BA 3D Animation and Games is a multi-disciplinary programme that focuses on the growth in independent gaming and computer art culture. You will operate in an active studio environment that brings together animation fundamentals with the latest developments in computer technology. This degree helps you to develop as a professional practitioner in this burgeoning field and to operate at the forefront of new and exciting movements in animation and game production.
Why study BA 3D Animation and Games at Middlesex?
At Middlesex, we passionately believe in the importance of formal and conceptual experimentation as a means to developing innovative approaches to animation and games. The work our students complete on this course is far reaching in form and content due to the collaborative studio culture that develops throughout the programme.
This specialised course is run in partnership with BA Animation so you can gain experience in traditional animation techniques such as 2D pixilation, stop motion and model making, as well as 3D computer animation. This critical foundation in the fundamentals of drawing and animation is coupled with practical and theoretical experimentations in gaming culture.
- The course is well resourced with fantastic facilities - you will have access to over 30 workstations equipped with an impressive array of the latest software including Maya, Z-Brush, After Effects, Flash, Final Cut Pro, Unity and Photoshop (see Studios tab above)
- The course has dedicated use of a Vicon Motion Capturesuite
- You will be taught and assessed by award-winning practitioners as well as academics with research interests in 3D graphics and games
- Unlike many equivalent degrees at other universities, on our degree we focus on improving your draughtsmanship, an important skill for professional animators
- Middlesex has very strong links with employers, with our industry partners sponsoring final year students and giving visiting lectures - recent speakers include Sidney Padua, CG character animator on Clash of the Titans and The Golden Compass, and Paul Chung, 3D Animation Director at Dreamworks and Warner Bros
- Teaching is focused on project based workshops supplemented by lectures and seminars so you can build a substantial portfolio of work
- At the end of your degree, you will exhibit your work at our Art and Design Degree Show and showcase your talents to creative industry employers at Motion Picture Company, Soho
Why not take a look at our related courses?
If you are interested in this course might also like to consider:
- Year 1
- From Pixel to Pencil (30 Credits) - Compulsory
- This module will introduce students to the core issues in the history of animation, and computer graphics. It will survey the changing practices, aesthetics and accompanying theories and enable the student to develop research skills and engage critically with the topic.
- Introduction to Animation (60 Credits) - Compulsory
- This Module aims to develop: - a personal approach to animation based on research, experimentation and the exploration of animation and it s relation to other areas of art and design practice from a historical, contemporary and cultural perspective. - communication skills to enable articulate discussion, analysis and evaluation of one s own work and that of others. - a basic understanding of film language, narrative and the technical processes of animation with the ability to apply that knowledge in the planning and creation of animation sequences.
- Visual Communication Workshops 1 (30 Credits) - Compulsory
- This module aims to provide an opportunity to explore a variety of different graphic media and understand their value as methods of visual communication. It aims to encourage an inventive and experimental response to the use of processes and materials in workshop areas chosen from photography, screenprint, etching, lino print, letterpress, 3D design, magazine design, life drawing, animation, electronic design and bookbinding. The module also aims to offer students the opportunity to learn a range of transferable practical and technical skills in art and design, through material handling, exploration of process, production and presentation. This module also aims to provide students with the opportunity to identify and develop a range of specific transferable skills which will enable each student to independently engage in effective learning at first degree level. Additionally the module aims to provide an initial framework for the acquisition of personal and career development skills. Both of these main aims are further developed at level 2 and 3 through subject specific modules.
- Year 2
- Animation Practice (60 Credits) - Compulsory
- This module aims to further develop: - improved technical skills coupled with an independent and challenging approach to animation problem solving. - increased confidence in articulate critical analysis, evaluation and discussion. - a deeper understanding of animation from a contemporary, historical and cultural perspective.
- Digital Cultures (30 Credits) - Compulsory
- This module aims to introduce students to a range of theories and concepts relating to games and play. It will further develop an understanding of academic research methods and will include an examination of psychological and cultural aspects of computer games. .
- Visual Communication Workshops 2 (30 Credits) - Compulsory
- This module aims to develop an understanding of specialist subject areas of creative practice through studio and workshop based activities. It enables students to develop individual approaches to visual communication and to begin to identify broad areas of interest that could form the basis for further specialist study on their programme. It will encourage the acquisition of intermediate specialist skills to work effectively in creative workshop areas chosen from; advertising, life drawing, publicity, editorial photography, publishing, magazine design, animation, etching and print, interactive and web design. The module aims to further develop skills in using creative processes analysing, evaluating visual pieces of work and presentation methods.
- Year 3
- 3D Animation and Games: Major Project and Portfolio (90 Credits) - Compulsory
- This Module aims to: reinforce, extend and consolidate previously acquired skills to achieve a confident, independent approach to 3D Animation practice at a professional level. cultivate highly articulate analysis, evaluation and discussion with an explicit critical understanding of current 3D Animation and Game practice. Identify potential career paths and anticipate the expectations of the 3D Animation and Game industries in the presentation of a graduation showreel, portfolio which may include playable games and levels and promotional material.
- Critical and Contextual Proposition (30 Credits) - Compulsory
- This module aims to enable students to identify and deliver a research project that is the product of sustained and creative engagement both with a range of research resources and an area of studio-practice. The module will consolidate skills of project identification, research organisation and development, time management, written and visual analysis and the presentation of a critical argument/thesis. The module further consolidates the development of skills required for autonomous learning.
What will you study?
On our course you will receive a thorough foundation in non-digital techniques whilst also exploring computer based approaches in general and computer gaming in particular. The course framework includes project based collaborations and integrated workshops that are designed to develop observational drawing and technological skills essential to all aspects of 3D computer animation production and computer games.
In the first two years of study, you will attend lectures and workshops in each of the core computer-based subjects. These two strands are supplemented and informed by lectures and seminars that address the historical and cultural background to animation, computer generated imagery and games. Each module of study is focused on producing creative work, gradually building a professional portfolio to assist your entry into the job market.
The final year of study is principally devoted to producing a substantial, game related animation. Graduating students have the opportunity to specialise in disciplines such as concept art, character design, modelling, animation, film-making/direction and game development.
You can find information about teaching and assessment on this course in the programme specification.
Teaching and learning
You will hone your skills through demonstrations and practical work in our studios and workshops, as well as lectures, seminars, tutorials, visits and your own personal research. You will also have the opportunity to attend presentations by professional animators and interview them to learn more about their work. You will give presentations, take part in class discussions and work on group projects, essays and practical assignments.
You may have the opportunity to do a short work placement with a design organisation.
You will show off your work through end-of-term exhibitions and showreel and portfolio presentations. You will also be assessed through practical projects, essays, reports, critiques, presentations, diaries and learning logs, as well as your participation in practical sessions. Some assignments are individual; for others you will work in a team.
We normally make offers on 220 UCAS tariff points. BTEC National Diploma/International Baccalaureate/Advanced Progression Diplomas/Level 3 Diploma in Art Design at equivalent tariff are also accepted. We accept Access to HE Diploma. Applications from mature candidates without formal qualifications are welcomed provided they can demonstrate appropriate levels of relevant ability and experience. We normally invite students to submit a portfolio and attend an interview.
International Entry Requirements
We accept the equivalent of the above from a recognised overseas qualification. To find out more about the requirements from your country, see further information under support in your country. For details of other equivalent requirements that Middlesex accepts see entry requirements.
English language requirements for international students
You must have competence in English language and we normally require Grade C GCSE or an equivalent qualification. The most common English Language requirements for international students are IELTS 6.0 (with minimum 5.5 in all four components) or TOEFL internet based 72 (with at least 17 in listening & writing, 20 in speaking and 18 in reading).
Middlesex also offers an Intensive Academic English course (Pre-Sessional) that ranges from 5-17 weeks depending on your level of English. Successful completion of this course would meet English language entry requirements.
You might also be interested in our 12 week long foundation course, which run three times a year, successful completion of which will guarantee a place on a nominated BA Honours degree.
The application is just the first step in our selection process, we also invite you to an interview and review your portfolio of art and design work.
We've created a short video to help you prepare for your portoflio:
The interview itself usually lasts about 15 minutes, but please allow an hour as this usually includes a tour of our facilities. We use the interview to allow us to find out more about you, to better understand your aspirations and interests and for you to learn more about us. The interview will explore why you want to study the subject with us, there will be no trick questions, so don't be too nervous.
What are the career options with a degree in 3D Animation and Games?
This degree will prepare you for an animation career focusing on 3D Animation and animation roles within the computer games industry.
Middlesex has strong links with art and design employers. Our industry partners sponsor final year students and give visiting lectures, and hundreds of art and design agencies, organisations and other employers attend our final year degree show each year.
All our staff work professionally in the animation industry. Some of their professional work can be seen on their websites, linked below.
Lecturer in Computer Animation
Joint Programme Leader of BA 3D Animation and Games
Sophie Mobbs is a computer animator with 10 years’ experience working as an animator in the games industry. She has worked on eight published games for PCs, consoles and handhelds, specialising in 3D in-game animation and Full Motion Video. Games she has contributed to include: Alien vs Predator (Rebellion), Chill, Dogs of War, Lego Island 2, Lego Island 3, Xtreme Stunts, Urban Freestyle (Silicon Dreams) Formula 1 2004, and Formula 1 2005 (Sony).
Sophie also has a published graphic novel and draws comics under a pseudonym for anthologies within the British Small Press. She teaches Maya and Flash and she is currently conducting PhD research in Body Language with Animation.
Senior Lecturer in Animation Theory and Research
Joint Programme Leader of BA 3D Animation and Games
Lecturer in 3D Animation and Games
Lecturer in 3D Animation and Games
In addition to our permanent academic team we have a regular programme of special lectures and masterclasses from animation professionals. Recent visiting lecturers include Merlin Crossingham, animation director of Wallace and Gromit at Aardman Animation; Kitty Taylor, BAFTA winning animation director of Charlie and Lola; Sidney Padua, CG character animator on Clash of the Titans and The Golden Compass; and Paul Chung, 3D Animation Director at Dreamworks and Warner Bros.
What are the studios and workshops like?
Our facilities are second to none and include:
- Industry standard technology including Maya, Adobe Creative Suite, Toon Boom and Final Cut Pro
- A £100k Motion Capture studio
- Excellent photographic studios
- State-of-the-art digital print out facilities
- Large numbers of studio and lab computers
- A brand new 80 workstation digital media workshop
- Traditional darkrooms
- An art and design library with over 75,000 books.
You can also hire specialised equipment for your assignments and there is a wealth of specialist technical help in our workshops from professionals who are dedicated to helping you achieve excellence.
Find out more about facilities in the School of Art and Design