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Animation. Graphic Design. Game Art.

2017 Top 100 International Animation Schools

Written by Tom FronczakJanuary 8, 2017
Did You Know.....Full Sail University offers online degree programs in computer animation, game art, and game design? Learn more about Full Sail University's online programs.
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Norwegian Schools:

Idefagskolen AS. Nøtterøy, Norway.

This school has five different programs to choose from: Media Design, 3D Design, 3D Animation, Interior Design, and Retail Designer. The 3D Design and 3D Animation paths are both one year long spread over two semesters that each cost about 54,500 Krone. Check out their student galleries to see all of the impressive projects that have come out of their programs!

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Noroff Instituttet. Kristiansand, Norway.

Noroff's University College has a three year Bachelor program for game design and one for animation as well. Students who want more specific training over a shorter period can choose from 3D Film Production and 3D Game Design, which are both two year programs, or a one year 3D Design and Animation course. All of these choices are available online!

Spanish Schools:

9Zeros. Barcelona, Spain.

9Zeros continues to grow! They still have a three year Diploma in Animation and these three Masters programs: Master in CGAnimation, Master in CG Animation, Master in Animation and Stop-Motion, and Master in Animation and 2D Realization. They've also added a 3D Animation Initiation Course, a Stop-Motion Animation Initiation Course, and an Initiation Course to 2D Animation.

CICE, La Escuela Profesional de Nuevas. Madrid, Spain.

Whereas most schools have programs that cover a long list of software, this school instead has programs that each focus heavily on one main piece of software. They have courses, degrees, and Master's programs for the following software: Autodesk 3ds Max, Autodesk Maya, Unity, ZBrush, and FX Houdini. Most courses span hundreds of hours!

Escola Superior de Cinema. Barcelona, Spain.

Also known as ESCAC, this school has an Animation & Visual Effects Master's program that spans 800 hours full-time from September to June and is only open to twelve to eighteen students each year! This program costs £10,100 and the school's alumni have worked on several movies and television shows.

British Schools:

Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design. Dundee, Scotland.

Also known as DJCAD, this school has a BDes (Hons) Animation course that's three years full-time and costs £1,820 per year for Scottish and EU students, £9,250 per year for students from the rest of UK, and £14,950 per year for international students. They also have a one year full-time MSc Animation & VFX course that costs £5,950 per year for Scottish, UK, and EU students, and £14,950 per year for international students.

Escape Studios, Pearson College London. London, United Kingdom.

Want to start your career as soon as possible, and not have to wait through years of studying to reach your goals? This school has you covered! They have five week courses for Houdini, and short courses for the following: Storyboarding (eight weeks), Animation (twelve weeks), Video Games Art Production (twelve weeks), Video Games Art and Effects Production (eighteen weeks), 2D VFX courses that span from four weeks to twenty weeks, and 3D VFX courses that span four weeks to thirty weeks. Still not fast enough? Try one of their one day taster courses for just £25!

Ravensbourne. London, United Kingdom.

The School of Media at Ravensbourne offers a three year BA (Hons) Animation program that has no up-front fees! Tuition is paid by a government loan and loan repayments only have to be made once you have left the university and are earning over £21,000 a year! As for what the fees actually are, students should currently expect to be charged about £9,000 per year.

SAE Institute London. Other campuses in United Kingdom: SAE Liverpool, SAE Oxford, and SAE Glasgow in Scotland.

Sometimes called SAE Institute UK, SAE London two BA/BSc (Hons) programs. The first is Game Art & Animation, which is a two year full-time degree that prepares students for careers as Character Designers, 3D Modelers, Environment Builders, and Lead Artists. The second is Visual Effects & Animation, which is also two years full-time and prepares students to work on VFX in the movie industry. They also have a BSc (Hons) Games Programming degree that's two years full-time for students who want to program video games.

Southampton Solent University. Southampton, United Kingdom.

Solent has over 49,000 students worldwide! Want an animation career? This school has two different three year programs to choose from: BA (Hons) Animation and BA (Hons) Digital Animation. Each of these programs is £9,250 per year for UK and EU students and £11,000 per year for international students. Game designers have three different three year programs to choose from: BSc (Hons) Computer Games (Software Development), BSc (Hons) Computer Games (Indie), and BA (Hons) Computer Games (Art).

University of Hertfordshire. Hertfordshire, United Kingdom.

Aspiring animators and game designers should check out these three undergraduate programs: 2D Animation and Character for Digital Media (BA Hons), 3D Computer Animation and Modelling (BA Hons), and 3D Games Art & Design Study Abroad (BA Hons). Each of those programs are three years full-time, or four years if you choose to study abroad!

University of Portsmouth. Portsmouth, England.

This school has three game design programs and four animation programs. BA (Hons) Animation is perhaps their most popular course, and it runs three years full-time with a one year placement option that helps artists launch their careers! The 2017/2018 tuition fees for this program are £9,250 for domestic students and £13,300 for international students. While enrolled, students will enjoy being able to use the school's motion capture studio and other impressive facilities!

University of West England. Bristol, United Kingdom.

UWE Bristol has two animation programs: a BA (Hons) undergraduate degree (three years full-time at £9,250 a year for domestic students and £11,750 a year for international students), and a MA/Postgraduate Diploma/Postgraduate Certificate that’s fifteen months full-time. UWE also has a BSc (Hons) Games Technology degree that's three years full-time and £9,250 a year for domestic students and £12,250 for international students.

South African Schools:

SAE Institute South Africa. Cape Town, South Africa.

Also known as SAE Cape Town, this school has a Bachelor of Arts in Motion Design and Animation (three years full-time, specializes in character design, character animation, environment art, concept art, and storyboard art) and a Higher Certificate in Animation and Visual Effects (one year full-time, specializes in 3D animation, 3D rigging, 3D modelling, storyboarding, and graphic illustrations).

University of the Witwatersrand. Johannesburg, South Africa.

The Wits School of Arts at the University of the Witwatersrand has several undergraduate and postgraduate programs that will interest aspiring animators and game designers. Their MA in Digital Animation requires students to have taken some of the school’s other programs prior to enrolling. They teach advanced Maya features in the first semester, and in the second semester students get to team up to make an animated short film!

Schools in Other Regions:

Anomalia. Litomyšl, Czech Republic.

You've probably seen some of this school's student animations go viral on the Web in the past year or two! Whereas most schools on this list have fought to follow in their footsteps, Anomalia has already expanded onto the next big thing: animating in VR! They currently offer ten day £726 Animation Labs for Attitude & Style (2D/3D), Details & Quality (3D), and Animating in VR. They also have an Animation Story Lab (Mythology, Story, and Storyboard) and an Animation Art Lab (Characters, Concept Art, and Development) that are both £605 for ten days of training. Lastly, they offer a ten day course in Character Sculpting in ZBrush that's £826. Cheap, fast, and awesome! Just be warned: this is not a school for beginners!

Ballyfermot College of Further Education. Dublin, Ireland.

The Irish School of Animation at Ballyfermot College has three animation programs: Animation Drawing Studies (one year), Higher National Diploma in Classical and Computer Animation (two years), and BA (Hons) Visual Media in Animation / Game Design (two years).

Beijing Film Academy. Beijing, China.

The Animation School of Beijing Film Academy (BFA) began in 2000, and in 2013 they launched the Beijing Film Academy's International Program as premiere film program taught in English to teach students three or four year Majors in Directing, Cinematography, and Visual Effects. Enrollment for this school can sometimes be fiercely limited, so apply as soon as possible!

Cadritech Computacao Grafica. São Paulo, Brazil.

Founded back in 1995, Cadritech doesn't offer comprehensive degrees spanning large curriculum areas. Instead, this school lets students focus entirely on a single piece of software so they can become a master at it. Their training courses cover the following software: 3ds Max, Maya, After Effects, Premiere Pro + Encore, AutoCAD, Rhino 3D, Illustrator, Revit Architecture, Inventor, Revit Map, Sketchup, Photoshop, V-Ray, and ZBrush.

Haute École Albert Jacquard. Namur, Belgium.

Often called simply HEAJ, this school has 180 credit Bachelor programs in 2D Animation & Digital Illustration, 3D Section, Computer Graphics, Video Games, and a 60 credit Honors program for Video Games.


Image Campus. Buenos Aires, Argentina.

This school offers great short-term and long-term options! Students can either take short courses based on individual software or instead take traditional degrees that last for a year or longer. They have three animation degrees that are each three years long: Higher Education in Integral Cartoons, Higher Education in Art and Animation for Video Games, and Superior Technique in Production of 3D Design and Animation for Cinema. They also have a three year Higher Education in Games Development program for those who want to program games!

Kaywon School of Art and Design. Euiwang-shi, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea.

This South Korean school has four areas of study: Game Media (for students who want to program games), Digital Media Design (for students who want to be visual web/mobile designers), Moving Image Design (for students who want to work in video production, video editing, and VFX), and Anime (for students who want to work in 2D or 3D animation careers).

Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design. Budapest, Hungary.

Founded way back in 1870, the Hungarian University of Arts and Design changed its name to its current one in 2006, and its students often call it MOME. The MOME Animation Department offers many BA and MA educational programs and is even involved with several incubator programs! They also organize the KISKAKAS Animation Film Festival and several film premieres and exhibitions.

Nanyang Polytechnic. Singapore.

Nanyang Polytechnic has several art degrees: Digital Visual Effects, Interaction Design, Digital Game Art & Design, Motion Graphics & Broadcast Design, Animation, Game Development & Technology. Students in their final year at the School of Interactive & Digital Media can take advantage of their Internship Program!

Nayzak Animation School. Cairo, Egypt.

This school has changed its diplomas from last year a bit! They offer Concept Art Diploma, Motion Graphics Diploma, 2D Character Animation Diploma, 3D Character Animation, 3D Environment Creation Diploma, and 3D Character Creation Diploma.


Odd School. Lisboa, Portugal.

Odd Digital Entertainment School offers foundation courses for the following software and training: 3ds Max, After Effects, Cinema 4D, Drawing, Sculpting, Animation, Maya, Photoshop, Business Pitches, Rigging, Storyboards, Toonboom Studio & Animation, V-Ray, and ZBrush. They also have three full programs: 3D Modeling & Texturing (€8,640), 2D Animation (€8640), and Concept Art (€17,280).

Playground Squad. Falun, Sweden.

This is the school who trained the group of artists that created the famous game, Angry Birds! These days they offer three course paths: Artist, Designer, or Programmer. Each path is two years of studies followed by six months of internship. Be warned though: this school is highly sought after but only accepts 40 artists, designers, and programmers each year!

SAE Institute Belgrade. Belgrade, Serbia.

SAE Belgrade has an eight week training course in Adobe After Effects that has two classes a week. They also have a two month Games Development program that costs €420 total and teaches students how to use Unity 3D. Want more? They have a BA/BSc (Hons) Animation program for Visual Effects and Game Art where in three years students can learn Adobe and Autodesk software, as well as Unreal Engine 4.

SAE Institute Dubai. Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Similar campuses in the Middle East: SAE Jeddah in Saudi Arabia and SAE Amman in Jordan.

SAE Dubai offers a two year Bachelor of Games Development that covers Unreal Engine 4, Unity 3D, 3D Studio Max, and Maya. Students get to work with Oculus Rift, Android, and iOS devices while programming in C++, Javascript, and C#. They also have a two year Bachelor of Animation that teaches several Autodesk and Adobe programs. Tuition for both is about 132,000 AED, plus 3,000 AED for registration, 2,000 AED for equipment, and 9,800 AED for a laptop and software.

SAE Institute Jakarta. Jakarta, Indonesia.

SAE Jakarta has a one year full-time Bachelor VFX Animation program and also a one year Animation Bachelor (that can be taken in sixteen to twenty months as an Australia Pathway Program). They also offer a 3D Animation Short Course and a three year full-time Diploma in 3D Animation & VFX.

SAE Institute Vienna. Vienna, Austria.

SAE Vienna is often called SAE Institute Wien, and it has five different paths for artists interested in game design and animation: BA/BSc (Hons) Game Art Animation (42 months), Game Art & 3D Animation Diploma (two years), MA/MSc Professional Practice (Creative Industries) (one year full-time, online classes), BSc (Hons) Games Programming (42 months), and Games Programming Diploma (two years).

SAE Institute Zürich. Zürich, Switzerland.

SAE Zürich has a 42 month BA/BSc (Hons) Game Art Animation program and a two year Game Art & 3D Animation Diploma; both are twenty to twenty five hours a week. They also offer a 3D Production program that's four months (every Saturday for five hours) of training and one month of working on a project. Lastly, they have a one year full-time online class for MA/MSc Professional Practice (Creative Media Industries).

TRUEMAX Academy School of CGI & Animation. Copenhagen, Denmark.

Truemax offers three main courses. The first is a six month 3D Fundamentals online course that costs 20.200 DKK and teaches the basics of 3D modelling, lighting, texturing, unwrapping, rendering, and animation. They do have discount options for some courses though! They also have a twelve week Classic Drawing course that costs 24.000 DKK and covers the basics of drawing, figure drawing, perspective, and anatomy. Lastly, Truemax has a twelve week Modelling for Games course that teaches the basics of 3D character design.

Universidad Veritas. San José, Costa Rica.

They offer a Technician in 2D Animation program that's five semesters, and their more ambitious program is the License in Digital Animation. That one is eleven quarters and comes with nine different animation classes as well as a multitude of classes in drawing, design, storyboards, and even marketing! In the final quarter students are tasked with creating their own short film!