Three Students utilising the CCIXR Smart Stage Studio.

Virtual Production BSc (Hons)

Develop your technical and creative skills in Virtual Production, using our futuristic labs and studios. Prepare for a career in one of the UK’s most rapidly growing creative industries.

University of Portsmouth Connected Degree - 3 year course with 4th year placement

Key information

UCAS code:

I710

Typical offer:

120-128 UCAS points from 3 A levels, or equivalent

See full entry requirements
Study mode and duration
Start date

Showing content for section Overview

Overview

Understand the emerging technology that’s changing the ways animation, film, games, and TV are created, and create digital content throughout your study. 

With this Virtual Production degree, you will develop your technical and creative skills via real-time skills, 3D modelling and coding using our cutting-edge labs and studios. This will include creating high-quality content for LED screens behind the actors, virtual mapping using VR and game technology, and capturing performance for characters and fantasy creatures using motion capture.

Throughout your study, you’ll be using our School of Creative Technologies' specialist equipment to create virtual experiences. You’ll also be supported by staff with academic, technical and professional expertise in the field, giving you a friendly environment to express your creativity freely as you develop your abilities.  

You’ll graduate with the skills to enter one of the UK’s most rapidly growing industries, or to follow your specialism into postgraduate study. Whatever path you choose, you’ll have the expertise to work with current virtual production practice and the understanding to take on all future opportunities.  
 

Course highlights

  • Study with experts in a burgeoning field, using industry-standard software and studio equipment
  • Explore potential career paths, such as real-time filmmaking, games and real-time animation
  • Investigate the potential in virtual production technology, and understand possible routes to  developments in the field
  • Work with supportive staff and students from related courses in the School, such as Computer Animation or Interactive Technologies
  • Take up a work placement between your second and third years of study, or a shorter placement while you learn

Contact information

Admissions

+44 (0) 23 9284 5566

Contact Admissions

Entry requirements

BSc (Hons) Virtual Production

Typical offers

  • A levels – ABB – BBB
  • UCAS points – 120–128 points to include a minimum of 3 A levels or equivalent (calculate your UCAS points)

English language requirements

  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.

We also accept other standard English tests and qualifications, as long as they meet the minimum requirements of your course.

If you don't 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.

Typical offers

  • A levels – ABB – BBB
  • UCAS points – 112–120 points to include a minimum of 2 A levels or equivalent (calculate your UCAS points)

You may need to have studied specific subjects or GCSEs - see full entry requirements and other qualifications we accept.

English language requirements

  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.

We also accept other standard English tests and qualifications, as long as they meet the minimum requirements of your course.

If you don't 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.

Facilities

Images capturing CCIXR facility

Virtual Production and Mixed Reality Studio

Take centre stage in the futuristic world of extended reality (XR) with our SmartStage-powered Virtual Production and Mixed Reality Studio.

Glenn Harris - CCIXR facility

Volumetric Video Studio

With our Holosys™-powered Volumetric Video Studio, you can capture stunning 3D footage of moving objects for your next XR project.

Images capturing CCIXR facility

Motion Capture Studio

Learn how to use the same professional motion capture equipment used in the VR, game design, and film industries.

Student wearing a VR headset as the CCIXR centre

Virtual Reality Lab

Our VR lab boasts the latest immersive and interactive technologies used by the ever-evolving VR industry.

Helen Yates - B roll Day 3

Wacom Studio

Design eye-catching illustrations, animations, and layouts in our 20-seat PC studio with industry-leading Wacom Cintiq widescreen graphics tablets.

17/05/2021.B-Roll - day 3 ..All Rights Reserved - Helen Yates- T: +44 (0)7790805960.Local copyright law applies to all print & online usage. Fees charged will comply with standard space rates and usage for that country, region or state.

Faculty Loan Store

Borrow any photo or video equipment you need for your next creative project via the Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries' Loan Store.

Careers and opportunities

After the course, you'll have plenty of career options.

The UK has made itself a powerhouse in virtual production, thanks to investment and the rise of innovative companies here. We're second only to the US in terms of the amount of work on feature films, and figures from the UK Government show we've spent the past two years embracing a fundamental change in process, production, roles, and workflows. 

Here in Portsmouth, we're tapped into the companies and career paths in that industry, and our course makes sure you're exposed to the methods and the technical kit used in the sector. You'll graduate with knowledge of the software and systems that are currently in use, and the transferable skills - such as research, reflective practice and collaborative project management - to take on the challenges of the new systems that will update and replace them. 

As a graduate, you'll be well placed to break into this growing industry, which is crying out for a skilled workforce. Your knowledge and experience could set you up for roles such as MoCap artist, pre-visualisation artist, virtual production technician, virtual production artist, real-time technician, or real-time artist. If you’ve taken a work placement as part of this course, you’ll have enhanced your career prospects with your contacts and industry experience. 

Alternatively, you could progress to a postgraduate degree in a subject related to your specialisations, such as computer animation, extended reality or games technology.
 

Ongoing careers support

Get experience while you study, with support to find part-time jobs, volunteering opportunities, and work experience.

Towards the end of your degree and for up to five years after graduation, you’ll receive one-to-one support from our Graduate Recruitment Consultancy to help you find your perfect role.

Placement year

Work placements are an excellent way to gain professional experience and further enhance your employment prospects after the course. Your placement can be taken between your second and final years of study, or after your third year. 

You can work for a practice, studio or company, or set up and run your own business with other students or on your own. Whichever you choose, you can get support from Creative Careers.

Creative Careers

Our in-faculty Creative Careers team has extensive recruitment experience and knows the creative sector well, making it easier for students to find placements within the creative industries.

They can guide you through every step of the application process, including:

  • Searching for the ideal job through their database of vacancies
  • Giving tips on how to write an interesting CV that will catch employers' attention, no matter the role
  • Organising mock interviews, so you can hone your technique and familiarise yourself with the recruitment environment
  • Writing your startup business proposal – if you're going down the self-employment route

The team will continue to give you support throughout your placement year.

Modules

Each module on this course is worth a certain number of credits.

In each year, you need to study modules worth a total of 120 credits. For example, 4 modules worth 20 credits and 1 module worth 40 credits.

What you'll study

Core modules

You’ll work with different programming languages and APIs to show your understanding of technical terms. You’ll also master the control of game behaviors and data variables.

By recognising patterns in syntax, you’ll be able to write or forecast code outcomes accurately, establishing essential skills for creating functional game systems and mechanics.

You'll learn about shooting with a single camera and everything that goes into making a film, from the inception of an idea to the final edit.

In workshops, you will get to try your hand at using a camera, setting up lights, recording sound, and editing videos on a computer. You will have the opportunity to take on important roles such as director, cinematographer, editor, or producer.

We will explore different filmmakers and types of movies and observe how culture and identity influence their work. This will help you incorporate similar techniques in your own films.

Additionally, you will work with a small team, improving your communication, teamwork, and project management skills.

You'll develop pipelines connecting CGI tools to build responsive, rendered environments. Through animation and asset creation tailored for real-time engines, you’ll gain indispensable skills for crafting immersive worlds.

Reflecting on your work, you’ll evaluate technical and artistic approaches, learning to fluidly translate between the languages of creativity and computation.

This module provides hands-on experience establishing robust foundations in real-time 3D tools and techniques for a future in interactive media and emerging technologies.

Practise using industry-standard techniques and learn to create models for different production types.

By studying outstanding examples in the field, you’ll understand what’s expected in professional workflows, helping you to confidently meet creative briefs.

You’ll finish this module with enhanced technical skills and knowledge of the latest tools. Get ready to take your models from the initial concept right through to their integration into the final scene.

Investigating emerging technologies, you'll evaluate industries navigating social and cultural change, considering ethical impacts.

Developing personal strategies, you'll sharpen skills interpreting and extending briefs across animation, film, games and VFX.

This module enables you to master complex conceptual thinking and communication for virtual settings, equipping you with adaptable knowledge to engage thoughtfully and critically.

You'll build a portfolio showcasing innovative techniques tailored to emerging workflows.

Through hands-on training, you'll develop proficiency with core principles and tools to meet diverse challenges. You'll adopt professional best practices for virtual settings. This module will prepare you for future roles, by honing technical skills and creative problem-solving.

Core modules

You'll learn the grammar and vocabulary to convey your vision, gaining advanced camera skills and aesthetic judgment. Implementing safety protocols, you'll operate equipment with care and compliance.

This module provides focused training in real-world techniques tailored for virtual settings. You'll gain proficiency to tell compelling stories through virtual cinematography.

You'll expand your technical knowledge while researching industry principles and best practices. Through critical evaluation of existing approaches, you'll gain strategic insights to inform your own designs. Practical projects will exercise your skills in prototyping, testing and documenting VR experiences. By the end, you'll be ready to ideate and deliver highly engaging VR applications grounded in user experience theory.

Optional modules

You’ll research, design, and develop a character and environment following an industry-standard brief. Create model sheets and mood boards to guide your 3D workflow and visualise your concepts as you take your asset from concept to finish. Finally, you will use professional real-time techniques to create a demo reel that shows your technical excellence.

This module will equip you with practical experience and key skills in creating triple-A game assets, VR/AR content, and other real-time 3D applications.

You’ll get to spend a semester at one of our global partner universities, giving you a unique international spin on your learning. This experience is perfect for building professional skills and a global outlook, preparing you for work anywhere in the world. You’ll also get the chance to study and work on your own in a new setting, which will boost your personal growth and relate to your degree.

When you come back, you’ll be full of fresh ideas to energise your work.

This module gives you the chance to explore different approaches and build international networks in creative technologies.

Join a team of creative students and do a project together. Try new things and see how they can help you.

You’ll also grasp how to use your skills with others. Sometimes you’ll be a leader, sometimes a helper. Talk about your ideas and learn from them. You’ll make something to show what you learned and share it with others.

This module helps you gain new skills and understand other fields. You’ll be a smart and creative person, ready to solve real-world problems.

You’ll choose learning tasks that add up to 60 hours, like internships, volunteering, research, or remote study that match your career plans. Workshops will help you make meaningful goals and think about what you’ve accomplished. Through this, you’ll grow the knowledge, skills, and qualities you need to thrive in the workplace.

By looking at your growth through active participation and reading, you’ll become a perceptive, eager job-seeker who stands out.

You’ll use virtual production tools to quickly create assets that meet professional benchmarks, ranging from creatures to environments. This joint effort will involve elements of staging, cinematography, and VFX compositing, pushing you to intuitively combine these aspects within strict deadlines.

This module also introduces you to technologies that improve efficiency. From this, you’ll gain a deeper industry understanding and enhance the quality of your project work.

As a team, you will embark on a journey of entrepreneurship, starting with ideation and ending with the launch of your product or service. You will analyse complex factors influencing a successful launch, conduct thorough research to assess feasibility and gain valuable insights into marketing, manufacturing, and sales strategies.

Working together on pitch presentations, you will discover your strengths as an entrepreneur or team member. This module provides transferable skills essential to thrive in creative industries, whether you plan to launch your own company or seek employment with top organisations. You will develop the mindset and abilities to spot opportunities and act on them, which will benefit your career.

Core modules

Demonstrating project management and problem-solving skills, through critical analysis and experimentation, you'll produce a body of work that advances knowledge in your discipline.

Communicating scholarly outcomes with impact, you'll demonstrate your knowledge and abilities, drawing together your learning into a compelling self-directed showcase.

This is the culmination of your degree journey - proving your readiness for professional and academic challenges ahead.

As part of your games industry training, you will work on a project that aligns with your career aspirations. This could involve creating 3D characters and worlds, designing original artwork or animating game levels. You will have the freedom to unleash your creativity and showcase your skills by incorporating real-world elements into your game designs.

In addition, you will learn to make informed design decisions through independent study and proactive feedback, rather than relying solely on classroom instruction. By analysing professional works, you will be able to evaluate your own creations and ensure they meet industry standards.

By the end of this module, you will have built a portfolio that demonstrates your readiness to embark on a career in game development, with projects that reflect your ambitions.

You'll design and plan pre-production and explore cutting-edge techniques tailored to your vision.

You'll develop industry-standard and emerging practices to meet production goals. Working inclusively as a team, you'll unite diverse perspectives toward a shared purpose.

In this fascinating module, you’ll delve into this enthralling next-gen realm. Explore the latest techniques for digitally capturing human motion and seamlessly applying it to 3D character animation.

Join us in our futuristic mocap studio and master the entire process — from capturing data to animating it using industry software. Experts will guide you as you critically assess different technologies and develop skills to preserve the authenticity and nuance of performances.

By the end, you’ll have firsthand experience with this powerful storytelling tool, widely used to create captivating virtual characters in films, games, and beyond. Your creativity will soar as you explore the boundless possibilities of bringing digital worlds to life.

Building on foundations, you'll evolve concepts for immersive virtual environments.

You'll implement cutting-edge techniques to bring your vision to life, and evaluate optimal production approaches. This is your opportunity to accomplish something extraordinary by pushing boundaries in virtual storytelling.

When the final frame renders, take pride in achieving a dynamic group project through passion and perseverance.

During this module, you'll spend 6 months working on your own business venture, then 3 months gaining industry experience. This opportunity allows you to apply what you've learned in a practical setting while exploring different career options. You'll also have the chance to develop professional relationships and expand your network.

Assess your personal strengths and weaknesses to set goals for the future. Throughout the module, you'll demonstrate increasing independence while still valuing the support of others. Gain a broader understanding of the world through real-world experiences and insights. Additionally, you'll earn valuable credits for your CV and enhance your skill set.

By the end of this module, you'll graduate with the practical experience that employers are seeking.

This experience lets you learn firsthand how to set up and run a small business. You’ll absorb professional practices and business situations that matter to your entrepreneurial goals. Make important connections while working independently within set rules. Think deeply about your strengths, weaknesses, criteria for success, and future plans.

This opportunity is useful for your career. It lets you use what you’ve learnt in your degree in the real world and helps you understand your capabilities.

After finishing this placement and the related assessments, you’ll get more credits for your sandwich degree. This practical experience is a valuable step in developing an entrepreneurial way of thinking.

You’ll spend 24–48 weeks at a chosen company, learning from professionals and helping out with actual projects. Gain confidence, knowledge, and skills by taking on more responsibility with gradually less help. As you progress, you’ll make professional connections and think about how you’re doing. Take in what you learn about how industries and businesses work.

This placement is an ideal chance to grow in your career. By using what you’ve learnt in a workplace, you’ll understand more about your own strengths, what you need to work on, and your plans after you graduate.

After this placement and the related assessments, you’ll get extra credits for your sandwich degree. This practical experience is a valuable part of your education.

Showcase specialised abilities by completing relevant assignments abroad. Then examine your global experience critically: how has immersion in foreign creative culture expanded your perspective? Identify new cross-cultural transferable skills to empower your continued educational and professional journey.

Evaluating international contexts, you'll critically connect on-site activities to your disciplinary knowledge, gaining global insights. Working independently overseas, you'll complete relevant assignments, honing skills transferable to future studies and careers.

Upon you'll reflect on new worldviews and cross-cultural competencies. This invaluable module provides an opportunity to broaden your creative and technical knowledge while developing adaptability as a global citizen.

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.

Teaching

Teaching methods on this course include:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • workshops
  • studio tutorials
  • individual and group projects

You can access all teaching resources on Moodle, our virtual learning environment, from anywhere with a Web connection.

For more about the teaching activities for specific modules, see the module list above.

Teaching staff profiles

Here are some of the expert staff that will teach you on this course.

Nicola Ann Wakefield Portrait
Ms Niki Wakefield

Senior Lecturer

niki.wakefield@port.ac.uk

School of Creative Technologies

Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries

Read more

How you're assessed

  • digital reviews of design projects
  • design portfolios
  • reflective journals and sketchbooks
  • technical journals and models
  • essays
  • dissertation

You’ll be able to test your skills and knowledge informally before you do assessments that count towards your final mark.

You can get feedback on all practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future.

How you'll spend your time

One of the main differences between school or college and university is how much control you have over your learning.

We use a blended learning approach to teaching, which means you’ll take part in both face-to-face and online activities during your studies.  As well as attending your timetabled classes you'll study independently in your free time, supported by staff and our virtual learning environment, Moodle.

A typical week

We recommend you spend at least 30 hours a week studying for your degree.

In your first year, you’ll be in timetabled teaching activities for about 10 hours a week. These activities include:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • group work

The rest of the time you’ll do independent study, either tutor-directed or alone, such as:

  • practice
  • reading
  • research
  • revision
  • coursework

You may also participate in external events, like GameJam, to develop your portfolio and challenge your skills.

You'll probably do more independent study and have less scheduled teaching in years 2 and 3, but this depends on which modules you choose.

Most timetabled teaching takes place during the day, from Monday to Friday. You may occasionally need to go to University and course events in the evenings. There’s usually no teaching on Wednesday afternoons.

Term dates

The academic year runs from September to June. There are breaks at Christmas and Easter.

See term dates

Supporting your learning

The amount of timetabled teaching you'll get on your degree might be less than what you're used to at school or college, but you'll also get 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 independent 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.

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

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.

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

If you have a disability or need extra support, the Additional Support and Disability Centre (ASDAC) will give you help, support and advice.

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

Tuition fees (2024 start)

  • UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £9,250 a year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • EU students – £9,250 a year, including our Transition Scholarship (may be subject to annual increase)
  • International students – £17,900 a year (subject to annual increase)

You won't pay any extra tuition fees to another university for taking part in a study/work abroad activity if you choose to do it for the whole academic year. During a year abroad you'll only have to pay a reduced fee to the University of Portsmouth.

Tuition fees (2025 start)

  • UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £9,250 a year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • EU students – £9,250 a year, including our Transition Scholarship (may be subject to annual increase)
  • International students – £17,900 a year (subject to annual increase)

You won't pay any extra tuition fees to another university for taking part in a study/work abroad activity if you choose to do it for the whole academic year. During a year abroad you'll only have to pay a reduced fee to the University of Portsmouth.

Funding your studies

Find out how to fund your studies, including the scholarships and bursaries you could get. You can also find more about tuition fees and living costs, including what your tuition fees cover.

Applying from outside the UK? Find out about funding options for international students.

Additional course costs

These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending.

Costs breakdown

Our accommodation section shows your accommodation options and highlights how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.

You’ll study up to 6 modules a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each module.

You can borrow most of these from the Library. If you buy these, they may cost up to £60 each.

We recommend that you budget £75 a year for photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.

If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.

We will supply you with a printing allowance but you will incur additional printing costs on portfolio work of between £50–£200.

You may incur material costs on a project which will vary from £20–£100.

Optional study trips abroad will cost in the region of £300–£700.

If you take a placement year or study abroad year, tuition fees for that year are as follows:

  • UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £1,385 a year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • EU students – £1,385 a year, including Transition Scholarship (may be subject to annual increase)
  • International students – £2,875  a year (subject to annual increase)

Apply

How to apply

To start this course in 2024, please contact us.

You can also sign up to an Open Day to:

  • Tour our campus, facilities and halls of residence
  • Speak with lecturers and chat with our students 
  • Get information about where to live, how to fund your studies and which clubs and societies to join

If you're new to the application process, read our guide on applying for an undergraduate course.

To start this course in 2025, apply through UCAS. You'll need:

  • the UCAS course code – I710
  • our institution code – P80

 Apply now through UCAS

 

If you'd prefer to apply directly, use our online application form.

You can also sign up to an Open Day to:

  • Tour our campus, facilities and halls of residence
  • Speak with lecturers and chat with our students 
  • Get information about where to live, how to fund your studies and which clubs and societies to join

If you're new to the application process, read our guide on applying for an undergraduate course.

Applying from outside the UK

As an international student you'll apply using the same process as UK students, but you’ll need to consider a few extra things. 

You can get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region.

Find out what additional information you need in 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.

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.