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MA Animation Production

  • Mode of study: Full- or part-time
  • How to apply: Apply directly to us


The MA Animation Production course focuses on practice, theory and professionalism and the ‘critical dialogue’ between them.

This course can be studied full- or part-time from September or full-time from January.

Course information

The MA Animation Production philosophy sees understanding of the traditional principles of animation as fundamental, but these are critically contextualised in relation to technology, history, theory and professional/studio practice.

MA Animation Production offers you the opportunity to demonstrate a systematic and critically-informed understanding of current developments in animation theory and practice. Fundamentally based on a tripartite approach of Practice, Theory and Professionalism – with each element placed in ‘critical dialogue’ with the others – the course will ensure that your research and practice is at the forefront of the discipline.

This course is part of Bournemouth Film School, along with BA (Hons) Animation Production, MA Film Practice, BA (Hons) Film Production as well as BA (Hons) Visual Effects (VFX) for Film and Television. Together we make up the largest film school outside of London.

Animation’s position as an interdisciplinary field that draws from Art and Design, Film, Computing, Fine Art, Graphics (and other areas besides) necessarily means that top-level graduates in the field will have mastered a cross-disciplinary understanding of a range of skills, techniques, theories and discourses.

The overriding objective is to enable all MA Animation Production students to see themselves as part of a ‘community of practice’ (that includes research and critique, and the building of a ‘production culture’), existing not as atomised students ‘doing their own thing’, but as part of a meaningful whole.

You’ll be a BA graduate in Animation or a related discipline. Although we will consider good graduates from other disciplines – having accepted them from Costume, Graphics, Digital Media, Illustration, Modelmaking, Photography and Fine Art in the past – you must have some understanding of the animation production process to prosper on this course.

Our alumni have gone on to work at Aardman, ILM, Lupus Films, Framestore, Pixar, Moving Picture Company and many other companies. We’re proud of the network of AUB graduates who are now employed in animation – many of whom return to talk to current students.

Our MA Animation Production course is one of the courses in the UK eligible for BAFTA Scholarship applications.

The overall aim of this course is to enable you to pursue your interests and specialism – whether 2D/drawn, CG, stop motion or other forms of animation – and produce excellent work that synthesises the ‘strands’ of theory, practice and professionalism.

MA Animation Production consists of three 60-credit units (180 credits for the MA). These are:

1. Defining Practice, Theory and Professionalism
2. Masters Project 1
3. Masters Project 2

Your engagement with the course is via your own specialist practice in Animation – this may involve pre-production, production or post-production specialisms such as character design, storyboarding, concept work, or other specialisms such as puppet-making, or costume design for Animation. You may choose to make an animated film as your final ‘outcome’, but could develop an MA-level body of work through one of these other forms of specialist practice. The three-unit structure enables you to clearly identify and develop your ideas across practical, theoretical and professional modes of understanding, bringing your work to fruition in the 'Masters Project 2' unit.

The part time route offers an ideal opportunity for people who are already working in industry to further develop their specialist skills and practice, and complete a major body of work across a 2-year period. We strongly encourage people to apply who want to examine and interrogate their professional Animation practice, and develop their understanding of the workplace.

Meet the Course Leader

Professor Paul Ward Postgraduate Course Leader MA Animation Production and Post‑Graduate Subject Leader (Moving Image)


Email me

Application process

When you're ready to apply, you'll need to head to our online application form to apply directly to us.

We encourage you to apply early so that you have time to organise accommodation and to arrange for a visa (if required) before you enrol.

We encourage applications from students with a broad range of qualifications and experiences. We'll take into consideration the knowledge and skills that have been developed inside and outside the classroom, as well as your previous qualifications. We aim to interview all applicants who demonstrate the potential to succeed on the course. Interviews are used to assess whether you have the necessary skills and capabilities and whether this programme is appropriate to your interests and aspirations.

The tuition fees you pay will vary depending on the subject area and the type of postgraduate study you're embarking on. The fee that you pay AUB provides the necessary equipment and training for you to complete your course.

We also have a number of progression discounts and bursaries available to go towards paying for your studies.

Computer equipment

You may also choose to buy some items or personal equipment such as a laptop, tablet or computer. This isn't a requirement as desktop and laptop computers are available for you to use in common study areas, including a loan system in the Library.

As part of your application to this course, we’d like to see your portfolio.

You can find out more by viewing our Portfolio Guidelines.

Looking to be inspired? Browse our gallery of student work – you can find more in our Student Stories, too.

Studio and resources

Our studios work in a way that mirrors industry with students working together in a high energy atmosphere. Our state-of-the-art animation studios provide students with access to computer workstations and light boxes. There is also access to a computer suite equipped with specialist software. There are many opportunities on the MA to work with students on our award-winning BA (Hons) Animation Production course.

  • Light boxes (12 Field)
  • Rostrum cameras
  • Dell Workstations
  • Stop Motion booths
  • Line testing workstations
  • Wacom Intuos 4/5
  • Professional lighting Set (Dedo/Kino Flo)
  • Nikon D800 and sundries
  • Canon 650D HD/SD Stills Cameras and sundries
  • Chrome Balls
  • Motion control rig
  • Fujitsu fi-6770 high-speed A3 sheet feed scanners integrated into Harmony
  • A3 Epson DS-50000 scanners
  • Epson GT-20000 scanners
  • 109 TB pixitmedia pixstor Unified Scale-Out NAS
  • Render Farm running Thinkbox Deadline 8 integrated into Maya

  • You’ll also have access to the following:

    • Online Avid Symphony Nitris DX Edit Suite
    • Avid Teaching Lab, plus Workstations for Media Composer and Pro Tools
    • Avid Unity ISIS 32 TB Server to all Edit Suites
    • Avid Pro Tools Edit Suites, plus audio control surfaces
    • Sound recording booths
    • Nuke


  • Dell Workstation PCs all with WACOM Intuos Pro Tablet
  • pixstor File Management System – used for storage
  • Central Render Farm running Deadline Render Management Software and Arnold Renderer


  • Adobe Creative Cloud 2018
  • Harmony 15
  • Storyboard Pro 6
  • Dragon Frame
  • Mari v4
  • Maya 2018
  • Rv (for desktop and dallies playback)
  • ZBrush 4R8
  • Audacity
  • Da Vinci Resolve 15
  • Red Giant (complete site plugins)
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