Animatronics Design student with a laptop and a mask sat at a desk

BSc (Hons) Animatronics Design

TARIFF: 88 - 112
  • Study Mode: Full Time
  • Location: High Wycombe / BNU based at Pinewood Studios
  • Duration: Two Years
  • Start Date: September 2024

Do you want a career which could take you all over the world? Gain skills and knowledge in puppetry, anatomy and mechatronics with our two year fast-track BSc Animatronics Design degree. You’ll be designing, building and creating realistic and lifelike props and objects, that bring stories to life.

This course could help you get your dream job as being part of the team that work endlessly behind-the-scenes in the film, TV and performance industries to solve problems. Upon graduation you could find yourself working in key areas such as; animatronics, elements involving mechanical or electronic engineering, animation, model-making, sculpture, product design, industrial design, and manufacturing.

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No. 1 in England for Student Satisfaction*
*Measured by % of positivity across all questions within the larger providers only: taught or registered population (NSS 2023)
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No. 1 Students' Union in the UK*
*As ranked among taught students at non-specialist HEIs (NSS 2023)
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Top for our response to the cost-of-living-crisis*
*Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023
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5th for learning opportunities*
*NSS 2023
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Top 10 for student support*
*Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023
Why study BSc (Hons) Animatronics Design at BNU?

Our industry standard facilities are here to help you produce your most creative ideas. We will build your confidence in using the latest postproduction software.

Our other specialist resources including;

  • CNC and laser cutter technology
  • highly equipped engineering & modelmaking workshops
  • 3D design studios
  • computer suites
  • electronics/ control and plastic fabrication labs
  • prosthetics lab
  • 3D printing technology.

At every step you’ll be supported by a dedicated team of technicians who will provide you with advice, technical assistance and support to realise your assignment briefs and final project. The University also has a teaching base at the iconic Pinewood Studios, which means there could be opportunities to engage with the community there.

The BSc (Hons) Animatronics Design course is led by a dedicated and experienced course team. Benefit from their industry knowledge and the industry links they bring to the course. Many of our guest lecturers are industry-experts and alongside your lecturers, they’ll nurture your learning and professional development through lectures, workshops and demonstrations. 

As part of the Art, Design and Performance School at BNU, you’ll benefit from a practiced-based course, supported by contextual studies. You’ll also have the opportunity to work collaboratively across the School with other courses, ensuring during your studies you are building a varied network, like you would in the real world.

With London on our doorstep, you’ll be near the world’s best cultural centres, such as theatres, museums and galleries, where you can find a range of inspiration. It also means you may have the opportunity to visit working studios, such as Pinewood Studio. 

What will I study? 

The BSc (Hons) Animatronics Design course enables you to focus your studies towards the design and fabrication of animatronics models using engineering technology.

This taught practical-based course is industry-focused and will provide opportunities for you to engage with a broad range of skills and techniques required within animatronics production for special effects film and TV and associated creative industries.

All modules are designed to develop the practical, theoretical/ critical approaches applied to individual specialism, and will facilitate the design, prototyping and production of polished functional animatronics models for inclusion to an essential portfolio of work.

The course embraces new and emerging techniques and technologies, maintaining currency and diversity through well-established links and communications with the creative industry.

An animated Dinosaur walking through a forest designed by a BNU student
An animated yellow dragon designed by a BNU student

How will I be taught and assessed? 

Taught by industry-professionals, you’ll benefit by learning from lecturers with real sector experience and an insight into working-life. You could also benefit from access to our network of guest speakers, industry experts and successful alumni.

You will be assessed in a variety of ways, from studio projects and workshop and media outcomes to group and individual case studies and written assignments.

BSc (Hons) Animatronics Deisgn Programme Specification

BSc (Hons) Animatronics Design - Additional Course Costs

What are the course entry requirements?

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

UCAS points can be obtained through qualifications such as A levels, T levels, BTEC or an Access to Higher Education course in a relevant subject. Please list all your qualifications on the application form as you will be asked to provide copies when we receive your application.

Applicant must have A levels in a relevant subject such as Maths, Physics, Computer Science or Design Technology is required. Alternatively, a BTEC National Diploma qualification in relevant subject.  

In addition, applicants will need to have a suitably appropriate portfolio of work in areas such as, Animation, Electronics, Mechanical Engineering, Model-making, Sculpture/Model Making, Engineering Product Design, and Manufacturing Design.  

However, as part of the selection process, all applicants are required to attend an interview to demonstrate their strengths in addition to any formal entry requirements.

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


This provides a guide of the modules that make up your course. You can find more information about how your course is structured on our Academic Advice section.

This course has Opportunity modules.

Opportunity modules are a key part of the BNU curriculum. You’ll choose modules in your first 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. Find out more.

What are the tuition fees


Home, Academic Year 2024 - 2025

£11,100 per year


Overseas/International, Academic Year 2024 - 2025

£20,200 per year

Additional course costs and financial support

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?

If you have any questions about the fees above, contact our Enquiries team by calling 0330 123 2023 or emailing

What are my career prospects?

Throughout your time with us we’ll support you on the route to your chosen career. We’ll help you to develop crucial skills, encouraging you to become enterprising, employable and good leaders. Our Careers and Employability Team also help you find employment after graduation.

The multidisciplinary nature of the course will prepare you for a range of career possibilities. Using the skills and knowledge learnt on this course, you could find yourself performing the following roles all over the world:

These include:

  • Animatronics Designer
  • Prosthetics fabricator
  • SFX technician and/ or assistant
  • Props & Modelmaker
  • Structure Engineer
  • Computer Programmer
  • Control & Signal writer
  • Sculptor
  • Character Designer
  • 3D Animator
  • Pre-visualisation Artist
  • Technical Director (TD)
  • Animatronics Engineer
  • Rig-builder
  • Model maker.

You may also wish to stay on at Buckinghamshire New University and study a full-time or part-time postgraduate course, such as MA Special Effects for Film and TV.

Course leader

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Dr Johnny Issapour
  • Course Leader
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Joseph Davies
  • Technical Tutor
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