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Animation Master of Fine Art, MA (eca)

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MFA Animation - 21 Months (Full-time)
Fees
MA (eca) Animation - 1 Year (Full-time)
Fees

Fees & costs information

Where available, individual programme fees are linked above. For details information on fee status, policies and payment see:

Contact information
Edinburgh College of Art Postgraduate Admissions
Phone: +44 (0)131 650 4086
Email: hsspg@ed.ac.uk
Jared Taylor (Programme Director)
Phone: +44 (0)131 651 5964
Email: jared.taylor@ed.ac.uk
Address: Edinburgh College of Art Postgraduate Admissions
College of Humanities and Social Science Postgraduate Office, The University of Edinburgh
David Hume Tower, George Square
Central Campus
Edinburgh
EH8 9JX

Animation is a fantastically diverse medium, and its possibilities are expanding continually. Animators are dealing with new platforms for delivery, new technologies for production, and new audiences as the theories and contexts of animation are being developed and understood.

Animation has become an integral element of most feature production through VFX pipelines, documentary production through the use of data visualisation and improved compositing techniques, and a vital part of any interactive production.

Entry requirements

A UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent. Any appropriate professional experience will also be considered.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your spoken and written English.

IELTS minimum score
  • IELTS total 6.5 (at least 6.0 in each module)
Other accepted tests and scores
  • TOEFL-iBT: Total 92 (at least 20 in each module)
  • PTE(A): Total 61 (at least 56 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)
  • CPE Grade C; CAE Grade B

Find out more about our language requirements:

How to apply

This programme requires the submission of a portfolio and study proposal.

Your portfolio should reflect the following criteria:

  • Demonstration of life drawing ability
  • Confident use of a variety of drawing media and techniques
  • Confident use of colour
  • Evidence of sequencing or pattern in folio (drawings/prints of objects changing state or drawings/prints of repeating pattern, for example)
  • Evidence of narrative or story telling (written evidence or story boarding or comic strips, for example)
  • Competent use of video codecs
  • Competent use of animation and compositing software
  • Animated films, loops, cycles or tests

A study proposal of up to 500 words is also required as part of your application. This should reflect on what you have explored or discovered during your undergraduate degree, or other previous experience, and explain how you intend to develop this further, both practically and theoretically, at Masters level.

Find out more about how to apply:

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Programme description

In order to address the wide range of potential interests within the discipline of animation the postgraduate animation courses at ECA are non-prescriptive in terms of methodology, and of output, and a large part of your research work on the course will relate to both your chosen way of working and how to position yourself in the wider milieu of animation.

The courses are not a substitute for previous animation experience or education; animation is a discipline in which there are no shortcuts. What they are designed to do is to enhance and supplement a previous specialisation, whether that was in animation, or not, with an awareness of how to affect dynamic transformation and movement, whether it’s upon a product, an environment, a data set or a narrative, and in order to achieve the above, you will be required to be resourceful, critical, and above all independent.

We are not analogue, we are not digital, we are not practice, we are not theory. We are all those and more, we are a synthesis, we are a hybrid, we are animation.

Programme structure

The main focus of your programme will be the production of a short animated film. Although there is no set limit, most students produce a piece of between five and 12 minutes in length. This will be part of a substantive body of practical and written work that will also be submitted for assessment.

While the MA can be completed as a standalone degree in one year, the MA and MFA programme streams are interlocking and continuation to the MFA is possible.

Both programmes include a combination of practical studio work, theory, written studies, professional practice preparation, and a lecture/seminar series, which explores the wider context of your discipline.

Career opportunities

Our graduates have an increasing set of opportunities to consider upon leaving us. Our graduates find work in four main arenas:

  • Broadcast animation
  • Interactive animation
  • Compositing and visual effects
  • Data visualisation

These areas of employment are all expanding, the entertainment sector usually expands in times of recession, and as people feel the need to analyse and understand what is happening in that recession then the opportunities for data visualisation similarly increase.

There is a strong tendency towards independence in our graduates, many of whom have gone on to careers as award winning independent filmmakers. Those who have followed the studio route have ended up working at a variety of commercially important companies such as the BBC, Channel 4, Rushes, Aardman, Laika, Passion Pictures, Blue Zoo, Tiger Aspect, KoLik, and Nexus Productions, or with directors such as Tim Burton and Sylvain Chomet.

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