film and Motion Graphics

In this area, you'll learn the skills to be a specialist in the latest technologies within animation, lighting and compositing.

Building on the principles of animation, cinematography and film language, you’ll explore filmic storytelling and characterisation within short animated sequences, motion graphics and/or short films.

  • Animation for Games and Immersive Storytelling

You’ll learn specialist 3D animation techniques such as real-time animation, environment design, interactive design and 360° storytelling.

What can you expect?

As well as developing skills in 3D space narrative and interpreting ideas for the flat screen, you’ll also explore the differences between producing linear storytelling and viewer-led interactive experiences.

You’ll be encouraged to work across multiple formats, exploring how animation can be used in different contexts such as in the digital media, online, mobile and interactive games and installations, virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR).

Work experience and opportunities

Live industry projects, workshops and professionals masterclasses, will introduce you to a field that’s constantly growing and developing, giving you skills for work in a collaborative and/or independent practice.

Through engagement with a range of industry professionals and permanent teaching staff, you’ll have access to workshops that build in complexity from intermediate to advanced levels across 3D computer animation skills.

Academic contextualisation, criticality and curiosity underpin studio practice, while collaboration across courses and programmes within the Screen School are encouraged.

The course supports progression to research at MPhil/PhD level as well as to advanced self-directed practice.

Mode of Study

MA 3D Computer Animation is in Full Time mode which runs for 45 weeks over 15 months. You will be expected to commit 40 hours per week to study.

Contact us

For queries relating to the Coronavirus outbreak, read our Coronavirus guidance for prospective students.

To register your interest and receive information and updates about studying at UAL, please complete this form.

If you can’t find the information you’re looking for or to ask a question, please contact us.

Course units

MA 3D Computer Animation is delivered across four terms, starting in September and finishing in December the year after. Incorporating a summer break, this is a one-year full-time course (45 taught weeks), delivered over 15 months.

You will respond to briefs that are set to test the learning in the units described below. Each course is divided into units, which are credit-rated. The minimum unit size is 20 credits. The MA course structure involves five units, totalling 180 credits.

Autumn, Term 1

3D Computer Animation Fundamentals (40 credits)
Design for Animation, Narrative Structures and Film Language (20 Credits)

In Term 1, you will explore a range of both technical and conceptual approaches to 3D computer animation and real-time motion graphics.

Work will explore technologies and processes by producing short-form animation across the 3D computer animation spectrum to set briefs.

You'll also engage in a programme of theoretical seminars that explore the cinematic and interactive underpinning of this practice.

This phase is the technical and conceptual basis for the subsequent phases of the course.

Spring and Summer, Terms 2 and 3

Advanced and Experimental 3D Computer Animation Techniques (40 credits)
Collaborative Unit (20 Credits)

In Terms 2 and 3, you will engage in experimental 3D computer animation processes and practice, developing your distinct visual voice.

This is underpinned by a critical study that will significantly expand your understanding of what themes animation can address in a critical context and across interdisciplinary fields.

You will experiment widely across a technical programme introducing you to various 3D computer animation techniques.

These techniques focus on pushing the boundary of what 3D computer animation can deliver, exploring formats from flat screen to AR and VR, and potential interactive approaches and games.

Autumn, Term 4

Final Major Project and Thesis (60 Credits)

In Term 4, you will use the knowledge, skills and experience gained on the course so far, and synthesise these through the production of a collaborative interdisciplinary or self-directed longer final major project and associated thesis.

The thesis is a 5000-word reflective report should show that the design and production processes carried out in your final major project exhibit the required characteristics for a Masters degree.

It should discuss the decisions that have been made and placed in the context of current industry practice and research in the area and reflect on the process and the final multimedia content to identify its strengths and weaknesses.

It is an opportunity for you to demonstrate the depth of critical understanding of your field and to show that you can objectively analyse your own work.

Learning and teaching methods

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Critiques
  • Workshops 

Assessment methods

  • Portfolios
  • Written essays
  • Research projects
  • Presentations
  • Critiques
  • Exhibition 

How to apply

Opportunities for all

We are committed to making university education an achievable option for a wider range of people and to supporting all of our students in achieving their potential both during and after their courses.

We welcome applications from people with disabilities. If you have a disability (e.g. mobility difficulties, sensory impairments, medical or mental health conditions or Asperger’s syndrome) we strongly encourage you to contact us on disability@arts.ac.uk or +44 (0)20 7514 6156 so that we can plan the right support for you. All enquiries are treated confidentially. To find out more, visit our Disability & Dyslexia webpages.

Entry requirements

An applicant will normally be considered for admission if they have achieved an educational level equivalent to an honours degree in either animation, illustration, visual communication, graphic design or closely related subject, and present a portfolio of moving-image work. However, we do not exclude candidates who have graduated from other less strongly aligned disciplines.

This educational level may be demonstrated by:

  • Honours degree (named above);
  • Possession of equivalent qualifications;
  • Prior experiential learning, the outcome of which can be demonstrated to be equivalent to formal qualifications otherwise required;
  • Or a combination of formal qualifications and experiential learning which, taken together, can be demonstrated to be equivalent to formal qualifications otherwise required.

APEL (Accreditation of Prior Learning)

Applicants who do not meet these course entry requirements may still be considered in exceptional cases. The course team will consider each application that demonstrates additional strengths and alternative evidence. This might, for example, be demonstrated by:

  • Related academic or work experience
  • The quality of the personal statement
  • A strong academic or other professional reference
  • OR a combination of these factors

Each application will be considered on its own merit but we cannot guarantee an offer in each case.

Language requirements

All classes are conducted in English. If English is not your first language, we strongly recommend you let us know your English language test score in your application. If you have booked a test or are awaiting your results, please indicate this in your application. When asked to upload a CV as part of your application, please include any information about your English test score.

  • IELTS 6.5 (or equivalent) is required, with a minimum of 5.5 in each of the four skills.
  • If your first language is not English, you can check you have achieved the correct IELTS level in English on the Language Requirements page.

For further details regarding international admissions and advice please visit the International Applications page.

Selection criteria

Offers will be made based on the following selection criteria, which applicants are expected to demonstrate:

  • Sufficient prior knowledge and experience of and/or potential in animation practice to be able to successfully complete the programme of study, and have an academic or professional background in a relevant subject
  • Knowledge of visual culture and an ability to engage in critical discussion

Making your application

All applications will be reviewed by the course team who will consider key elements when making a decision on your suitability to join the course:

  • Firstly they will look at your qualifications and transcript (or projected results)
  • Secondly, they will review your personal statement and portfolio
  • There is no requirement for an academic or professional reference

Start your application now

The online application can be saved as you fill it out, so you don’t need to complete it all at once. You will also have the chance to review all the information and make any necessary amendments before you press submit.

Deferring your place

This course accepts requests from offer holders to defer their place for one academic year. Deferral requests are granted on a first-come, first-served basis until all deferral places are filled, or a deadline has been reached, whichever is sooner. Read our Admissions Policy for details, including how to request a deferral and by when.

Required information for postgraduate course applications

Before you apply, please take time to read the guidance below. You will be asked to provide the following items and upload documents when completing the online application form:

  • Personal details (including full name; date of birth; nationality; permanent address and English language level)
  • Current and/or previous education and qualification details
  • Employment history
  • CV
  • Personal statement

Extra information required for applications to this course:

  • Portfolio
  • Video task

External Student Transfer Policy

If you are currently studying at another institution and have successfully completed 60 credits in the equivalent units/modules on your current PG course and wish to continue your studies at London College of Communication, you can apply to transfer.

The Admissions Tutor will consider applications on a case by case basis, subject to places being available. You must apply directly to the course via the course webpage as early as possible.

Further information about the external student transfer policy can be found on the Office for Students Information page.

CV

Please provide a CV detailing your education, qualifications and any relevant work or voluntary experience. If English is not your first language it is important that you also include in your CV details of your most recent English language test score.

Personal statement advice

You will be asked to complete a personal statement describing why you want to study on MA 3D Computer Animation. You will be expected to demonstrate critical knowledge of and enthusiasm for the subject, and a well-articulated rationale for joining the course.

The personal statement is a very important part of your application and should demonstrate to the course team that you are interested in the subject and that you have thought very carefully about why you wish to study on the course.

Ensure that your personal statement it is well written, clear and free of any spelling mistakes. It is your chance to impress the course team by showing a strong interest in the subject, demonstrating what you feel you would bring to the course, your appreciation of what the course can offer you and how you feel it might help you in the future.

This can be demonstrated through work experience, previous studies and your personal experience.

Application deadline

12 January 2022 or 13 April 2022

For all postgraduate courses at UAL there are 2 rounds of applications. This is to ensure equal consideration and fairness for all of our applicants. You must apply by 12 January 2022 for Round 1 or by 13 April 2022 for Round 2. We recommend you submit your application as early as possible before these deadlines, to allow the Admissions team to resolve any queries and progress your application as quickly as possible.

When you'll hear from us

This course receives a high volume of applications. We need to make sure that we give all applications equal consideration, so the course team will review them in two rounds, after each application deadline date. This means you won’t hear from us about any next steps until after the relevant application deadline date. Outcomes for Round 1 will be released by (at the latest) end of March and outcomes for Round 2 will be released by end of June 2022.

Remember to check the outcome of your application in the UAL Portal. If you apply in Round 1 and don’t hear back from us, we will consider your application within Round 2.

Find out more about what happens after you apply.

All applications will be reviewed by the course team who will consider key elements when making a decision on your suitability to join the course:

  • Firstly they will look at your qualifications and transcript (or projected results)
  • Secondly, they will review your personal statement and portfolio
  • There is no requirement for an academic or professional reference

Start your application now

There are 2 ways international students can apply to a postgraduate course:

Read our immigration and visa information to find out if you need a visa to study at UAL.

You can only apply to the same course once per year. Any duplicate applications will be withdrawn.  Read the UAL international application advice for further information on how to apply.

Deferring your place

This course accepts requests from offer holders to defer their place for one academic year. Deferral requests are granted on a first-come, first-served basis until all deferral places are filled, or a deadline has been reached, whichever is sooner. Read our Admissions Policy for details, including how to request a deferral and by when.

Required information for postgraduate course applications

Before you apply, please take time to read the guidance below. You will be asked to provide the following items and upload documents when completing the online application form:

  • Personal details (including full name; date of birth; nationality; permanent address and English language level)
  • Current and/or previous education and qualification details
  • Employment history
  • CV
  • Personal statement

Please note: we will ask you for copies of certain documents (for example, English language qualification/certificate and copies of any previous UK study visas).

For further advice on how to apply please visit the UAL International Application page.

Extra information required for applications to this course:

  • Portfolio

External Student Transfer Policy

If you are currently studying at another institution and have successfully completed 60 credits in the equivalent units/modules on your current PG course and wish to continue your studies at London College of Communication, you can apply to transfer.

The Admissions Tutor will consider applications on a case by case basis, subject to places being available. You must apply directly to the course via the course webpage as early as possible.

Further information about the external student transfer policy can be found on the Office for Students Information page.

Immigration history check

Whether you are applying through a UAL representative or direct application you will need to complete an Immigration History check. If you do not complete the Immigration History Check we will not be able to proceed with your application.

CV

Please provide a CV detailing your education, qualifications and any relevant work or voluntary experience. If English is not your first language it is important that you also include in your CV details of your most recent English language test score.

Personal statement advice

You will be asked to complete a personal statement describing why you want to study on MA 3D Computer Animation. You will be expected to demonstrate critical knowledge of and enthusiasm for the subject, and a well-articulated rationale for joining the course.

The personal statement is a very important part of your application and should demonstrate to the course team that you are interested in the subject and that you have thought very carefully about why you wish to study on the course.

Ensure that your personal statement it is well written, clear and free of any spelling mistakes. It is your chance to impress the course team by showing a strong interest in the subject, demonstrating what you feel you would bring to the course, your appreciation of what the course can offer you and how you feel it might help you in the future.

This can be demonstrated through work experience, previous studies and your personal experience.

Application deadline

12 January 2022 or 13 April 2022

For all postgraduate courses at UAL there are 2 rounds of applications. This is to ensure equal consideration and fairness for all of our applicants. You must apply by 12 January 2022 for Round 1 or by 13 April 2022 for Round 2. We recommend you submit your application as early as possible before these deadlines, to allow the Admissions team to resolve any queries and progress your application as quickly as possible.

When you'll hear from us

This course receives a high volume of applications. We need to make sure that we give all applications equal consideration, so the course team will review them in two rounds, after each application deadline date. This means you won’t hear from us about any next steps until after the relevant application deadline date. Outcomes for Round 1 will be released by (at the latest) end of March and outcomes for Round 2 will be released by end of June 2022.

Remember to check the outcome of your application in the UAL Portal. If you apply in Round 1 and don’t hear back from us, we will consider your application within Round 2.

Find out more about what happens after you apply.

After you apply

Communicating with you

After you have successfully submitted your application online, you will receive an email confirming your application and providing your login details for the UAL Applicant Portal. Please add @arts.ac.uk to your contacts to ensure that you do not miss any important updates re: your application to UAL.

Please log into the portal, as this is where we will send you important updates and requests, and you can contact us with any questions you may have about your application.

What happens next

Portfolio and interview information

All applicants will be expected to submit an electronic portfolio of a maximum of 20 images as part of their application. At application stage, we are as excited to see a portfolio of interactive materials that have a sense of sequential play, as we are to see an accomplished portfolio of animation work.

  • Your portfolio should have some examples of image-led and visual work from either education or professional practice, with a focus on character performance and/or world-building.
  • It should contain an animated showreel of minimum 60 seconds in length. Please state your role (artist, animator, editor, sound, story, background) and techniques you have used.
  • Include a minimum of five projects and self-initiated projects are also encouraged.
  • If you have links to online projects or media assets, please note these in your CV.

As a student on the course, you will have been selected for a specific interest that you've demonstrated within your portfolio. This could be a strong animation portfolio that indicates interest in narrative and performance within feature-length animation, or an accomplished portfolio of animation work that indicates a commitment to focus on personal development through a further course of study.

Applicants are usually interviewed by the course team before a place can be offered. Interviews will be held online, and details will be sent via the UAL Portal.

Video task

  • We'd like you to submit a 2-3 minute video to help us learn more about you.
  • Please speak clearly in English and face the camera.
  • Your video task is submitted along with your portfolio via PebblePad. Read our guidance for more information about how to submit your video task and the file types we accept.

As part of your video task please respond to the following direction:

We would like you to identify one project from your portfolio which challenged you and your understanding of 3D Computer Animation. Explain how this experience has inspired you to apply to MA 3D Computer Animation at London College of Communication.

How we notify you of the outcome of your application

You will receive the outcome of your application through the UAL Applicant Portal.

Requesting feedback

This course receives a high number of applications, and we can’t provide feedback to everyone who is unsuccessful. We can only provide feedback after you’ve had an interview.

If you would like to request feedback – please email lcc.ukeu@arts.ac.uk if you are a Home or EU applicant, or lcc.international@arts.ac.uk if International. We are only able to provide feedback to you directly, or to someone you have told us in writing can receive it on your behalf.

Fees and funding

Home fee

£11,220 per course

This fee is correct for 2021/22 entry and is subject to change for 2022/23 entry. Tuition fees may increase in future years for new and continuing students on courses lasting more than one year. For this course, you can pay tuition fees in instalments.

Home fees are currently charged to UK resident nationals. However, the rules are complex and you can find out more on our tuition fees pages.

From 2021/22 entry, most EU students will be charged the International tuition fee rate, although this may depend on your individual circumstances. If you started your course in October 2020 or earlier, you’ll continue to pay Home (UK) fees for the duration of your course. Read more advice for EU students on our Brexit information webpage

International fee

£22,920 per course

This fee is correct for 2021/22 entry and is subject to change for 2022/23 entry. Tuition fees for international students may increase by up to 5% in each future year of your course. For this course, you can pay tuition fees in instalments.

International fees are currently charged to students from countries outside of the UK. However, the rules are complex and more information can be found on our tuition fees pages.

From 2021/22 entry, most EU students will be charged the International tuition fee rate, although this may depend on your individual circumstances. If you started your course in October 2020 or earlier, you’ll continue to pay Home (UK) fees for the duration of your course. Read more advice for EU students on our Brexit information webpage

Scholarship search

Careers and alumni

Careers include:

  • Visual Effects/Animation Runner
  • Junior Matchmove Artist
  • Junior Animator for Games/Film/TV
  • Junior Layout Artist
  • Junior Previs Animator/Shot Creator