BA single honours Animation Production 2020/21

Year of entry

Animation Production offers you the chance to learn the broad range of creative and technical skills needed to produce camera-based stop-frame animation as well as computer-based 2D and 3D animation. Furthermore, your creative development will be complemented by a developed understanding of the historical and contemporary debates that inform animation production.

Animation Production teaching staff lead the delivery of Canterbury Anifest, an annual international animation festival held in Canterbury since 2007. In recent years Canterbury Anifest has welcomed speakers who have worked at Aardman, Disney, DreamWorks, and Pixar. Animation Production students get free passes to Canterbury Anifest, which gives them opportunities to network with influential industry insiders.

As well as gaining an advanced understanding of animation pre-production processes, such as screenwriting, storyboarding and character design, you will also learn to use industry-standard software in the production of animated films in each year of the degree programme. You will also have the opportunity to participate in international exchanges.

This new, production-focussed course will be delivered in well-equipped facilities, which will boast interdisciplinary creative spaces supporting both individual and group-based work. You will be taught by animation industry practitioners, led by Dr Chris Pallant, an internationally renowned animation researcher.

You will explore areas including:

  • animation production from concept to completion
  • a range of animation styles including stop frame, 2D and 3D
  • how to be an effective storyteller
  • how to prepare yourself for a successful career in animation production

"Animation surrounds us on a daily basis, whether on television, billboards, websites, or your mobile phone. By studying Animation Production you will gain skills and confidence to engage with this media landscape in both practical and critical ways."

Senior Lecturer Dr Chris Pallant


Animation is the most pervasive method of visual storytelling today and if you are looking for a course that teaches a combination of digital, hand-drawn and model-based animation skills within an industry-focused context, our new BA Animation Production would be an excellent choice. You will receive practical tuition in the creative processes that underpin the animated form including scriptwriting, storyboarding, cinematography, drawing, modelling, animating, editing, and production management. You will also deepen your understanding of the animated form through complimentary contextual, historical, and theoretical study. In this way, you will develop professional skills and understandings of the entire animation production process, which will equip you to compete for a wide range of technical, creative and production-based jobs in animation-focused industries.


Dr. Chris Pallant, who is the Programme Director for BA Animation Production, currently serves as Vice President for the Society for Animation Studies, and has published three books concerned with the medium of animation: Demystifying Disney (2011), Animated Landscapes: History, Form and Function (2015), and Storyboarding: A Critical History (2015).

You can study French, German, Italian, Mandarin Chinese and Spanish as part of, or alongside, your course.

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You will study a range of animation-intensive practical, contextual, and career-development modules over the course of your degree. In broad terms, year one will provide you with an introduction to digital and non-digital forms of animation, year two will deepen your expertise and knowledge of the animated form, while year three will provide you with an opportunity to work on a major practical project. Throughout your time with us, regular visits from current professional practitioners to the course will enrich your studies and offer valuable up-to-the-minute insights into industry skills and practices.

Core modules

Year 1

Introduction to Digital Animation 20 credits

You will be introduced to the traditional principles of animation. Learning skills with 2D animation software you will create a short animation on a specified theme whilst learning the different processes involved in the production of a short animation.

Animation Principles 20 credits

In this module you will explore in detail the key principles of animation through a series of short critical reflections and practical exercises. Mastering these principles will provide a solid foundation for all future practical work across all forms of animation: 2D, 3D, stop motion, and hand drawn.

Visual Recording and Research 20 credits

This module explores and develops the student’s ability to respond to visual stimuli, through recording, selection and analysis, applying an increasingly sophisticated and personal set of techniques, including 2D, 3D and Digital Media methodologies. It will develop visual ideas towards outcomes that confirm an ability to select and use appropriate materials, processes and environments.

Creative Literacy 20 credits

Students will be introduced to creative development processes in their entirety – initially this will take the form of exploring creative processes relevant to case study animations and related creative projects. Once students have been given a top-level overview of the design process they will be led through the design process within sequential workshop sessions each with a different focus. Stages will include: research, idea generation, concept development, prototyping, evaluation and testing, presentation and completion.

Animation: Contextual and Historical Perspectives 1 20 credits

The module aims to challenge, stimulate and inform students in relation to significant developments in the dynamic and evolving nature of animation exploring the relationship of animation to other art forms and to connect animation with the broader contexts of visual culture. Additionally, students will be introduced to a selection of animation techniques and develop an understanding of the work of a range of significant animators and animations.

Animation Production 20 credits

Following the Semester 1 module, Introduction to Digital Animation, in this module students are introduced to a range of animation techniques and technology ranging from the most basic 'hand-made' to the use of software such as Adobe After Effects. Students produce individually and in groups to produce a short animation showreel. 

Year 2

3D Computer Animation 20 credits

Through a series of workshops you will learn the basics of 3D computer animation, modelling, texturing and rigging. Once you have the relevant skills, you will create a short 3D animation set on a particular theme.

2D Computer Animation 20 credits

This module explores techniques including character design and acting in animation to strengthen your animation techniques. Workshops will cover areas including lip synching and facial expressions as well as focusing on the principles of animation. The techniques that you learn will be used to create a short 2D animation on a specified theme.

Animation: Contextual and Historical Perspectives 2 20 credits

A follow-up module to Animation: Contextual and Historical Perspectives 1 designed to significantly deepen students’ knowledge of a range of contextual and historical perspectives that might help to inform their future practical work.

Creative Film Practice 20 credits

This module builds on the film and animation work completed in Year 1. Students will be given further tuition in specialist moving image production and post-production technologies and will work towards the development of a short creative film from the initial concept to the final.

Year 3

Work Related Learning 20 credits

The module aims to prepare students for entry into employment in the creative sector by developing awareness of: commercial expectations and practices, presentation and pitching, CV writing, portfolio management and team-working. The module aims to support students in drawing upon the strengths of their subject-specific practical and theoretical work developed over the duration of their studies, to apply this within a work-based learning context, and to reflect upon strengths, weaknesses and opportunities for further development.

Pre-Production: Final Project 20 credits

This module aims to support students in developing extensive understanding of the pre-production phases of animation production. Students will learn to adopt industry animation planning and pre-production processes, producing an appropriate pitch / concept proposal for an animation of their choice, and then develop this into a pre-production portfolio.

Final Project 40 credits

The module aims to support students in demonstrating the conceptual and technical expertise they have acquired throughout the programme with specific emphasis placed upon the realisation of an animated film previously presented in the pre-production module. Students will be employ multi / inter disciplinary skills, problem solving, and awareness of the entirety of the animation production process to complete a film based upon the pre-production submission (there is scope for people to work in groups on larger projects).

Critical Creative Reflection: Final Project 20 credits

This module provides students with the chance to critically reflect on their final-year major project. As well as reviewing aspects of the creative workflow (from pre-production, through production, and culminating with post-production), this module also provides students with a chance to explore how their creative practice fits within – and even contribute to – the broader creative landscape of their chosen medium.

Likely optional modules

Year 2

Global Experience in Media, Art and Design 20 credits

This module aims to develop students’ potential for intercultural awareness, while also developing their employability and work-related skills for a wide variety of professions related to the media, culture and communication industries. It will do so by engaging students in a media project conducted abroad. In order to complete this project, they will need to apply the skills that they have learnt throughout their degree and engage with the host culture and institution in order to develop their appreciation of cultural differences and how these may affect their professional practices.

Industry Perspectives 20 credits

This module aims to develop students’ understanding of the creative sector as an industry, becoming aware of key dynamics within the sector and specific expectations related to employability. These include discipline specific working practices, geographic spread, working structures, team working and inter-personal skills, freelancing and collaborative work, funding streams, developing portfolios / studio setup, taxation, regulation, law and ethics. It also aims to support students in practical terms through supporting the development of key employability skills – the development of a curriculum vitae, portfolio, social media presence, and guidance for introduction.

Editing: Practice and Theory 20 credits

The Editing: theory of Practice module identifies the chronological and historical development of editing procedure and practice. The module marries practice and theory exploring the process of editing through an examination of the theoretical and its relationship with the practical. You will produce a number of short visual exercises as a key element of your learning experience.

Screenwriting 20 credits

The Screenwriting module will provide theoretical study and practical application of the craft of scriptwriting. Students will critically analyse and creatively apply the elementary building blocks of writing for film and television. 

Cinematography: Designing the Frame 20 credits

This module in Cinematography provides students with a practical hands-on approach to working with moving image production technologies. You will be taught how to light, control exposure and compose for the camera. The module is delivered through practical workshops, lectures & screenings.

Year Three

Group Production: Re-animating the music video 20 credits

This module structures a single large group into a production unit in order to work collaboratively to a set brief in a short time span. This module seeks to partly replicate the professional experience of working on a serial animation production where timely collaboration is crucial. The brief will be to re-animate a popular music video, as voted for by the student group, with the aim of producing a new portmanteau video that showcases the varied animation tastes of the class as a whole.

Mixed Media Dissertation 20 credits

This module aims to develop students’ abilities in research, analysis, construction of an academic argument, and modes of articulation, to produce a mixed media dissertation on a chosen subject relevant to animation. A mixed media dissertation may take the form of a written dissertation or an alternate practical form (for example an animation that introduces theoretical concepts). 

Our Animation Production course is designed to introduce you to a wide range of animation aesthetics and contexts. The skills you will gain on the Animation Production course are applicable in a broad range of environments, and are transferable across a wide range of careers. As a graduate from the course you should be suited to working in numerous contexts where critical awareness and technical knowledge are essential requirements. Graduates may also go on to undertake a higher degree at Canterbury Christ Church University or elsewhere.


Tuition Fees for 2020/21 have not yet been finalised. Course webpages will be updated with Tuition Fee information once these have been agreed.

Additional course costs

Although we aim to minimise any additional costs to students over and above the course tuition fee, there will be some additional costs which students are expected to meet.

Costs applicable to all students

Text books Own purchase text books
Travel to other sites Where travel to other sites is required, this will be payable by the student
Library Fees and Fines Where students fail to return loaned items within the required time they will be responsible for the cost of any Library Fees and Fines applicable
Printing & Photocopying The cost of printing and photocopying undertaken by students to support their individual learning are payable by the student
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire / photography are additional costs payable by the student

Course specific costs

Text books No purchase is mandatory.

General principle policy

The University’s general principles policy for additional course fees are set out here

CategoryIncluded in the tuition feeAdditional cost to student
Field trips (including trips abroad and trips to museums, theatres, workshops etc) No, if the trip contributes to the course as an optional module. Yes if the trip is optional.
Travel and accommodation costs for placements  No

Travel and accommodation costs for professional placements within the Education and Health & Wellbeing Faculties.

Travel and accommodation costs for other work placements. 
Text books No Own purchase text books.
DBS / Health checks No Yes
Professional Body registration No Yes
Travel to other sites (e.g. travel to swimming pool for lessons) No Yes
Clothing / Kit Yes, where the clothing / kit is essential for Health & Safety reasons. Yes, where the clothing is kept by the student and not essential for health and safety reasons.
Learning materials Essential learning materials (excluding text books) in connection with the course. Additional materials beyond the standard provision essential for the course or where the costs are determined by the student’s area of interest and the outputs are retained by the student.
Library fees and fines No Yes
Printing and photocopying No Yes
Social events No, unless the event forms an essential part of the course. Yes, unless the event forms an essential part of the course.
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire/ photography are additional costs payable by the student.

On the Animation Production programme outside of scheduled workshops, seminars and lectures, students are supported in working to their own creative rhythms and finding their own creative voices. Taught sessions are typically delivered through a mixture of interactive workshops, seminars and lectures, followed by a phase of individual and group-based project work.

You will also be offered individual tutorials to provide you with guidance about forthcoming assignments and feedback on your academic progress.

A large part of your learning will take place outside the classroom, working on laptops or within the production facilities available in the arts building, and collaborating with other creative students. You will be expected to work independently, directing your own learning, but your tutors will provide you with extensive guidance on how to manage your own independent learning.

Each module has a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE - a dedicated website) with suggestions for further reading, ideas for class discussion and weekly guidance on preparation for forthcoming lectures and seminars. Lecture notes and other digital content will be provided on the VLE to help you learn flexibly and in a way that suits you.

The VLE is of central importance to the delivery of independent creative practice and project work, offering students the space to post work logs / production diaries that are shared with supervisory tutors (and where appropriate team members). This regular reporting ensures that students and tutors remain informed of progress, and enables tutorials, interventions and guidance when needs are identified by students or staff.

All programmes are informed by the University’s Learning and Teaching Strategy 2015-2020

You will be primarily assessed through the production of a range of practical outputs, marked in reference to a set of criteria that recognise the level of study, brief and approach. Some modules will be assessed through other modes including academic essays, reflective commentaries, portfolios, presentations, pitches, and pre-production boards. The variety of assessment methods will help you develop and give evidence of different skills. Assignments are designed to be progressively more challenging, encouraging you to respond to earlier feedback, and to reflect on future directions and required skills. The regulations governing your assessment are in line with the standard arrangements of the University for 20 credit and 40 credit module delivery.

Animation Production is taught in the School of Media, Art and Design’s specialist facilities on our city-centre campus, which include high­ specification Apple Macs, professional standard DSLR cameras, Dragonframe software for stop­frame animation and access to full Adobe Creative Suite software.

Our new art and design building on our Canterbury campus now open. The building has bespoke learning spaces for our art and design students and is equipped with the latest technology.

The School runs an international animation festival, Canterbury Anifest. Students on Animation Production will be encouraged to get involved with the festival whether through free attendance, helping to run the festival or by submitting their animated films for consideration in the Student Film category of the Anifest Awards.

Fact file

UCAS course code

  • W616 Animation Production, BA - 2020/21

UCAS institution code

  • C10


  • 3 years full-time


  • September 2020

Entry requirements



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Last edited 28/08/2019 11:47:00

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Last edited: 28/08/2019 11:47:00