Animation (with placement year)

BSc (Hons)
Entry 2017: BBC / 112 UCAS points
Duration: 4 years
Attendance mode: Full-time
Award: BSc (Hons)
UCAS code: W616
Placement: Placement year available
Suitable for international students
Faculty of Engineering & Informatics
Apply Prospectus downloads


Animation is a key part of the UK's £84 billion creative industry. Throughout this course you will develop the skills and understanding to make a successful career in this exciting and dynamic field.

In addition to using state-of-the-art processes and technologies to create digital animations, you will gain a solid grounding in classical animation techniques, drawing, cinematography, story telling and the conceptual understanding to ensure that you become a creative, competent and confident professional.

Our industry-experienced team will help you become an accomplished animator through a combination of practical and theoretical work. Our emphasis is on creating as many animations as possible while still placing it in a cultural and industrial context.

You will do more than simply learn how to use software, you will develop the crucial critical thinking skills that will enable you to produce work of the highest quality – something that the industry desperately wants.

Why Bradford?

Students studying on this course will develop practical, theoretical and scientific skills in visual effects, computer animation and still/moving image production. Working with industry professionals you will be able to develop high level expertise.

Upon graduation we aim for you to have produced an extensive portfolio of work ready to showcase to graduate employers. Practical elements of the course help to build up a substantial portfolio of work alone, however the various extra-curricular opportunities for you to be involved with are that which will make you excel and stand out for when it comes to stepping into the competitive graduate employment market.

Our unique partnership with the National Media Museum in Bradford gives you privileged access to the museum’s collections, exhibitions, industry events, film programmes and festivals. Bradford is also the first UNESCO World City of Film and our students engage in their cinematic events and initiatives and have the opportunity to produce content for City of Film. The Media Museum and City of Film make Bradford a truly exceptional place to study and engage with all aspects of film, animation and visual effects.

Our lecturers and professors have extensive production experience in the visual effects, film, photography, animation, and the games industries as well as internationally recognised research activities, we are able to bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to your education.

Entry requirements

Typical offer: BBC / 112 UCAS points

New UCAS tariff

We use the UCAS tariff system to help us compare different qualifications. For courses starting from September 2017 onwards, the way points are calculated is changing.

The number of points you get for each qualification and grade will be lower, for example, an A* grade at A level will be worth 56 points from 2017 onwards, instead of 140 in 2016. Despite the lower points, you will still need to achieve the same grades. The only exception to this is that AS Levels will now be worth 40% of an A Level, instead of 50%.

All qualifications that are currently on the UCAS Tariff will continue to attract points under the new system. More qualifications are also being brought into the UCAS tariff system for the first time, including Access to Higher Education courses.

Work out your UCAS tariff points using the UCAS Tariff Calculator (link opens in a new tab).

BTEC Extended Diploma:

DMM — there are no specific subject requirements.

Applicants on Access Programmes:

Meet UCAS tariff of 112. There are no specific subject requirements.

Plus minimum of:

GCSE English and Mathematics at grade C or 4 (equivalents accepted).

Additional entry requirements:

If you are an international student and you do not meet the entry requirements for direct entry onto this course you may be interested in our International Certificate of Foundation Studies.

English language requirements:

Minimum IELTS at 6.0 or the equivalent.

If you do not meet the IELTS requirement, you can take a University of Bradford pre-sessional English course. See the Language Centre for more details.



Module name Type
Year 1
3D Character Modelling and Animationcore
Conventions of Animationcore
Creative Industries - Foundationcore
Creativity and Imaginationcore
Introduction to 3D Computer Modelling and Animationcore
Observational Drawingcore
Year 2
3D Character Creationcore
Advanced Character Animationcore
Classical Animationcore
Script Programming and Technical Animationcore
CGI Lighting, Rendering and Look Developmentoption
Motion Captureoption
VFX Compositing and Post Productionoption
Year 4
Professional Industry Profilecore
Studio Project: Pre-Production and Productioncore

Reading lists

All reading lists can be found here.

Learning activities and assessment

Most modules use a mixture of formal lectures, practical lab sessions, tutorials and seminars. Some modules involve supervised group work, usually with an assigned academic staff member for each group.

All modules require students to undertake independent study, supported through distance learning technologies such as our Virtual Learning Environment. Reading lists and suggested resources for independent study provide further direction for students to undertake this work, and regular contact hours and informal feedback throughout the courses provide opportunities for further guidance for learners.

Assessments for modules mostly take the form of practical coursework, lab tests and written exams, with all forms being well represented throughout all years of the course across all modules.


This course offers you the opportunity to take up a placement year working in industry between your second and final year.

During the second year of your study we organise a number of activities to help students find placements. These include sessions on CVs, interviews etc. from the Careers service at the University and presentations by both employers and previous year's students on their placements.

Students who endeavour to, and take up the placement year will have support and guidance from a placements tutor throughout to monitor and support your progress.

After completing the year, students return to study the third academic year of their course, and we often find students return with a drive to continue their studies.

Many students continue their relationship with their placement employers working for them part-time, developing Final Year Projects with them or going back to them into graduate positions.

Career support and prospects

Career support

The University is committed to helping students develop and enhance employability and this is an integral part of many programmes. Specialist support is available throughout the course from Career and Employability Services including help to find part-time work while studying, placements, vacation work and graduate vacancies. Students are encouraged to access this support at an early stage and to use the extensive resources on the Careers website.

Discussing options with specialist advisers helps to clarify plans through exploring options and refining skills of job-hunting. In most of our programmes there is direct input by Career Development Advisers into the curriculum or through specially arranged workshops.

Employment statistics

89% of our 2015 graduates in games, animation and visual effects found employment or went on to further study within six months of graduating.

Career prospects

This course will prepare you for a successful career in computer animation. We are very proud of our graduates: they have gone on to work in the UK and overseas for organisations including the BBC, Warner Brothers, Vicon, MGM, Industrial Light and Magic, Disney, Universal, Weta Digital, Pixamundo, Dreamworks, Andy Serkis’ Imaginarium and many others.

Our graduates have worked on blockbuster movies including Avatar, Hugo, Gravity, Inception, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Warhorse, The Dark Knight trilogy and all of the Harry Potter films as well as numerous games. Over the last five years our post-graduate employment and study rates have been significantly better than the national average for animation courses in the UK.


Most of our staff are research active, and contribute to the cutting edge of their disciplines. Bradford has a strong pedigree of world leading research, and our aim is to ensure that students benefit from our staff’s insight into the future of their subject.

The integration of new and innovative research findings into our curriculum, known as Research Informed Teaching, is a core value and one of the key principles driving the design of our courses and our modules.


Our production facilities include a 16 camera Vicon optical motion capture system, animation labs with state of the art workstations and the latest industry standard software such as Maya, ZBrush, Houdini and Nuke, Chroma Key, drawing studio, HD video cameras, audio recording studio, and professional editing systems.

Equipment is free for students to use and small budgets are provided for project work. All course books, journals and online resources are provided in the library.

Fees, Finance and Scholarships

Tuition fees


  • Home/EU: £9,250*
  • Home/EU, sandwich placement year fee: 10% of the applicable full-time fee
  • International: £16,970
  • International, sandwich placement year fee: £1,700

* Home/EU fees will be subject to an annual increase, set in line with government policy. A percentage of any additional higher fee income will be used to support student opportunity through increased expenditure on access, student success and progression activities.

See our Fees and Financial Support website for more details.

Financial support

See our Fees and Financial Support website.

How do I find out more?

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This is the current course information. Modules and course details may change, subject to the University's programme approval, monitoring and review procedures. The University reserves the right to alter or withdraw courses, services and facilities as described on our website without notice and to amend Ordinances, Regulations, fees and charges at any time. Students should enquire as to the up-to-date position when applying for their course of study.