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CGI and Visual Effects

BSc (Hons)

Outstanding facilities

Including a large motion capture suite, HDTV Centre and Compositing

90% employability

Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education 2017

Innovative software

Expert software from Foundry, Pixel Logic and Adobe

UCAS code:
W614
Location:
Stoke-on-Trent campus
Mode of study:
Full-time
Duration:
3 years
Academic year:
17 September 2018 - 21 June 2019
09 September 2019 - 19 June 2020
Book onto an Open Day Enquire about this course Apply now

Want to gain the technical skills to create awe-inspiring special effects for film, television, games and advertising? Take our CGI and Visual Effects degree.

The UK visual effects industry is amongst the most highly rated in the world – and this is your chance to become a part of it. Our Computer-Generated Imagery (CGI) and Visual Effects degree is optimised for students wishing to learn the creative and technical skills required to produce awe-inspiring special effects for film, television, games and advertising.

Combining visual effects, 3D modelling, animation and digital technology, this course teaches you to produce the sort of mind-blowing results that you see in Hollywood blockbusters. Whether you’re keen to create explosions and chaos, or master the technology required to bring a motion capture character to life, we can prepare you for an exciting career in the visual effects industry.

Covering areas like 3D modelling, digital animation and matchmoving, your first year will see you get to grips with the foundations of CGI and Visual Effects. You’ll learn how to use software such as Maya, Adobe Photoshop and After Effects. You’ll take part in a team project, producing a short film to showcase your newly-acquired skills.

You'll create effects using professional industry technology, including HD and 4K digital cinema cameras, green screen studios, Unreal games engine and post-production suites. Using innovative software from Foundry, Pixel Logic and Adobe is also a fundamental part of this course.

Course content

In Year 1 you’ll learn and experiment with the fundamental skills required to succeed in visual effects. In a team, you will plan and shoot a short film. This is a chance to use the skills you've learned in 3D modelling, digital compositing, lighting and rendering, digital animation, pre-visualisation and matchmoving.

In Year 2 you’ll take your computer graphic skills to a higher level. You’ll learn advanced 3D nuke compositing, advanced image manipulation, tracking and shot clean up, as well as photorealistic CG lighting and rendering. In more advanced 3D modelling work you'll create characters and computer-generated environments. You’ll also take part in team-based assignments, with each person taking on a job as you would in industry.

In your final year, you’ll study programming concepts for visual effects. Here you can automate processes to speed up your workflow, making you more employable. You’ll also study dynamics and simulations for effects such as fire, water and destruction. You’ll work on another team based VFX project allowing you to further focus on the areas that interest you. Finally, you’ll complete your individual research-based project and portfolio piece. This will showcase your talents and become the cornerstone of your showreel.

Academic year

The course operates on a modular basis that provides flexibility and choice. Typically the majority of modules are 30 academic credits with a smaller number of 15 credit modules. Each credit taken equates to a total study time of around 10 hours. Total study time includes scheduled teaching, independent study and assessment activity. Full-time students take modules worth 60 credits per semester, with part-time students taking proportionately fewer credits per semester. All students take a total of 120 credits per level and 360 credits for the degree as a whole. Your overall grade for the course and your degree classification are based on the marks obtained for modules taken at levels 5 and 6. The full-time course has one start point in September.

Modules

This map is an indicative list of compulsory modules for 2018/2019 full-time undergraduate courses only. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module are subject to change in future years, and according to the mode of study, entry date, award type. In the event of any full-time 2018-2019 compulsory modules changing, we will contact offer holders as soon as possible to inform or consult them as appropriate.

Year 1 compulsory modules
Digital Photography for VFX
Production Skills for VFX
Introduction to CGI
Digital Compositing 1
Year 2 compulsory modules
Scripting Concepts for VFX
Visualisations
Digital Compositing 2
3D Modelling for VFX
Junior VFX Team Project
Dynamics and Simulation for Visual Effects
Year 3 compulsory modules
FX Portfolio Project
Senior Team VFX Project
Lighting Techniques
FX Research Project
Employability for Visual Effects and Games

Entry requirements

We use UCAS points in our offer making and welcome a wide range of qualifications.

  • Typical UCAS offer: 112 points
  • A levels: BBC
  • BTEC: DMM

Facilities

Careers

Our graduates have seen incredible industry success, with former students having worked on major films like Thor and Gravity – the latter winning an Oscar for its visual effects. Staffordshire alumni can be found working for some of the best CGI and VFX houses in the world, including Double Negative, Squint Opera, The Mill, Flipbook Studios, Framestore and many more.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching

You will be taught through a combination of lectures, seminars, workshops and laboratory practicals. Seminars enable you to discuss and develop your understanding of topics covered in lectures in smaller groups of around 16-18 students. In addition, you will have timetabled meetings with your personal tutor at least twice a year. You will be taught in first-class learning spaces throughout your course. Many of our courses are accredited or recognised by professional, statutory or regulatory bodies.

Assessment

Your course will provide you with opportunities to test your understanding of your subject informally before you complete the formal assessments that count towards your final mark. Each module normally includes practice or ‘formative’ assessments, for which you receive feedback from your tutor. Practice assessments are developmental and any grades you receive for them do not count towards your module mark. There is a formal or ‘summative’ assessment at the end of each module. This includes a range of coursework assessments, such as essays, reports, portfolios, performance, presentations, final year, independent project and written examinations. The grades from formal assessments count towards your module mark.

Learning support

In addition to the excellent support you will receive from your course teaching team, our central Academic Skills team provides group and one-to-one help to support your learning in a number of areas. These include study skills (including reading, note-taking and presentation skills); written English (including punctuation and grammatical accuracy); academic writing (including how to reference); research skills; critical thinking and understanding arguments; and revision, assessment and examination skills (including time management). Our Student Enabling Centre supports students with additional needs such as sensory impairment, or learning difficulties such as dyslexia.

Additional support

Our Student Enabling Centre supports students with additional needs such as sensory impairment, or learning difficulties such as dyslexia.

Feedback

Your course will provide you with opportunities to test your understanding of your subject informally before you complete the formal assessments. Each module normally includes practice or 'formative' assessments for which you receive feedback from your tutor. Practice assessments are developmental and any grades you receive for them do not count towards your module mark. There is a formal or 'summative' assessment at the end of each module and the grades from formal assessments count towards your module mark. You will normally receive feedback on coursework assessments within 20 working days following the date of submission. Examination feedback may take a variety of formats. However, as a minimum, generic feedback will be made available to all students who take written examinations.

Staff

You will be taught by an expert teaching team whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course. The team includes senior academics and professional practitioners with industry experience. Postgraduate research students who have undertaken teaching training may also contribute to the teaching of seminars under the supervision of the module leader. Our teaching is research-informed and 72% of our full-time staff are Fellows of the Higher Education Academy.

Dan McCarthy
Dan McCarthyCourse Leader

Dan has extensive knowledge of software and techniques used in visual effects, particularly Maya, PFtrack and Nuke. His research interests are around the meeting of art and technology, especially when it comes to simulation and computational geometry.

Read full profile

For the academic year 2018/19 the tuition fees for this course are:

Mode of study
Full-time
UK / EU / Channel Islands
£9,250 per year of study
International (Non-EU)
£11,100 per year of study

For the academic year 2019/20 the tuition fees for this course are:

Mode of study
Full-time
UK / EU / Channel Islands
£9,250 per year of study
International (Non-EU)
£11,320 per year of study

UK, EU and Channel Island students: This tuition fee is agreed subject to UK government policy and parliamentary regulation. If the UK government passes appropriate legislation, the fee for subsequent years of study may increase in each academic year. But this increase will not exceed the rate of inflation as measured by RPIX**. Any change in fees will apply to both new and continuing students. The University will notify students of any change as early as possible. Further information about fee changes would be posted on the University’s website once this becomes available.

**RPIX is a measure of inflation equivalent to all the items in the Retail Price Index (RPI) excluding mortgage interest payments.

International (Non-EU) students: Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course, as long as you complete it in the normal time-frame (i.e. no repeat years or breaks in study).

Apply

Stoke-on-Trent campus
BSc (Hons)
Full-time
17 September 2018
Stoke-on-Trent campus
BSc (Hons)
Full-time
09 September 2019

Rules and regulations

If you are offered a place at Staffordshire University, your offer will be subject to our rules, regulations and enrolment conditions, which may vary from time to time.

Students of Staffordshire University enter into a contract with us and are bound by these rules and regulations, which are subject to change. For more information, please see: University Policies and Regulations.

Have you considered?

19/06/2018 11:50:29 / CGI and Visual Effects / Full-time / 8.0 / SSTK-10695