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Computer Animation (MA)

Computer Animation is prevalent right across moving image media. It is used in feature films, television dramas, natural history programmes on television, computer games, advertising commercials, corporate advertising and training, education and many other outlets.  

This master's programme is about learning and developing new skills, encouraging your creativity, and experimentation, among many other things.

Computer animation is usually fun to watch, fun to plan and fun to do. Whether you consider yourself to be artistic, more inclined towards the technical, or anywhere in-between, computer animation has a broad reach and has a career path for most who wish to join the computer animation industry.  

Funding now available:
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To apply for a place on our MA Computer Animation course, please click here or contact the course tutor.

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Tuition Fees 2020/21:
£6,300 (Home/EU)
£12,950 (Overseas)

Five reasons to study this course

  1. Swansea College of Art (SCA) UWTSD is recognised as a centre of excellence for art and design-based learning and research. The 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) categorised 95.8% of our research as being of world renown or recognised as internationally excellent.
  2. The master's Contemporary Dialogues portfolio offers a unique interdisciplinary learning environment, with access to workshops and staff across the faculty.
  3. Master's and research students are supported by a highly committed and professional team of lecturers and technical demonstrators, who together create a diverse, supportive learning environment.
  4. SCA offers full- and part-time options and, to help support our master's students, we deliver the majority of core teaching on Thursdays and Fridays.
  5. Whatuni ranked UWTSD 6th in the UK for postgraduate study in the Student Choice Awards 2018. The university has also been ranked 5th in the UK for postgraduate taught satisfaction in Creative Arts & Design, PTES 2018.

What you will learn

Course Overview

You will study a range of taught modules covering animation techniques, production methods, production management, and pre- and post-production.

Throughout these modules you will have the opportunity to develop your systemic knowledge and understanding of computer-generated styles and formats, some of which are at the forefront of contemporary knowledge.

You will also gain experience of contemporary industry-standard media production software and develop your critical awareness of computer-generated imagery. In addressing the topic of pre-production you will develop your ability to produce pre-production material that clearly communicates to specialist and non-specialist audiences, a skill that is valued by employers.

Throughout the programme you will improve your ability to initiate and carry out ambitious projects, (both personally and in teams). You will be expected to be decisive in complex and unpredictable contexts, to manage your own learning, employ scholarly reviews and original materials relevant to your discipline and show critical self-judgement. You will also develop your reflective critical thinking and analytical approaches to creative design with an awareness of social, ethical and cultural implications.


Computer Animation Elements (Part 1):

This module teaches the analysis of motion, its control, using a variety of methods, motion grammar and the technical, creative aspects of animation.  

Computer Animation Narrative (Part 1):

This module focuses on producing and controlling narrative through the choreography of simple characters and the camera.  Also included is face modelling, lip sync and rigging theory.

Pre-Production (Part 1): 

This part 1 module teaches the methods and work flows of creative production planning including story writing and organisation. The second half of this module involves the cohort working as a team to prepare for an actual production executed in the Major Project later in the programme.

Research Methods & Communications (Part 1):

This part 1 module is designed to promote methodical exploration of related topics which are usually visually or animation oriented and the methods used to write reports or proposals.

Four other modules complete the learning experience in part 1 of this programme:-

Production methods taught (Part 1):

This focuses on learning the work flows and methodology of using and integrating a range of computer software used in animation production.

Production methods researched (Part 1):

This module gives the student an opportunity to explore and practice specialist software of their choice.

Production Management (Part 1):

This explores team structure, communication between team members and the management of clients. Time management across a production team and its manipulation is also a vital aspect of this module.  

Post-production (Part 1):

This specialises in Compositing which has now become a major part of the animation production work flow but the preparation of sound is also covered here.

Major Project (Part 2):

This is a large group production which constitutes the final part 2 of the programme, where all the knowledge and skills learned in part 1, are put to use in a practical project.


The programme is assessed through coursework and oral presentations/examinations in accordance with the awarding body's regulations. The coursework is varied and the nature of assessment depends on the nature of the outcomes being assessed.  Students receive, as part of the student handbook, details of the assessment scheme used to assess work. Specific assessment criteria are contained in individual assignment briefs which are given to each student at the start of each assignment/project.

Our Facilities

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Key Information

Entry Criteria

We normally require an undergraduate 2.1. However, we also consider candidates with relevant experience and aim to interview all applicants. Where possible, we invite prospective students to experience a day of teaching to see if it suits their expectations.

Career Opportunities

The main career opportunities the MA in Computer Animation offers are working on, or in:

  • Computer games content
  • Computer games promotion
  • Corporate sector promotion
  • Corporate sector training
  • Education sector training
  • Feature film content
  • General digital media content
  • TV broadcast content
  • TV commercials content
Additional Costs

Our students have access to a diverse range of equipment and resources which, in most cases, is sufficient to complete their programme of study. We provide the basic materials necessary for students to develop their practical work within our extensive workshop and studio facilities.

However, it is likely that art and design students will incur some additional costs in the extension of their personal practice. Examples include purchasing their own specialised materials and equipment, joining optional study trips, and paying for printing. 

Depending on distance and duration, optional study visits can vary in cost from approximately £10 to visit local galleries and exhibitions, to £200 plus for overseas or longer UK study visits. These costs cover such things as transport and entry to venues and accommodation. There are normally reduced rates for our students.

Bursary / Scholarship Information

You may be eligible for funding to help support your study.  To find out about scholarships, bursaries and other funding opportunities that are available please visit our Scholarships and Bursaries section.

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In addition to our University Accommodation at Llys Glas, Swansea also benefits from a number of private student halls, all within a short walk, including:

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