Please note there are no vacancies on this course for September 2014

Student using lightbox to create 2D traditional animation

About this course

Accreditations and partnerships:

The UK Socrates-Erasmus Council
  • Entry year: 2014/15
  • Course code: W615
  • Applications: UCAS
  • Level: Undergraduate
  • Tariff points: 280
  • Department: Creative Industries
  • Campus: Bower Ashton
  • Duration: Three years full-time. Six years part-time.
  • Delivery: Part-time, Full-time
  • Study Abroad: Yes
  • Programme leader: John Parry


Animation at UWE is taught within the Bristol School of Animation on the Bower Ashton campus, which is linked to some of the UK's major animation practitioners. Bristol has a long tradition in the training of successful animators, many of whom have gone on to work as either independent producers/film makers, freelance practitioners or with leading animation production studios. Visits to studios are included in the course along with visits to festivals and regular screenings and guest speakers.

This is a creative animation course offering a broad range of skills and attributes designed to enable you to operate independently within the commercial environment after graduation. The contemporary animation industry requires creative thinkers who can operate flexibly within different aspects of animation production and associated activities. While animation has its roots within a cinematic and television environment its application now extends much further than these traditional formats. The challenge that animators now face is to address the application of new technologies and delivery systems such as interactive and hand held devices for games, narrative and none narrative forms and convergent media formats.

See examples of student work and the Bristol School of Animation here.

This video requires javascript to be enabled and flash installed to view.View this video on the youtube website

>> Structure

Student's view

We've had lots of opportunities to meet professional animators which has given me a far greater understanding of the industry that I hope to be working in after graduation. Daniel



During the course you are introduced to contemporary production processes and methods as well as fundamental principles of animation that may be applied within classical 2D and 3D, stop frame and computer (CG) animation. Film making, narrative and design for animation are central to the course.

There are Professional Practice and Work Experience modules at every level. Through these you will be introduced to and explore different career and further study options for Animation and the wider Creative Industries.

Year 1

This period of exploration and investigation provides you with an understanding of the principles of animation, in addition to the technical skills and knowledge that will enable you to further your creative development during Year two.

You will take a series of compulsory introductory modules that include:

  • Introduction to Animation
  • Exploring Practice in Animation
  • Creative Perspectives
  • Professional Practice and Work Experience 1

Year 2

You will develop the necessary skills for animation and film making, studying narrative structures, short form writing, cinematography, producing, production design, directing, sound design and production in small teams.

The Professional Practice and Work Experience module will consolidate your position as an emergent animator. In semester two you may choose to take an international exchange module.

You will study the following compulsory modules:

  • Developing Collaborative Practice in Animation
  • Critical Analysis
  • Professional Practice and Work Experience 2

Plus one of the following:

  • Developing Practice in Animation 2
  • International Exchange

Year 3

During the third year you will undertake a major self-directed programme of study culminating in a final production piece. This not only reflects your own individual area or research but allows you to test ideas and concepts in a completely professional environment in preparation for production. Your final production is completed to industry standard and as part of your studies you will be expected to prepare your portfolio and show reel within a format that enables you to further exploit the work within a broader commercial context. There is also an opportunity to work in team on collaborative work with institutions such as the Royal Academy of Music.

You will study the following compulsory modules:

  • Preparation for Extended Study in Animation
  • Extended Study in Animation
  • Independent Research Project
  • Professional Practice and Work Experience 3

Please note this structure is for the full-time course delivery only. For part-time delivery the same modules will be studied over a longer period and the structure will differ.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, practical workshops, projects and tutorials. European and international visits and field studies are key experiences on offer within the school.

For more details see our full glossary of learning and teaching terms.


A variety of assessment methods are used throughout the course including practical visual presentations, essays, reports and group presentations. Assessments of practical work focus on the processes that you have used to develop your ideas as well as the final piece; you are expected to record and present your research and developmental work for this purpose. Critical evaluations are also written to accompany major pieces of project work. In these you are expected to critique and analyse your own production work including your working methodologies, techniques and production management processes and relate them to the broader contexts of professional animation practice.

For more details see our full glossary of assessment terms.

>> Features

Special Features

Study facilities

Animation is taught at Bower Ashton campus predominantly on the fourth floor.

Find out more about the facilities and resources UWE has to offer.

>> Careers

Careers/further study

The UK has traditionally provided some of the very best film makers, designers and animators in the world. UWE has over the years been a major provider of this talent with successful graduates finding work as either independent producers/film makers, freelancer practitioners or with leading animation studios.

We have had students progress onto the MA animation here at UWE, and also at the NFTS. International students have returned home to pursue further study in education or gone further afield such as CalArts or Animation Sans Frontieres to continue their animation development.

Success stories

Animation students and graduates have achieved some great successes with their work being screened at major international film and animation festivals including Encounters Festival in Bristol, London International Animation Festival, Anifest in Czech Republic, Melbourne International Animation Festival and Stuttgart Animation Festival. Students have also achieved success at the BBC New Animation Awards and the Royal Television Society Awards.

See the latest success stories from the Bristol School of Animation.

Graduate destinations

Find out what our graduates are doing six months after graduating- includes examples of careers, employers and further study. Download a PDF from graduate destinations.

Creating employable students

UWE places strong emphasis on employability and skills development at every level. Through work placements, volunteering, study abroad and UWE initiatives which nurture talent and encourage innovation, students gain valuable real world experience and graduate with diverse career opportunities and a competitive place in the job market.

See great graduate prospects for further information.

Be inspired

Daniel successfully gained employment in the animation industry and has gone on to work as a freelance animator and compositer. Hear how Dan landed his dream job.

Hear about Tanya's experience on the course and some of the work opportunities generated by the Enterprise office.

See some of our students' work on flickr.

Useful links

Prospects - careers in the creative arts sector

The UWE careers service provides guidance and support throughout your studies and after you graduate in addition to useful resources, CV checks, career coaching and details of current job vacancies. They also source opportunities for students to gain work based experience. This support can be accessed face to face, over the telephone or online.

>> Fees


FeeCost (£) / per year
Full-time home / EU9,000
Full-time home ( ELQ )9,000
Full-time home / EU placement1,125
Part-time home / EU (per 15 credits)1,125
Full-time offshore9,000
Full-time offshore placement1,125
Part-time offshore (per 15 credits)1,125
Full-time International10,750
Part-time International (per 15 credits)1,344
Full-time International (per 15 credits)1,344

Supplementary fee information

For information about fees and funding for courses please see our fees and funding pages.

>> Entry


Joining instructions

For students starting this course in September 2014, view your joining instructions. For more information about joining the University, please see our New Students pages.

Typical offers

  • Tariff points: 280
  • GCSE: Grade C or above in English Language
  • A-level subjects: No specific subjects required. Points from A-Level General Studies and AS-Level subjects (not taken onto full A-Level) can be included towards overall tariff. You must have a minimum of two A-Levels.
  • EDEXCEL (BTEC) Diploma: A minimum of DMM from the BTEC Diploma
  • Access: Achievement of the HE Diploma; to include 15 L3 credits at merit; achievement of Level 2 credits giving GCSE equivalency (where appropriate) in English Language. Applicants completing Level 3 credits in Art and Design are guaranteed an interview.

Entry requirements

Individual offers may vary. Entry is based on portfolio and ability.

Successful applicants are generally those with the strongest portfolios. Students of all ages and from all social backgrounds are recruited with a variety of qualifications including Foundation Studies Diploma, BTEC National Diploma, A levels or equivalent qualification in Art and Design.

Applicants demonstrating commitment to and knowledge of the subject on their application form are invited to a selection session where they will be required to present a collection of their creative work to demonstrate a good practical ability in and understanding of their chosen field.

The emphasis should be on quality rather than quantity and applicants may wish to include samples from a range of disciplines such as model making, CGI, digital and traditional media. However, evidence of an interest in Film and Animation studies should be included, demonstrating work composed and framed for a screen or TV format such as evidence of storyboarding and sequencing of narrative. Also required are relevant sketchbooks, a variety of drawing approaches, design and samples of written work.

How to apply

Please see the general information about applications.

For further information

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