BA (Hons) Visual Effects
Visual Effects is for anyone interested in creating the stunning visual effects seen each day from the latest Hollywood and televisual epics to the creative innovation of high impact TV adverts. The United Kingdom is renowned for its skilled film makers and now boasts some of the biggest visual effects houses in the world.
Using the finest innovations in technology, this course covers the seamless integration of photo real computer-generated creatures, environments, assets and people. Your studies will cover the key areas of visual effects; from Rotoscoping and Keying to Tracking, Match moving and colour correction. Further in-depth studies such as digital set creation and destruction, matte painting, digital character creation, fluid, cloth and particle dynamics will refine your skills, will support you in becoming an accomplished visual effects artist.
Extensive 3D studies, combined with the development of the visual effect skills mean that this course is the ideal platform to learn how to become a 3D modeller, texture and lighting artist, compositor or rendering technician. This is made possible through excellent tutor support, small class sizes which allow personalised support and the optimum in learning environments. Through this our institution strives to provide an environment which fosters creativity and open discourse.
In your first year you will develop the foundations of your programme of study, in terms of skills and knowledge. In the second year of your course, you will explore your own creative development and visual style, looking at possible career paths prior to your final year. In the final year of study, you will be completing a professional portfolio of work and will be focussing on the areas of personal and professional specialism in the field of visual effects.
WHY SHOULD I CHOOSE THIS PROGRAMME?
If there’s one thing that sets our course apart from others, it’s the outstanding industry contacts we utilise to your benefit. Most of our students take the opportunity to work on real world projects while they are still a student with us. Many students leave here with not just their qualification, but also their first film credits.
We have these great contacts because our tutors have come from the industry and we work hard to maintain partnerships with leading visual effects companies.
In addition, our tutor team is augmented by a variety of industry guest lecturers. This helps make sure that we stay in tune with current trends in the VFX world and helps you start to build your network of contacts.
It’s not just current trends – it’s current software too. We always use the same software that you will be expected to use in your future career. We constantly monitor the industry and review our software to make sure that you will be working on the relevant versions. The same goes for our workstations – industry standard hardware. And our new studio facility based in Mediacity is simply amazing.
Finally, there’s the small, highly-focused class sizes – it means we can give every student the individual guidance and help they need.
Why should you choose this course? Well, why wouldn’t you?
A Futureworks visual effects degree leads to a whole range of different careers – not just film and TV, but also roles in advertising, architecture and product design. There are many industries that now require visual effects professionals.
It’s worth noting that the biggest VFX companies are now based in the UK and the scope for careers is really positive. There are lots of opportunities in this growing and exciting industry for the right people, with the right education and the right experience. And that’s what Futureworks gives you.
The complete list of potential job roles for our students is too wide to list here, but it includes compositors, 3d modellers, R&D, lighting, visual effects operator… and you may end up as a skilled freelancer, working in an agencies or in a film production house – it’s such a wide and growing industry.
But film is where many of our students aim for. And they’ve aimed successfully! Our past students have worked on films such as Guardians of the Galaxy, Paddington, Robocop and Ronin to name just a few.
The final qualification for this programme is awarded by the University of Central Lancashire.
FUTURE START DATES
- September 2022
- September 2023
Tuition Fees are £9,250 per year.
You may be eligible to apply for a student loan from Student Finance. Please see our Tuition Fees page for more information. You may find it beneficial to invest in additional equipment and/or study resources to support your learning. Additionally, there may be the option of attending events outside of Futureworks which would further enhance your studies. We recommend that you budget in the region of £300 to £600 over the duration of the course to cover these expenses.
To be considered for this course, you will require 104 UCAS points.
This could be gained via a number of qualifications, for example:
- BCC or above at A2 Level
- DMM or above at Extended Diploma Level
- M or above at UAL Level 3 Extended Diploma Level
- A proven interest in this area
If you’re unsure how many points you have you can use the UCAS tariff calculator.
Remember that qualifications such as Graded Examinations in Music Performance and Arts Award (Gold) can also count towards your UCAS points – check the tariff calculator!
All applicants are expected to have at least a ‘C’ in GCSEs Maths and English Language or equivalent. Non-UK applicants will need to have an English Language qualification at International Level B2 or higher, such as an IELTS of 6.0 or better (with no component below 5.5). Students with equivalent qualifications will also be accepted. If your application is successful, you will be invited to an interview where you will have the opportunity to talk about your work, influences and interests. Ideal applicants will have a keen interest in film, television, and visual effects. You are welcome to bring any relevant examples of work with you, if you have them.
HOW TO APPLY
You can apply for this course by submitting an application via the UCAS system. The UCAS codes for this course are as follows:-
UCAS Code: W614
Institution Code: F98
For information about applying in July and August, please see our Clearing page. Futureworks is currently unable to accept any applications from anyone who requires a Tier 4 Visa to study in the UK.
If you have any questions about applying for a degree course please call us on 0161 214 4602, email firstname.lastname@example.org or look at our Admissions FAQs.
Student Protection Plan
Futureworks maintains a Student Protection Plan which has been approved by the Office for Students. The plan sets out the actions Futureworks will take, in co-ordination with its validating partner, the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan), to ensure that students are protected in the event of a material change to Futureworks’ operations.
A material change may include the decision to close one or more courses, or a decision to cease operations altogether. A material change may, however, be triggered by decisions taken outside of Futureworks control, such as loss of designation/registered status with the Office for Students, or the decision by a validating partner to not renew the delivery one or more courses.
You can download a copy of the plan here.
CANCELLING YOUR APPLICATION
If you wish just to cancel your application to Futureworks, you can do this by logging into your UCAS track and cancelling Futureworks as a choice. You can only do this if we have not yet sent you an offer. If we have sent you an offer and you wish to cancel your application to us, you can reject the offer on your UCAS track. If you accept your offer and then decide you wish to withdraw your application to us, you will need to call the Admissions department on 0161 214 4602 and ask them to release you from your offer.
AWARD: Bachelor of Arts Honours Degree
DURATION: 3 Years (Full Time)
HE LEVEL 4 (YEAR 1)
- Introduction to Compositing (40 credits)
- Introduction to 3D Modelling (20 credits)
- Content Creation for VFX (40 credits)
- History of Visual Effects (20 credits)
HE LEVEL 5 (YEAR 2)
- Visual Effects Studio Project (40 credits)
- Character Creation & Motion Capture for VFX (40 credits)
- Motion Graphics & UI Development (20 credits)
- Contemporary Visual Effects (20 credits)
HE LEVEL 6 (YEAR 3)
- Professional Studio Project (40 credits)
- Professional Specialism (20 credits)
- Honours Project (60 credits)
WHAT ARE CREDITS?
As a guide, 20 credits typically represents around 52 hours of tutor contact time (e.g. lectures/workshops/feedback) and 148 hours of self-study time (usually over the course of a semester). These numbers may increase or decrease depending on the nature, length and level of the module, especially towards the end of the course.
Admissions requirements, course content and delivery can be subject to change to enable Futureworks to deliver a better quality of educational experience. Applicants are encouraged to check information on our relevant course pages from time to time, particularly before submitting any application for their academic year of study.
Students on degree courses at Futureworks are required to attend lessons according to the course timetable. Futureworks operates a Student Engagement Policy which has been developed as part of Futureworks’ commitment to providing a supportive learning environment which enables all students who have chosen to study with us to achieve their full potential. The full Engagement Policy can be downloaded here.
PAYMENT OF TUITION FEES
Students are expected to pay their tuition fees (whether via a student loan and/or direct payment) on-time and in accordance with their Finance Agreement. If you fail to make payments according to the agreed schedule you may be suspended from your course until any outstanding fees are paid.
Students are liable for 25% of the course fees when they enrol in Term 1 (and stay after the 2 week change of mind period). If students attend in Term 2 they are liable for 50% of the course fees, and 100% if they attend in Term 3. Students will have a 2 week period at the beginning of the course where they will not be liable for fees if they leave the University.
If a student needs to retake any modules part-time, there will be an additional tuition fee per module.
For it’s Higher Education courses, Futureworks operates a robust three-stage complaints procedure which incorporates both the University of Central Lancashire and the Office of the Independent Adjudicator. The Complaints Procedure is intended to provide an accessible, fair and straightforward system which ensures an effective, prompt and appropriate response. The full procedure can be downloaded here.
THE STUDENT CONTRACT
As a provider of Higher Education, our commitment to you is important and we therefore need regulations, policies and codes of conduct, which are designed to protect and maintain both academic quality and your rights and responsibilities as Futureworks students.
You need to be aware of their existence and their relevance to you and your studies. Alongside this, you may also have other separate arrangements with external organisations, such as the Student Loans Company, which you will need to ensure that you fully understand.
UCLan’s academic regulations ensure that all students are treated in a fair way – from the moment you are accepted on to a course, through to assessments and the qualification that you are awarded.
You can find out more about UCLan’s general policy documents, which together form the student contract, the basis of the contractual relationship between you, Futureworks and the University, here.
USE OF UNFAIR MEANS
‘Unfair means’ includes copying the work of others (plagiarism) and passing it off as your own, and other forms of cheating in assessments. The use of unfair means is taken very seriously by Futureworks, and if you are suspected of using unfair means, you could be subject to disciplinary action under the Futureworks disciplinary procedure which may jeopardise your status as a student.
YOUR RIGHT TO CANCEL
You have the right to cancel and withdraw within 14-days from the date your contract with Futureworks is entered into (the day the you accepted our offer of a place on the course). To cancel your application, complete this form and return it to: Admissions, Futureworks, Riverside, Manchester, M3 5FS.
Teaching & Assessment
We want to do everything we can to prepare you for working within the creative industries, and this is reflected in the way we teach and assess you. The programme is mostly coursework based, which means your tutors will be able to give you regular, constructive feedback. Presentation techniques will give you valuable experience of how to present your thoughts and ideas successfully and enthusiastically, so you are better at selling your ideas to prospective employers.
The written work is an important part of assessment and will improve your communication skills. A combination of lectures, tutorials, peer reviews, discussions and observations will ensure that you’re industry ready. External trips will present you with a wider range of topics and the opportunity to expand your portfolio, whilst guest speakers will help you to understand the world of games, how it works and how you can make your mark on it.
LOCATION OF DELIVERY
Your primary location of study will be at our Riverside Campus, which is located on New Bailey Street in Manchester. As part of your course, some of your lessons will take place at our Futureworks Studios facility located in MediaCityUK, a few miles from the city centre.
Futureworks recognises that the skills, competencies and contribution of its staff are vital to the delivery of high quality Higher Education. All programmes are managed by a dedicated Programme Leader and team of experienced tutors, and our excellent links with industry employers mean you’ll have access to exciting guest lectures and fantastic opportunities to gain experience on real-world projects.
Fees for the 2022/23 academic year
Fees are £9,250 per year.
As an approved provider of Higher Education, financial support is available for all Futureworks degree and diploma courses and as part of your application to study at Futureworks, you’ll need to think about how you’ll be funding your course. Depending on your circumstances, there’s a range of financial help and support available.
Fees for the 2023/24 academic year
Fees will be £9,250 per year. This may be subject to change as determined by government policy.
Funding for degree courses
Degree courses are eligible for funding via a loan from the Student Loans Company (SLC), and students can apply for a loan for each year of study. It is important that when you apply for student finance you list Futureworks Training Ltd as the institution you will be studying at so that delays in payment of your loans (and grants if applicable) are avoided.
For students to be eligible for SLC funding, they must be studying a designated course. To find out how much you are eligable you need to apply for Student Finance. Applying for Student Finance can be done here.
Our Admissions Team is here to help, and they can guide you through the process. If you have any questions about funding your degree programme, or about tuition fee loans and/or direct debits, please call us on 0161 214 4602.
Student Finance England: Guide for new full-time students
The Student Room: Video preview of what the zone on The Student Room has to offer
Applicants from Northern Ireland should visit this page for information about tuition fee loans and speak to our Admissions Team, as the maximum tuition fee loan amount is different to the rest of the UK. Applicants from the EU should visit this page for information about tuition fee loans.
We recognise that funding your course can be a complex matter, and we would recommend that you discuss your finance options with a member of our Admissions Team on 0161 214 4602 to discuss the options available to you. Alternatively you can email them here: email@example.com.