Animation & Visual Effects BA(Hons)

Animation & Visual Effects_Main
Penryn Campus
3 years full-time
Direct line
01326 254350

Launch your career in a rapidly growing sector. You'll learn and develop animation skills using industry-standard software, working creatively across a range of subjects, from traditional art practices to the complex work of visual effects.

Supported by experts from all forms of animation and visual effects, you'll experience a professional studio environment. Discover all forms of animation, trying your hand at 2D and 3D computer, stop motion and experimental work. You'll work in groups on projects that range from short assignments and live briefs through to films for festivals and competitions. All this is guided and nurtured by our expert staff and industry mentors.


  • Opportunity for industry mentoring
  • Live briefs with professional clients
  • Guest lectures from industry experts
  • Professional studio facilities and software
  • Animation festival trips

How the course is taught

We want to produce graduates who are highly skilled and creative professionals. We'll identify and nurture your strengths through seminars, workshops and tutorials. Group work features heavily, to reflect how the industry operates. Assignments will often involve live briefs working with real clients. 

How you'll spend your time 

YearTime spent in timetabled teaching and learning activityTime spent in guided independent studyTime spent on placements
224%76% 0%
315%85% 0%

How you'll be assessed 

Year   Assessment by written exams                                                        Assessment by practical exams                           Assessment by coursework     
10%0% 100%
20%13% 87%

Course outline

The course will introduce you to all forms of animation, enabling you to try 2D & 3D CG, traditional 2D, stop-motion and experimental animation. Projects range from short assignments to comprehensive live briefs, working with our industry partners and expert staff for guidance throughout.

During your 2nd year you’ll have the opportunity to specialise and refine your skills in Animation or Visual Effects. It’s a decision we prepare you for and support en-route, as you explore the field in greater depth. 

Your degree culminates in a final year major piece of animation, which you’ll both pitch and produce to an industry panel, a dissertation, showreel and portfolio. It’s a winning formula that equips you for the challenges of a hugely exciting industry.

What you'll do

Year one

Combining individual assignments and group projects, your 1st year is designed to provide you with the skills base and knowledge to creat your first animations. You’ll have the chance to try 2D & 3D CG, traditional 2D, stop-motion and experimental animation through a series of workshops, lectures and seminars. This practical work is supported by lectures in animation, drawing, design, storyboarding, and animation history and theory. Projects will be a mixture of short assignments and comprehensive live briefs, working with professionals from outside of the University. 

  • Animation practice
  • Design, storyboarding & motion studies
  • History & theory of animation
  • Study trip - optional study trip to an animation festival

Year two

Your 2nd year allows you to pick a pathway in either Animation or Visual Effects. During this year you’ll develop your individual Animation or VFX practice, galvanising your interests and skills. Part of your 2nd year entails becoming an essential member of the Production Team for one of the 3rd year projects as well as giving you greater insight into teamwork and collaboration. 

Your 2nd year also allows you the opportunity to study at one of Falmouth’s international partners through Study Abroad.

As a complete creative University you’ll have opportunities to collaborate with students from other courses such as Film, Television, Acting and Illustration, often of benefit to your project work.

  • Animation practice
  • Animation technologies
  • Electives - in either pre or post-production Animation & Visual Effects
  • Research & method
  • Study abroad

Year three

Your final year allows you to pitch and produce a major piece of animation. With support from tutors and visiting professionals you’ll develop an idea from initial concepts into a full animation production. Recent 3rd year students have enjoyed insight from companies such as Aardman Animation, Passion Pictures, TT Games, Spider Eye and Character Shop.

Your film productions will be additionally supported by an industry mentor. These mentors are based at some of the UK’s leading production companies and offer crucial developmental advice in your final year.

To support your practice you’ll also write a dissertation about a subject of your choice. Throughout the year you’ll benefit from close tutor support ensuring that you graduate with a strong showreel and portfolio, preparing you and helping you take the first steps in your professional career.

  • Final major project
  • Professional practice
  • Dissertation


Our technical facility mirrors industry standards. During term-time, our facilities and kit stores are open to our students from 9am to midnight (weekdays) and on Saturdays.

You'll have access to:

  • A large TV studio with three studio cameras and a 4 input Tricaster Ultra HD gallery facility with Chromatte grey screen, blue/green screen and full lighting rig
  • Three animation software studios containing powerful Dell Precision Workstations for 2D (TV Paint) and 3D (Maya, Nuke) work with Cintiq 27" QHD displays
  • Ten Mac Pro edit suites with Avid Media Composer, Adobe CC, Final Cut Pro and Da Vinci Resolve - network linked to Avid Nexis shared storage
  • 35-seat Production Hub for post production software training equipped with Apple iMacs and creative software including Avid Media Composer, Adobe Creative Cloud, Final Cut Pro, Da Vinci resolve and Pro Tools. Production management software including Movie Magic scheduling and budgeting is also included on these machines
  • Xsens motion capture
  • Specialist grading suite featuring DaVinci Resolve and 4K preview screen
  • Three post-production audio suites and dubbing theatre equipped with Pro Tools HD plus access to mics, foley traps and props
  • Digital cameras (HD to 4K) include RED, Sony, Canon, Blackmagic, Panasonic plus Odyssey 7Q+, alongside Arri and Bolex 16mm film cameras.
  • A wide range of hot and cold lighting equipment is available, including Blondes, Red Heads, Dedo, Kino Flo and LED lights
  • Grip and gimbal systems available include Glidecam 2000 Pro and V8, Free-Fly Movi M5, Wally Dolly, Indie Dolly, PD1 Dolly, Spider Dolly, Koolertron Sliders, Libec and Camcrane Jibs
  • Audio devices including 633 Sound Devices mixers, Edirol recorders, radio mikes and an extensive range of dynamic microphones
  • 129-seat cinema, with Christie M Series HD projection and 7.2 surround sound


You will be taught by experienced and enthusiastic tutors and supported by a team of specialist technicians. Our team offers industry insight covering short and feature films, TV series, commercials, title sequences and games. Our current staff are authors on the subject, international conference speakers and boast a wealth of international festival accolades , such as BAFTA awards.


  • Continuous assessment with no formal examinations
  • Assignments include practical work, presentations, reports and a dissertation


Previous graduates have taken on roles including:

  • 3D Animator: Aardman Animation & Double Negative
  • 2D Animator: DHX Media
  • Character Designer: Spider Eye & Hello Games
  • VFX co-ordinator: Ubisoft, Framestore & Cinesite
  • 3D Modeller: TT Fusion
  • Production Assistants: MPC Vancouver, Illion studios, Arthur Cox & Spider Eye

Student mentor scheme

Falmouth's student mentor scheme matches new starters with a second year student, to help you settle in and find your feet.

Our mentors can be reached on the BA(Hons) Animation & Visual Effects Facebook group.

They'll help with topics like living in Cornwall, what to expect at Falmouth, and the course itself.

Also worth a look are additional groups that offer assistance for disabled students, LGBTQ+ studentsmature students, international students, and Cornish locals

You'll need to join the groups before you can post. If you don't have access to Facebook, please email your name and proposed course to