Computer animation student uses stylus on screen

Mode of Study

Full-time, Part-time

Duration

1 year full-time, 2 years part-time

Start date

September 2023

Overview

This MSc Computer Animation degree will prepare you to work in animation roles across the creative and media industries. Whether you want to work in computer games, television, film or advertising, this Master’s will help you to build on your existing animation experience, specialise in specific areas of animation and prepare for the career you want. 

During the course you’ll have opportunities to attend industry talks, network with professionals and develop your showreel. You’ll graduate ready to enter the industry, and be able to showcase your skills, knowledge and experience to potential employers. 

Taught by lecturers with experience in many areas of animation, including specialists in 3D modelling/sculpting, texturing, rigging, 3D animation, FX and compositing, this Master's will enhance your technical animation skills and subject knowledge as you use industry equipment and software to build on your previous experience. 

You'll apply your learning in an individual CGI/Animation/VFX project, which you’ll tailor to your skills, interests and career goals with support from your supervisor. 

This qualification is an option on the MSc Creative Technologies course. You'll apply for the MSc Creative Technologies course, then choose Computer Animation as your pathway project after you start the course. You'll graduate with MSc Computer Animation.

Course highlights

  • Specialise in a specific area of computer animation and expand your existing animation skills and knowledge
  • Access University facilities including high-end computers and Cintiqs (drawing tablets)
  • Use professional level software including Maya, Houdini, Nuke, Substance Painter, and Substance Designer
  • Join creative technologies clubs and workshops including ZBrush sculpt club, character animation workshop, film/animation nights
  • Attend networking and careers events to meet and build relationships with potential employers
  • Benefit from our relationship with with local VFX company Dark Cosmos Creative
  • Attend industry talks 

Standard applications

Start this course in September 2022

Apply now (Full-time)

Apply now (Part-time)

Careers and opportunities

Careers this Master's prepares you for

This MSc Computer Animation degree is your opportunity to specialise in a particular area of animation and develop your existing industry skills. You'll build on the broad knowledge you gained at undergraduate level. 

During the course you’ll enhance your showreel as you prepare for work in industry.  

Graduates of this course have gone onto roles such as:

  • 3D generalist 
  • animators
  • concept artists
  • storyboard artists
  • compositors
  • creative directors
  • art directors
  • modellers
  • riggers
  • texture artists
  • fx artists
  • motion capture technicians
  • freelance artists

Graduates of this course have gone on to work in roles such as: 

  • facial motion capture at Industrial Light and Magic

What you'll study

Full-time

All modules on this MSc Computer Animation are core.

Additional content
The learning outcomes of this module are:
  • Critically evaluate their professional and academic and personal development skills and reflect on ways in which weaknesses might be improved and strengths enhanced.
  • Develop skills to professionally and confidently present to an informed audience.
  • Evaluate their skills and interests and how they relate to possible career plans (including entrepreneurship and/or business start-up.) and reflexively define the process for achievement of academic, professional and career aspirations.
  • Reflexively demonstrate the synthesis of personal experience, written information and critical thinking in order to define a coherent, contextualised and argued position in an accepted written format.

Explore this module

Additional content
The learning outcomes of this module are:
  • Systematically synthesise exploratory research into a clearly focused project definition.
  • Creatively explore and conceptualise a coherent body of supporting material on the basis of a clearly defined project programme area.
  • Critically evaluate appropriate sources and provide evidence of the theoretical, critical and historical contexts and knowledge frameworks, which inform the project programme.
  • Evaluate how selected methodologies will facilitate the exploration of the project programme and derive suitable research questions or development requirements.
  • Systematically articulate the project programme, its sources, its contextual framework, its methodologies and the basis upon which it may be innovative.
  • Systematically examine the relevant social, professional and legal factors related to project programme.

Explore this module

Additional content
The learning outcomes of this module are:
  • Synthesise a diverse range of information and requirements to systematically conceptualise the solution to a significant practical, creative or research problem.
  • Evaluate and systematically implement appropriate methodologies to design an innovative resolution to a clearly defined project.
  • Analyse the theoretical inter-relationship of concept and method, and reflect on the practical instantiation in the achievement of an innovative resolution.
  • Critically evaluate the project programme and its progression to take account of the relationship between research and professional practice.

Explore this module

Additional content

Module information to be confirmed.

Explore this module

Part-time

All modules on this MSc Computer Animation are core.

Additional content
The learning outcomes of this module are:
  • Critically evaluate their professional and academic and personal development skills and reflect on ways in which weaknesses might be improved and strengths enhanced.
  • Develop skills to professionally and confidently present to an informed audience.
  • Evaluate their skills and interests and how they relate to possible career plans (including entrepreneurship and/or business start-up.) and reflexively define the process for achievement of academic, professional and career aspirations.
  • Reflexively demonstrate the synthesis of personal experience, written information and critical thinking in order to define a coherent, contextualised and argued position in an accepted written format.

Explore this module

Additional content
The learning outcomes of this module are:
  • Systematically synthesise exploratory research into a clearly focused project definition.
  • Creatively explore and conceptualise a coherent body of supporting material on the basis of a clearly defined project programme area.
  • Critically evaluate appropriate sources and provide evidence of the theoretical, critical and historical contexts and knowledge frameworks, which inform the project programme.
  • Evaluate how selected methodologies will facilitate the exploration of the project programme and derive suitable research questions or development requirements.
  • Systematically articulate the project programme, its sources, its contextual framework, its methodologies and the basis upon which it may be innovative.
  • Systematically examine the relevant social, professional and legal factors related to project programme.

Explore this module

Additional content
The learning outcomes of this module are:
  • Synthesise a diverse range of information and requirements to systematically conceptualise the solution to a significant practical, creative or research problem.
  • Evaluate and systematically implement appropriate methodologies to design an innovative resolution to a clearly defined project.
  • Analyse the theoretical inter-relationship of concept and method, and reflect on the practical instantiation in the achievement of an innovative resolution.
  • Critically evaluate the project programme and its progression to take account of the relationship between research and professional practice.

Explore this module

Additional content

Module information to be confirmed.

Explore this module


Changes to course content

We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.

Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry. If a module doesn't run, we'll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.

Careers and opportunities

Careers this Master's prepares you for

This MSc Computer Animation degree is your opportunity to specialise in a particular area of animation and develop your existing industry skills. You'll build on the broad knowledge you gained at undergraduate level. 

During the course you’ll enhance your showreel as you prepare for work in industry.  

Graduates of this course have gone onto roles such as:

  • 3D generalist 
  • animators
  • concept artists
  • storyboard artists
  • compositors
  • creative directors
  • art directors
  • modellers
  • riggers
  • texture artists
  • fx artists
  • motion capture technicians
  • freelance artists

Graduates of this course have gone on to work in roles such as: 

  • facial motion capture at Industrial Light and Magic

9 reasons to do a Master's

Career planning

During your course, you'll have expert career support from your tutors and from our Careers and Employability Centre, which you can access for 5 years after you graduate.

You'll benefit from:

  • Networking events
  • 1-to-1 appointments
  • CV and cover letter advice
  • Interview preparation and practice
  • Workshops to enhance your employability skills
  • Recruitment events including the Student and Graduate Opportunities Fair
  • Support starting your own business
Learn more about your career support

How you'll spend your time

We recognise that you'll probably be juggling more demands when you do your Master's degree, as you may be working or you may have family responsibilities.

We'll give you as much indication here as we can of how much time you'll need to be on campus and how many hours you can expect to spend in self-directed study, but please note that these indications are always subject to change. You should receive your full timetable several weeks before you start with us.

It is our expectation that all international students will join us here on campus in Portsmouth.

Course structure

This Master's degree runs over 12 months. You can expect:

  • to attend campus for 1 day per week
  • opportunities to attend additional undergraduate lectures
  • to access learning resources online in your own time

Teaching

Teaching on this course includes:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • workshops
  • tutorials

You'll be introduced to key topics and expected to do independent study to develop your skills and projects to a proficient level, supported by scheduled activities.

Our teaching staff includes industry professionals who've worked on commercial productions such as Guardians of the Galaxy, Exodus: Gods and Kings, Jupiter Ascending, Prince Caspian, Hellboy, Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter.

Assessment

You'll be assessed through: 

  • practical artefacts
  • written reports
  • creative projects

You'll be able to test your ideas and techniques informally before doing assessments that count towards your final mark.

Feedback is available on all practice and formal assessments so that you can improve in the future. You'll receive detailed written feedback on summative assignments, while formative feedback may be written or verbal.

You'll be paired with a project supervisor who provides ongoing feedback.

Teaching staff

These are some of the expert staff who'll teach you on this course:

Nicola Ann Wakefield Portrait

Ms Niki Wakefield

Senior Lecturer

niki.wakefield@port.ac.uk

Read more
Paul Robert Charisse Portrait

Mr Paul Charisse

Senior Lecturer

Paul.Charisse@port.ac.uk

School of Creative Technologies

Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries

PhD Supervisor

Read more

Term dates

September start

The Master's academic year runs from September to the following September. There are breaks at Christmas and Easter. Over the summer you'll be writing your project/dissertation.

See key dates

Graduation Class of 2021

Joining us as an international student

You'll feel at home in our international community and our diverse city. You'll be joining over 5,000 international students from more than 150 countries who are studying with us.

Learn more about international student life and how we can help you with visas, applications, arrival and settling in. 

Information for international students

Facilities and specialist software

facilities 3d software edit

3D software and game engines

Deliver slick, professional projects using industry-wide 3D rendering programs like Maya and 3DS Max, and power them with engines such as Unity and Unreal.

facilities

CCIXR

Create stunning works for film, TV, music, gaming and immersive reality in the UK's first integrated facility of its kind.

Explore CCIXR

Student using film camera viewfinder

Eldon TV studios and CCI TV

Learn the skills you need to work in video/audio production and broadcasting and get involved in our student-led TV channel, CCI TV.

Explore the studios

You'll also use facilities including our:

  • Volumetric Capture studio
  • photogrammetry studio
  • White Swan TV studio
  • Wacom studios
  • Lightbox suites
  • Motion capture studio 
  • VR lab
  • Video editing suite

Supporting your learning

Master's study is more focused on independent learning than undergraduate study, but you'll get lots of support via video, phone and face-to-face from teaching and support staff to enhance your learning experience and help you succeed. You can build your personalised network of support from the following people and services:

Types of support

Your personal tutor helps you make the transition to postgraduate study and gives you academic and personal support throughout your time at university.

You'll have regular contact with your personal tutor in learning activities or scheduled meetings. You can also make an appointment with them if you need extra support.

In addition to the support you get from your personal tutor, you'll also have access to a Faculty student support advisor. They can give you confidential, impartial advice on anything to do with your studies and personal wellbeing and refer you to specialist support services.

If you need support with software and equipment or you want to learn additional skills (including skills not covered on your course), our creative skills tutors provide free workshops, activities and one-on-one tutorials. Skills you can learn include life drawing, film camera operation and video production.

You'll have help from a team of faculty academic skills tutors. They can help you improve and develop your academic skills and support you in any area of your study.

They can help with:

  • Improving your academic writing (for example, essays, reports, dissertations)
  • Delivering presentations (including observing and filming presentations)
  • Understanding and using assignment feedback
  • Managing your time and workload
  • Revision and exam techniques

Computing support staff are always available to give technical support in the Faculty's computer suites during normal working hours. There's also some support available from 5.00pm to midnight at busy times of the year.

 

As well as support from faculty staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University's Academic Skills Unit (ASK).

ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:

  • Academic writing
  • Note taking
  • Time management
  • Critical thinking
  • Presentation skills
  • Referencing
  • Working in groups
  • Revision, memory and exam techniques

Our online Learning Well mini-course will help you plan for managing the challenges of learning and student life, so you can fulfil your potential and have a great student experience.

You can get personal, emotional and mental health support from our Student Wellbeing Service, in person and online. This includes 1-2-1 support as well as courses and workshops that help you better manage stress, anxiety or depression.

If you require extra support because of a disability or additional learning need our specialist team can help you.

They'll help you to

  • discuss and agree on reasonable adjustments
  • liaise with other University services and facilities, such as the library
  • access specialist study skills and strategies tutors, and assistive technology tutors, on a 1-to-1 basis or in groups
  • liaise with external services

Library staff are available in person or by email, phone or online chat to help you make the most of the University's library resources. You can also request one-to-one appointments and get support from a librarian who specialises in your subject area.

The library is open 24 hours a day, every day, in term time.

If English isn't your first language, you can do one of our English language courses to improve your written and spoken English language skills before starting your degree. Once you're here, you can take part in our free In-Sessional English (ISE) programme to improve your English further.

Course costs and funding

Tuition fees (September 2022 start)

  • Full time: £8,100
  • Part time: £5,400 in year 1 and £2,700 in year 2

(including Transition Scholarship)

  • Full-time: £8,100
  • Part-time: £5,400 in year 1 and £2,700 in year 2
  • Full time: £17,000
  • Part time: £11,330 in year 1 and £5,670 in year 2

University of Portsmouth graduates may receive a 20% alumni tuition fee discount

Fees are subject to annual increase. Read our tuition fees terms and conditions.

You'll be able to pay your fees in instalments. Find out how to pay your tuition fees.

Funding your studies

Explore how to fund your studies, including available scholarships and bursaries.

If you're a UK student, you may be eligible for a Government Postgraduate Master's Loan, which you can use to help with course fees and living costs.

If you're a UK student who achieved a first in your undergraduate degree you may be eligible for a £3,000 University of Portsmouth scholarship.

Loans, scholarships and bursaries

Browse funding such as the Government Postgraduate Loan, our scholarships for new and returning students, and subject specific loans.

Explore funding

Fees and funding for postgraduate taught courses

Discover how you can fund your postgraduate studies at Portsmouth – including loans, scholarships and bursaries – and read our guidance on topics like how to budget, and how to get support if you're disabled or have dependents.

Explore funding

You'll be applying for MSc Creative Technologies but you'll graduate with a MSc Computer Animation Master's degree when you complete the course.

Our courses fill up quickly, so submit your application as soon as you decide which course you want to study.

Entry requirements​

This qualification is an option on the Creative Technologies Master's course. You'll apply for the MSc Creative Technologies course, then choose Computer Animation as your pathway project after you start the course. You'll graduate with MSc Computer Animation.

These are the entry requirements for the MSc Creative Technologies course.

Extra information for international students

  • A good honours degree or equivalent in a relevant subject.

Please get in touch if you're not sure if your undergraduate subject is relevant to this degree.

Equivalent professional experience and/or qualifications will also be considered, such as previous study, employment, voluntary work and training courses, including courses and qualifications you didn't complete. Learn more about our Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).

If you're applying as an international student with a non-UK degree, you’ll need to show you meet the UK entry requirements listed above.

To find out if your non-UK degree or other qualification is accepted, please visit our page for your country and view the UK equivalent of your qualification. 

  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 (or equivalent) with no component score below 6.0.

You do not need an IELTS or equivalent certification if:

  • you have a UK degree
  • you have a degree from a majority English speaking country (not taught by Distance Learning)
  • you are a national of a majority English speaking country

Degrees taught solely in English from non-majority English speaking countries will be considered on a case by case basis. Find out more about our English language requirements.

If you do not meet the English language requirements yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

An online portfolio submission will be required as part of the selection process.

For more information on how to put together a portfolio, read our MSc Creative Technologies portfolio guide.

How to apply

Unlike undergraduate applications, which go through UCAS, applications for this Master's course are made directly to us.

There's no deadline for applications to this course. We accept applications right up until the start date in September, as long as there are places available. If you wait until September to apply, you may find that the course is full.

If you're applying as an international student, remember that you'll need to leave plenty of time to get your visa organised.

You can find more advice about applying in our Master's application checklist. International students and current students and recent graduates of the University of Portsmouth also have some different application options, which are detailed below.

Extra information for international students

If you're an international student, you can apply directly to us using the same application form as UK students.

You could also get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region. To find out what to include in your application, head to the how to apply page of our international students section.

If you don’t meet the English language requirements for this course yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

Ready to apply?

You'll be applying for MSc Creative Technologies but you'll graduate with a MSc Computer Animation Master's degree when you complete the course.

Our courses fill up quickly, so submit your application as soon as you decide which course you want to study.

Standard applications

Start this course in September 2023

Apply now (Full-time)

Apply now (Part-time)

I'm a current Portsmouth student, or a recent Portsmouth graduate

If you're currently in your final year of study at Portsmouth, or you graduated since July 2021, you're eligible to make a fast track application. You'll have:

  • a shorter application form to complete
  • access to the 20% Alumni fee discount
  • a guaranteed conditional offer, for most Master's courses 

Learn more about fast track

After you apply

Once we receive your application, we may ask you for further information. We will then either make you an offer or suggest alternatives if your application is unsuccessful.

You'll usually get a decision within 10 working days, so you shouldn't have to wait too long. Some courses have an interview stage – we'll let you know if you need to prepare for one.

Learn more about how we assess your application.

Admissions terms and conditions

When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to abide by our Student Contract (which includes the University's relevant policies, rules and regulations). You should read and consider these before you apply.