Foundation Degree (FdSc) 3D Animation and Games Development

Key Details

  • Available at
    Rhos-on-Sea
  • Level
    4+5
  • Study Mode
    Part-time, Full-time
  • Programme Area
    Computing, Digital Technologies and Games Development, Media, TV and Film
  • Course Length

    Full-time: 2 years OR Part-time: 4 years. Also available on a modular basis.

  • Course Type
    Degrees (HE)
  • UCAS Codes
    6T49
  • Awarding Body
    Bangor University
  • Bilingual
    n/a

Course Description

Would you like a challenging career working within the computer games industry? Do you have a passion for animation?

Computer gaming is now a multi-billion pound industry around the globe. To cope with this growing demand, the industry needs increasing numbers of games developers.

This course prepares you to become one of those specialists, and allows you to fulfil a number of roles in this varied sector. Throughout the course you will benefit from an outstanding learning environment, with state-of-the-art technology, open access computer facilities and excellent tutor support.

This course provides a route into the creative and fast moving games development and animation professions, giving you knowledge and practical skills across a range of areas. It is suitable if you have studied at Level 3 (or equivalent) and would like to progress into a number of career paths including 3D modeller, animator and games developer.

The course gives a firm understanding of many core areas of computer games development, including 3D modelling and animation, audio, programming and user interface design.

As well as the broad base of knowledge, you will gain professional skills that are vital to your career development, such as teamwork and problem-solving. You will develop an innovative, multi-skilled and flexible approach to your work, as well possessing a wealth of technical expertise.

Grŵp Llandrillo Menai is a member of the PlayStation®First Academic Programme run by Sony Interactive Entertainment Europe (SIEE), which provides access to professional development hardware and software tools for both staff and students.

Additional information

More detailed information on Modules is to be found in the ‘Additional Campus/Course Information’ section.

Fees

Visit the Financial Support and Finance page for more information.

More detailed information on other costs associated with your course and work placements/work experience (if applicable) will be outlined in the programme validation document and explained to you at your interview.

Start date

September

Entry Criteria

Academic requirements:

  • Applicants will normally be expected to have gained 72 UCAS points where 56 points are from a computing or media-related level 3 course, or similar A2 subjects
  • GCSE passes at Grade C or above (or Key Skill equivalent) in Mathematics, Welsh (first language)/English and Science
  • If you do not have the above qualifications you may be considered on an individual basis through a demonstration of relevant experience, potential and motivation
  • Students with relevant equivalent overseas qualifications will be considered
  • It is possible for experienced practitioners to enter the programme with NVQ 3 qualifications.

Language requirements:

  • Good proficiency in Welsh/English, with equivalent GCSE grade C or above
  • Any degrees, diplomas or certificates eligible above should have been taught and assessed in Welsh/English
  • For overseas applicants, for entry onto Level 4: IELTS 5.5 or higher (with no element less than 5.0)
  • For overseas applicants, for entry onto Levels 5: IELTS 6.0 or higher (with no sub-part less than 5.5).

All places are subject to satisfactory interview.

Delivery

You will learn through a blend of the following:

  • Interactive lectures
  • Practical workshops
  • Group discussions / activities
  • Guest speakers
  • Virtual learning environment (MOODLE)
  • Online Tutorials
  • Learning is participative, informal and full of opportunities for individual exploration and creativity.
  • Industrial placement may also form part of the course.

Timetable

  • Full-time: 2 years, 2 days per week (typically 9.00 am – 5.00 pm)
  • Part-time: 4 years, 1 day per week (typically 9.00 am – 5.00 pm)

Contact:

Jordan Edwards (Programme Leader): edward2j@gllm.ac.uk

Diane Roberts (Administration): robert18d@gllm.ac.uk

Assessment

The course is assessed through a blend of the following:

  • Practical and theoretical assignments
  • Reports
  • Oral presentations
  • Project work
  • Portfolios
  • Work-based assessment
  • Group/team-based assignments
  • Journals and reflective work

Feedback

Where relevant, assessments will be marked and returned to students with constructive and developmental feedback. Effective feedback combines information which enables students to understand the strengths and limitations of their past performance, and information which enables them to recognise how future performance can be improved. Students will be provided with feedback in a timely manner and this feedback will justify how the grade has been awarded. Students will have the opportunity to reflect on the feedback given and identify their strengths, things they found challenging and areas for development that they will feed forward to their next assessment. Feedback will include linking evidence to assessment criteria to demonstrate how the student will have met the learning outcomes.

Progression

This qualification will allow individuals to enter into relevant employment in the sector or progress to Level 6 of an Honours degree. It will prepare you to enter the games industry as a freelancer or as part of a larger organisation.

“The UK games industry employs over 9,000 highly skilled development staff, 80 per cent of whom are employed outside of London. 80 per cent of the workforce in game studios such as Climax, Jagex, Kuju Entertainment, Rebellion and Ubisoft Reflections are qualified to degree level or above” (Tiga, 2013).

Campus Information Rhos-on-Sea

Unit information

For every 10 credits, students should engage with around 100 notional hours of learning. This will be approximately 30% direct learning contact and 70% independent student learning.

The course consists of the following modules:

Level 4

Fundamental Programming (20 Credits)
The aim of this module is to introduce learners to the fundamental concepts used in typical programming languages. Learners will be expected to create basic, logic driven applications using a range of standard techniques. Although the project scope is very small for the applications, it is expected that proper conventions are used in the projects, from initial conception, through to finished product.

Games Study Skills (10 Credits)
This module aims to develop the study skills of the learners through the medium of their preferred subject area, enabling the production of sound academic writing, the introduction of critical thought and basic research skills. It will enable students to develop skills in academic writing, the use of academic conventions, information research, reflection and the management and organisation of their work.

Industry and Employability (20 Credits)
This aim of this module is to introduce a wider knowledge of the games industry and how to participate within it, whilst looking at how improve and develop student soft skills. The module will cover employability aspects as well as looking at the growing indie scene and the benefits of being self-employed.

The module will introduce growing projects within the industry such as Tranzfuser, UK Games Fund, Grads in Games, and Global Game Jams and how they support students and why they should look and consider these activities. We will look at the economical impact of the industries and how games will shape the country/world

Introduction to 3D Modelling and Animation (20 Credits)
This module aims to introduce learners to basic 3D modelling and animation principles and techniques used to create assets for games. Learners will be guided through the process of developing an idea for a model and animation to be used in a computer game. They will be given an opportunity to develop that model and animation using appropriate software such as Autodesk Maya and Mudbox.

Introduction to Character Modelling (10 Credits)
This module aims to introduce learners to basic 3D character modelling principles and techniques. Learners will be guided through the process of developing an idea for a character to be used in a computer game. They will be given an opportunity to develop that character using appropriate software such as Autodesk Maya and Mudbox.

Level Creation (10 Credits)
This module aims to introduce learners to the fundamentals of level design found throughout the games industry. Learners will be guided through the processes of various methods of designing a level, which will then be modelled using industry standard techniques and software.

Level Mechanics (10 Credits)
This module will introduce learners to interactive environments through the use of a game engine. Learners will gain an understanding of the process of game creation, including the main objective of a level, and the supplementary elements an environment may contain. Using this knowledge, they will gain the ability to create level objectives, and supporting interactivity using industry standard programming languages.

User Interface and Experience (20 Credits)
This module will enable learners to develop an understanding of the basic concepts of interactive design for media. The learners will also gain an appreciation of Human Computer Interaction (HCI) theory in interface design and how to embed this in a game field. Learners will also develop an understanding of the basic principles and theories of audio production including the understanding of digital recording principles, how to capture, edit and embed their sounds within an application. The audio will be used to support the core UI designs, as well as enhancing game play elements of a basic application.

Level 5

Character Modelling and Animation (20 Credits)
This module aims to further develop the learner’s ability working with 3D models and animations. In this module learners will examine the necessary pipeline to creating computer game-ready characters and preparing those characters to interact with objects in the computer game world.

Games Development (20 Credits)
This module will extend the learners existing knowledge of games design and development. Building on these two disciplines, learners will be able to develop original games that vary in complexity. Students will learn how to properly scope a project, and be able to plan, create and test the completed projects to at least a beta stage of development.

Games Industry Research Project (20 Credits)
The module aims to enable students to apply a range of research skills appropriate to study of the creative industries in general and games development in particular. Through a practice dissertation, the module will prepare them for either further studies at Level 6 or career related research.

Lighting and Rendering Techniques (10 Credits)
This module aims to enable students to fully light, render and present their work to a professional level. Students will further develop knowledge and understanding of the lighting process for varying outcomes, and the rendering process that allows them to be viewed.

Methodology Driven Project (20 Credits)
This module aims to give students practical experience of planning and executing a games project whilst following a chosen methodology. Learners will be taught a variety of current working methods and be expected to make an informed choice on which methodology would suit their group project. Working as a group allows a larger project to be accomplished than would be feasible working alone. Individuals will contribute to the initial design of the project and then carry out agreed tasks towards the finished product. The module highlights the importance of a coherent project plan, regular progress reviews and effective group working.

Mixed Reality Development (10 Credits)
In this module, learners will develop content for mixed reality domains. This includes looking at the existing market of mixed reality applications, and a possible deployment strategy for a planned application. Learners will appreciate the target platform when producing planning documentation for their application, whilst learning about the considerations of mixed reality space and scale. Learners will learn the correct approach to developing content for mixed reality and the programming libraries that will need to be utilised.

Testing and Optimisation (10 Credits)
Through the programme, students will develop a range of applications that vary in regard to type, size, and complexity. However, to develop projects in a professional manner, certain techniques and standards should be in place to ensure that project has the scope to grow or be deployed efficiently on a range of platforms including efficient development, and proper testing strategies.

Texture Design and Application (10 Credits)
This module aims to further develop the student’s ability to create textures and materials that they can apply to existing models. Students will understand the processes of creating PBR materials and textures from scratch, and make use of relevant industry standard software to aid in the process.

Would you like to apply for this course?

Part Time

Applications are made through the college.

Rhos-on-Sea

Full Time

Applications are made through UCAS.

Awarding Body