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MA Animation (Online)

University of the Arts London
Program overview
1 years 3 months
Full time
Master's degree
Scholarships available

Start dates
09 January 2023

17 April 2023

02 October 2023
University of the Arts London

About this program

MA Animation (Online)

MA Animation (Online) explores both the theory and practice of animation across a broad range of experimental visual media.

MA Animation (Online) will give you the tools to express your creative ideas using a range of visual media.

In an era with unparalleled opportunities for skilled visual communicators, and with advancing technologies changing how the moving image is experienced by audiences, we teach animation as an experimental visual practice.

You’ll be encouraged to test boundaries and experiment to find your own creative voice. You’ll also explore meaningful themes while learning how to engage with audiences through multi-disciplinary approaches, and outline critical ideas in visual culture with reference to contemporary, personal, social, ethical, cultural, political, religious and environmental issues.

Admission requirements

Language requirements

All classes are conducted in English. If English is not your first language, we strongly recommend you let us know your English language test score in your application. If you have booked a test or are awaiting your results, please indicate this in your application. When asked to upload a CV as part of your application, please include any information about your English test score.

  • IELTS 6.5 (or equivalent) is required, with a minimum of 5.5 in each of the four skills.
  • If your first language is not English, you can check you have achieved the correct IELTS level in English on the Language Requirements page.

An applicant will normally be considered for admission if they have achieved an educational level equivalent to an honours degree in either animation, illustration, visual communication, graphic design or closely related subject, and present a portfolio of moving-image work. However, we do not exclude candidates who have graduated from other less strongly aligned disciplines.

This educational level may be demonstrated by:

  • Honours degree (named above);
  • Possession of equivalent qualifications;
  • Prior experiential learning, the outcome of which can be demonstrated to be equivalent to formal qualifications otherwise required;
  • Or a combination of formal qualifications and experiential learning which, taken together, can be demonstrated to be equivalent to formal qualifications otherwise required.

For more information about admission requirements, please visit the university website.

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Program content

Term 1

Experimental Critical Practice and Research

This unit aims to support the development of your individual voice as an animation practitioner. You’ll explore a range of technical and conceptual approaches to animation by producing short-form animation tests, and engage in experimental animation process and practice as you develop your distinct visual voice.

This will be underpinned by critical study that significantly expands your understanding of themes that animation can address in a critical context, alongside a technical program that will ensure you’re able to experiment widely with various animation techniques.

Design for Animation, Narrative Structures and Film Language (20 Credits) In this unit, you’ll engage in a program of theoretical seminars that explore the cinematic underpinning of animation culture and practice. This knowledge will form the technical and conceptual basis for subsequent units of the course.

Term 2

Animation Practice and Process

In this unit, you’ll develop and produce a short animation project of up to 3 minutes, or a body of experiments that form a coherent project. Throughout, you’ll explore a range of technical and conceptual approaches to the workflow of professional animation production.

Working from concept, research and development to pre-production, production and post-production, you’ll outline a critical idea or theme that draws reference to contemporary, personal, social, ethical, cultural, political, religious and/or environmental issues.

Collaborative Unit

You’ll have the opportunity to engage in a specific collaboration with a related course or an external partner. Alternatively, you might undertake a work placement.

Terms 3 and 4

Professional Skills and Situating Practice

You’ll bring together the knowledge, skills and experience gained on the course to produce a self-directed, collaborative project and associated critical investigation.

If, during the course of your studies, you are unable to continue and you decide to exit the course, you may get one of these two possible exit awards:

A Postgraduate Certificate will be awarded on successful completion of the first 60 credits.

A Postgraduate Diploma will be awarded on successful completion of the first 120 credits.

Scholarships & funding

Several scholarship options are available. Please check the university website for more information.

Program delivery

MA Animation is in Full Time mode which runs for 45 weeks over 15 months. You will be expected to commit 40 hours per week to study.


  • The full tuition fee of 2022/23 for local students is £11,220 per course per year.
  • The full tuition fee of 2022/23 for International students is £22,920 per year.


  • Lectures/large group learning
  • Workshop and seminar learning
  • Academic tutorials
  • Individual and group critiques
  • Individual project work
  • Self-Directed learning
  • Assessed assignments
  • Technical workshops
  • Demonstrations

Career paths

Graduates of MA Animation (Online) are equipped to work in an increasingly technologically informed and interdisciplinary design world, with in-depth skills across areas such as:

  • animation and animation production
  • 3D and 2D visual communication
  • narrative and sequential image making
  • typography
  • time-based design.

Throughout your time on the course, you’ll build a portfolio of personal work that will enable you to pursue a successful career as a commercial animator, animation director or other related roles within the field.

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About this institute

University of the Arts London

University of the Arts London (UAL) is ranked 2nd in the world for Art and Design according to the 2022 QS World University Rankings®, for the fourth year in a row. It has an international reputation in art, design, communication,...

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Why study at University of the Arts London

With multiple sites across London, UAL offers endless opportunities to draw inspiration from this global creative hub.

  • UAL has a track record for launching and furthering careers across the creative industries and beyond.
  • Graduates are frequently shortlisted for national and global awards ranging from the Turner Prize to the Oscars.
  • UAL is home to more than 2,400 postgraduate students.
  • The university offers a wide range of theoretical and practice-based research programmes leading to a PhD or MPhil.
  • UAL is ranked among the UK’s top research universities, with 83% of research conducted by UAL students and staff graded as world-leading.
  • UAL has a diverse student community, with students drawn from over 130 countries across the globe.
  • Students are encouraged to draw inspiration from London’s world-famous art galleries, museums and theatres.
  • UAL’s dedicated support service offers useful advice for international students including guidance on funding, visa applications and accommodation.

Contact info

University of the Arts London

272 High Holborn
WC1V 7EY London
United Kingdom

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