BA (Hons) Visual Effects

UCAS CODE: VEFD
TARIFF: 88 - 112
  • Study Mode: Flexible and Distributed Learning
  • Location: Distance Learning
  • Duration: Three Years
  • Start Date: September 2022

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Using the latest techniques in 3D computer graphics you’ll learn how to create stunning objects and character, and how to put these into real life footage to make believable scenes that will wow audiences around the world.
This online and fast-paced course will teach you the skills and knowledge you need to ensure your industry-ready upon graduation.

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Open Days

We understand that when it comes to deciding where you’d like to study, there are a lot of things to consider. Come along to our Open Day and discover why BNU could be the place for you. You can find out more about your course, meet the course team, and get all your questions answered.

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Application Guide

For everything you need to know about applying, check out our Application Guide. You can find useful information for each stage of your application journey – from before you even apply to what to do if you receive an offer, and everything in between.   

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Students' Union

At BNU, we believe in putting our students first. That’s why we’re the only university in the UK to offer free access to such a diverse and exciting range of activities through our SU – all to enrich your university experience.

Why study this subject?

Whether it is 3D, FX techniques or digital sculpting, a skilled Visual Effects artist can create the illusion of real life. In this industry all roles call for high levels of creativity and passion for storytelling. Your skills will be valuable in any Visual Effects role, including but not limited too;

  • Commercials
  • Films
  • Games
  • Architectural Visualisation

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Why study at Buckinghamshire New University?

At Buckinghamshire New University we focus on preparing you for work in the industry, helping you to stand out to employers when you graduate. With the right teaching and learning opportunities, it’s possible to turn your passion for visual effects into a rewarding and successful career.

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 could benefit from live project briefs and master classes.

You'll be studying a completely practical course – we focus on what you need to know for a career in visual effects; you’ll keep a reflective journal and learn to give presentations like the professionals. From expressiveness, to bringing a character to life you’ll be hands-on in gaining the skills you need.

At BNU we offer small classes across the board, meaning you gain a close-knit community and plenty of one-on-one contact and support with your tutor. Despite this course being delivered online, we offer various study channels and chat channels so you will be supported and feel a part of the wider BNU community when studying with us.

What facilities can I use?

Whilst studying with us you will also use our AppsAnywhere web service, which provides access to many of the software applications you use for learning and studying. AppssAnywhere can be used from your own device or from a University owned PC or laptop, from any location.

You will have access to our specialist software via BNU Anywhere. This includes Maya, Zbrush, Nuke, Marvellous Designer, Adobe suite, Cinema 4D, Dragon Frame amongst others.

 

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, you’ll learn the basics of CGI skills and the basics of animation.

If you have no experience of Visual Effects, don’t worry. You’ll get to grips with tools and techniques early on. We start with the fundamentals, where you’ll learn the basics of CGI and animation skills. Covering 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.

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 and work in realistic industry scenarios.

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How will I be taught and assessed?

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 will receive a set of pre-recorded video lectures each week which will contain the learning content as well as a guidance document on how to use the material. You will be able to complete these at times convenient to yourself. This will last for approximately 10 weeks depending on the module. You will also be given a task to complete which will allow you to apply your learning.

You will be able to submit your progress at regular intervals for a feedback video from the lecturer. There will also be a scheduled group online discussion each week where the lecturer will introduce the topic and invite students to discuss and ask questions.

After the lecturing period is over you will be given an industry focussed practical task for each module and you will also be required to keep a reflective learning journal. At the end of the course you will compile your best work into a showreel.

Useful documents

BA (Hons) Visual Effects (Online) Programme Specification

What are the course entry requirements?

A typical offer will require a UCAS tariff score of: 88 - 112

A minimum of two full A-levels (or equivalent) is required. Every application is considered on an individual basis.

For further details of our international English entry requirements, please visit our international pages.

Applicants who do not meet the minimum requirements for the three-year undergraduate programme, or those who do not feel fully prepared for a degree course, can apply for a four-year programme including a Foundation Year; find out more.

This provides a guide of the modules that make up your course. Please refer to the Programme Specification at the bottom of the Course Details tab for the full breakdown of core and optional modules, as well as the credits needed to complete your degree. You can find more information about how your course is structured on our Academic Advice section.

Year 1 Modules

3D Modelling and Pipeline

Texturing and Look Development

Lighting and Rendering

Animation Principles and The Moving Figure

Visual Narrative

Rigging

Year 2 Modules

Compositing 1

Compositing 2

Modelling and Look Development

Digital Sculpting and Organic Modelling

Destruction Simulation

Character FX

Year 3 Modules

Industry Production Project

Portfolio Piece

Creative Production Project

Showreel

What are the tuition fees

Home

Home, Academic Year 2022 - 2023

£7,400 per year

International

Overseas/International, Academic Year 2022 - 2023

£7,400 per year

From September 2022, those students living in the UK or Republic of Ireland, and EU nationals with settled status in the UK, will be considered Home students.

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.

Questions about fees?

Contact our Enquiries Team:

0330 123 2023

advice@bucks.ac.uk

What are my career prospects?

Throughout your time with us we’ll support you on your journey to your chosen career. We’ll help you to develop crucial skills, encouraging you to become enterprising, employable and good leaders. We also help you find employment after graduation. Have a look at our Careers and Employability pages to find out more.

Our BA (Hons) Visual Effects course will help prepare you for a range of career possibilities in any sector which requires a VFX artist. Our recent alumni have gone onto work for:

  • DNeg
  • Framestore
  • TT Games. (Warner Bros)
  • Mediatonic Games
  • FST
  • Ubisoft
  • Cinesite
  • Airship Studios

Graduates can also choose to study for a postgraduate course.

Course leader

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Rob Penhaligon
  • Senior Lecturer
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Elle Bromfield
  • Lecturer
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Steve Cassar
  • Senior Lecturer
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