Directing Animation at National Film and Television School - UCAS

Course summary

This is the only two-year specialist Directing Animation MA. The Directing Animation MA at NFTS is a globally acclaimed course that offers an unparalleled creative and dynamic learning experience in animation. If you have a flair for visual storytelling, this course equips you with the necessary skills to bring your creative passions to life on the big screen and enables you to evolve as a filmmaker, achieving your aspirations. Our program encompasses both the artistic and commercial worlds of animation - our grad films have won some of the most prestigious festival awards or been developed into world-renowned TV series. All forms of visual storytelling are nurtured across traditional and digital media, including drawn 2D, CGI, stop-motion and life-size pixelation. You will feel empowered to push your creative boundaries and discover your unique voice while exploring new animation techniques and storytelling approaches. Led by some of the most talented artists from across the animation industry, the course combines art school philosophy with state-of-the-art film school facilities. You'll work on projects within a workshop environment that encourages experimentation and innovation and will give you the skills needed to write, direct, and animate films. WATCH: Sam Gainsborough explains the creative process of his graduation film Facing It. (YouTube). During your time at the school, you will collaborate with all the other key departments, including Screenwriting, Editing, Composing, Sound Design, Production Design, Cinematographer and Producing, giving you insight into their practice and how they can take your creative vision to new heights. Upon completing the program, you will have led a complete production team and amassed an impressive portfolio that exemplifies your skills and prepares you for a successful animation career. WATCH: Micky Wozny explains the collaboration process in his graduation film Something Borrowed. (YouTube). Course Facilities Creative Space - As an artist, you'll have access to our facilities that help you grow and develop. During your first year, you'll work in our first-year base equipped with all the necessary art materials to explore visual storytelling with your classmates. Each student gets their own desk area complete with a computer, Cintiq, camera rostrum set up, and all the software you need to get started. In your second year, you'll have your own office to use as a production base to lead your team, as well as the use of the school’s shooting spaces if needed.


All forms of visual storytelling are encouraged and nurtured; giving you the opportunities to work across traditional and digital media including drawn 2D, 3D, stop-motion and life-size pixilation. Students feel empowered to push boundaries; confident in finding their own unique voice, while exploring original new animated techniques and fresh approaches to storytelling. Collaboration is the key to succeeding in the world of animation and it is also central to the ethos of the course and the NFTS. Collaborative workshops with many other filmmaking disciplines across the School fosters a strong team spirit and are an essential tool, enabling animation directors to better understand the role of each crew member and develop expertise across the whole of the production process. Pic of student on set filmingThe first year builds a solid foundation across all aspects of animation. It is filled with inspiring workshops, including improving your animation skills, writing better narratives and developing fresh approaches to design and techniques. In the second year, you will develop, produce and direct your graduation film, leading a fully crewed team who will enable you to bring your vision to life, using the School's incomparable production facilities. The professional pipeline of making films at the NFTS will prepare you to be ‘job ready’ upon entering the highly competitive field of animation while the creative freedom the course gives will help you steer an industry that thrives on innovation in new and pioneering directions.

Assessment method

Assessment based on a dissertation and a graduation film.

Entry requirements

You should have a strong desire to tell unique stories and can embrace alternative and imaginative approaches to visualisation and narrative construction. The ability to clearly articulate your ideas and work well as part of a team is a must due to the collaborative nature of the course and the animation industry. All applicants must show a passion for visual storytelling through their portfolio of work. While a background in animation is desirable, successful applicants have come from many creative environments such model-making, comic books and dance. While many applicants will have a degree from a British or overseas university, in a relevant subject, we will consider applicants who do not have a degree if they have an impressive portfolio, a creative track record or an alternative qualification. If you have any questions, please email [email protected].

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

No fee information has been provided for this course

Additional fee information

No additional fees or cost information has been supplied for this course, please contact the provider directly.

Sponsorship information

NFTS Scholarships available for UK Students.

Directing Animation at National Film and Television School - UCAS