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Course summary

Visual Effects (VFX) is a continually evolving and exciting subject that is applied in many different areas of the industry, including film, television, games and commercials. With a focus on professional practice, this course gives you the opportunity to use industry standard software and develop fundamental skills required for employment opportunities in the VFX industry by creating a strong portfolio of work to display your talent. This course is offered as a four-year programme, including an initial Foundation Year. The Foundation Year will allow you to develop your academic study skills and build confidence in your abilities, identifying your own strengths and development needs for progression onto an undergraduate programme. Why study at Buckinghamshire New University? At BNU we focus on preparing you for work in the industry, helping you to stand out to employers when you graduate. Led by our enthusiastic and dedicated team of industry-savvy practitioners and experienced academics, you will have the freedom to explore all areas of visual effects. During your time with us you may also get access to guest lectures and can benefit from live project briefs, masterclasses and plenty of networking opportunities. On this dynamic course you’ll have access to all the industry-standard equipment you need to bring your ideas to life, such as a VR lab, motion capture studio and state or the art face capture kit and X-sens suits. What facilities can I use? We’ve made sure you have access to industry-standard equipment. Our labs give you access to software including:

  • Maya
  • Nuke
  • Adobe Creative Cloud
  • Substance
  • Renderman
  • ZBrush.
Most of our 3D animation is currently done in Maya. To combine live TV with computer graphics you will use VizRT. For modelling you’ll use ZBrush, Marvellous Designer and a range of other pieces of software commonly used in industry. We review the list every year. We have the latest equipment used in many films, TV shows and commercials. A motion capture studio, renderfarm, and even VR facilities for this increasingly important area in delivery and development. You’ll have access to a stop motion studio and up-to-date camera equipment. What will I study? We’ve structured the course to build up your skills during your time with us and you’ll learn everything you need to know to be career-ready upon graduation. Starting with the fundamentals, we’ll help you develop CGI and animation skills to a professional level, and cover everything you’ll need to create realistic scenes and believable, engaging characters. You’ll use 3D modelling to create objects and characters and learn about the pipeline of a professional project. Throughout your degree, you’ll learn how to integrate your objects and characters into existing footage to create stunning scenes, which could even include destruction simulation You’ll also learn how to build an organic character using industry standard sculpting and character FX techniques. Opportunity modules are a key part of the BNU curriculum. You'll choose modules in both your first and second year from a broad selection in areas such as sustainability, entrepreneurship, creativity, digital skills, personal growth, civic engagement, health & wellbeing and employment. Opportunity modules are designed to enable you to develop outside the traditional boundaries of your discipline and help you to further stand out from the crowd to future employers. By your final year, you’ll have found the specialism you want to focus on in the industry. Your projects will give you the opportunity to hone your skills, work in realistic industry scenarios and have opportunities to collaborate with students on other creative courses at the University.

Modules

Foundation year Preparing for Success: Knowledge and Creativity Preparing for Success: Self-development and Responsibility Inquiry Based Learning Digital Media Computing Essentials Year one Core Modules Introduction to 3D Modelling Texturing and Look Development Lighting and Rendering Animation Principles and the Moving Figure Visual Narrative Opportunity Modules 2 x 10 credit year one Opportunity modules Year two Core Modules Compositing Digital Sculpting Character FX Advanced 3D Modelling Optional Modules Plan your showreel (placement) Rigging Project Simulated FX Opportunity Modules 2 x 10 credit year two Opportunity modules Year three Core Modules Industry Production Project Portfolio Showreel Optional Modules Creative Project: Preproduction Creative Project: Production

Assessment method

Our BNU teaching team are industry-professionals, with years of experience working in the sector and training future generations of talented digital artists. Through their support and the course, you’ll gain the skills and knowledge you need within the industry. You’ll also have the opportunity to work with guest lecturers, take part in a range of workshops and work on a load of live briefs. With the busy nature of the studios, and London being so close, there will be a constant flow of talented animators for you to learn from. You’ll spend time learning and practicing the skills required by each unit before undertaking summative assessments the form of projects which will enable you to apply and combine their newfound skills together in a meaningful way while tackling tasks commonly found in the industry. Classes will take place in appropriate computer labs which are equipped with advanced computers and will allow you to explore the subject to the standard that a junior professional will be able to achieve. You’ll attend classes each week with a lecturer present and during these sessions you will have the opportunity to ask questions and get real time responses and feedback from both lecturers and other learners. Normally these will begin with a group seminar or demonstration and then break into 1:1s where you will have the opportunity to discuss your individual progress directly with your lecturer. Sometimes these seminars will be used for presentations and review in a manner that mimics the dailies process in industry. In addition to this there will be video based lecture content that will be focused on the demonstration of essential skills and clarification and expansion of key concepts and techniques. This will be facilitated via our online learning platform, where you will be able to access sets of recorded lectures which will each be on average 10 minutes long. Other learning techniques that will be employed appropriately to the situation include: Demonstrations for new techniques Group work Video feedback Peer review Use of books, magazines, video and online resources Research methods You will be regularly set formative tasks related to the weekly content or be working towards their own project objective as agreed with the lecturers. This will enable you to apply your learning in new contexts. You will also be able to submit your work for asynchronous formative review from the lecturer which will be delivered as a video commentary on your work. You will also be expected to join a closed online group where you will be able to discuss the work and ask questions throughout the week. It is expected that both lecturers and students will contribute and answer questions. This will also be a place for you to post your work for peer discussion and review. Assessments will be largely practical coursework along with critical analysis and evaluation which will come mainly in the form of essays and presentations. The practical elements will mimic the kind of work that junior artists will carry out in industry, as far as reasonably practicable.


How to apply

Application codes

Course code:
VEF4
Institution code:
B94
Campus name:
Buckinghamshire New University
Campus code:
-

Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Foundation

International applicants

For information about applying to Buckinghamshire New University as an International applicant, please visit https://www.bucks.ac.uk/study/international

Entry requirements

Qualification requirements

Applicants who do not meet the minimum requirements for the 3-year undergraduate programme, or those who do not feel fully prepared for a Level 4 course, will be considered for the 4-year programme including a Foundation Year.


Unistats information

Operated by the Office for Students

There is no data available for this course. For further information visit the Discover Uni website.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

Channel Islands £9250 Year 1
Republic of Ireland £9250 Year 1
England £9250 Year 1
Northern Ireland £9250 Year 1
Scotland £9250 Year 1
Wales £9250 Year 1
EU £15000 Year 1
International £15000 Year 1

Additional fee information

Most courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. You could benefit from financial support through a bursary or scholarship during your time as a student. For more details visit our financial support, bursaries and scholarships section.

Sponsorship information

Buckinghamshire New University offers a range of bursaries and scholarships. For more information, please visit https://www.bucks.ac.uk/study/fees-and-funding/financial-support-bursaries-and-scholarships

Visual Effects with Foundation Year at Buckinghamshire New University - UCAS