A lot has happened in the world of animation programs over the last few weeks, so we’re eager to dive right in and report the latest developments. First, the application deadline for Indiana University’s brand new Media Honors Program has finally arrived. If you missed it, mark your calendar for next year. Next, the University of Edinburgh has introduced a new Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Animation that welcomes students from abroad. And finally, Vancouver Film School (VFS) is celebrating the one-year anniversary of a unique collaborative program that leads to both a Diploma and BA in Film. Read on.
Indiana University Bloomington – Bloomington, Indiana
Indiana University Bloomington (IU Bloomington) is set to launch a brand new honors program in 2018. Just sixteen students will be selected to “earn a general honors notation, take advanced classes, travel globally and work with a faculty mentor,” says the school. This very first class of Media Scholars will be enrolling with the intent to earn a Bachelor of Arts in Media (BA Media) or a Bachelor of Science in Game Design (BS Game Design). Students in this exclusive media program will take honors courses in The Media School, engage with media professionals, and receive subsidies for international travel courses.
Media Scholars will also “have the chance to travel to New York while visiting media organizations and networking with alumni.” Students participating in professional summer internships will have the opportunity to travel to New York, Los Angeles or London.
Subject areas for the BS in Game Design include Game Art, Game Sound, Game Programming, Game Design, and Game Management, Advertising and Public Relations. Study abroad courses such as Game Development: Programming and Practice, Rhetoric of Gaming, and Game Development Lab are on the menu as well as access to Human Computer Interaction (HCI) courses in the School of Informatics and Computing. Options include Interaction Design and Multimedia Arts and Technology.
BA Media students may choose from seven concentrations including Interactive and Digital Media, Cinema and Media Arts — Studies and Production, Media Advertising, Media Management, Industry, and Policy, Media Science, Media Technologies and Cultures, and Sports Media. Sample courses include Program Graphics and Animation, Visual Storytelling, Graphic Design, Game Art and Sound, Game Production, Scriptwriting, and Information Infrastructure.
To become a Media Scholar, you must apply to IU by November 1, 2017 as a Media or Game Design major. Students whose applications meet the minimum criteria will be invited to apply to the program using IU’s Selective Scholarship Application.
Founded in 1820, Indiana University Bloomington is the flagship campus of IU's eight campuses. The school offers more than 550 academic programs and over 200 undergraduate majors, and it houses 200+ research centers and institutes. Of the systems nearly 115,000 students, close to 50,000 are enrolled at the Bloomington campus and over 2,600 study overseas each year. Students come from all 50 states and 150 countries.
IU Bloomington is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and is a member of the North Central Association (NCA).
University of Edinburgh – Edinburgh, Scotland, UK
University of Edinburgh has introduced a new BA in Animation that “differs radically from most courses,” in that the program teaches “the full spectrum of production methods,” says the school. Offered through the Edinburgh College of Art (ECA), the program covers 2D and 3D techniques, including puppet-based stop-frame, using both cameras, and CGI. Students in the program will work individually or in a team to make films, documentaries, and installations.
Sample courses for the full-time, four-year program include Design Studio – Animation, Design Collaboration – Animation, Design Research – Animation, Design & Screen Cultures, Design in Action, Design and Material Culture, Animation – Issues of Representation, Professional Design Practice and Design Studio.
Career opportunities for graduates are plentiful and may include working at Laika, Aardman, Ko-Lik Films, Cartoon Saloon, Mackinnon & Saunders, Rock Star North, Channel 4, BBC 4, CBBC, CBeebies, and more.
Edinburgh College of Art is a “leading international art college” within the University of Edinburgh. The school is home to 2,000 undergraduate students enrolled in 22 degree programs across five schools. ECA is Accredited as a Skillset Screen & Media Academy and is one of a select group of institutions recognized by Creative Skillset as providing the highest standard of vocational education, training and skills development for film and television.
Vancouver Film School – Vancouver, BC, Canada
Vancouver Film School’s (VFS) groundbreaking Diploma-to-Degree partnership with Wilfrid Laurier University has begun second year in existence. The cross-institutional partnership enables students from both institutions to receive both a Diploma in Applied Film Skills and a Bachelor of Arts Honors in Film Studies within four years by taking courses at both institutions. The first of its kind in Ontario, the VFS-Laurier Pathway prepares graduates to work in numerous industries and all areas of film from directing to production to VFX.
According to Laurier Film Studies Professor and Program Coordinator Philippa Gates, “the technical skills learned in film production—from videography and editing to sound design and post-production—are valuable for many professional fields today. Laurier’s Film Studies Honors program foregrounds the theoretical, historical, and stylistic analysis of film while VFS’s programs provide the applied skills and hands-on experience to put that theory into practice.
Sample courses for the program include Cinematography, Script Development, Directing, Producing, Post-Production, Script Collaboration, and Global Cinema.
The VFS-Laurier Pathway isn’t the first groundbreaking program VFS has introduced. The school has introduced “first in the world” production programs” in Classical Animation, 3D Animation, New Media, Sound Design, and Camera-Based Acting. In addition, the school now offers 13 one-year Diploma programs in Film Production, 3D Animation and Visual Effects, Classical Animation, Animation and Concept Arts, Game Design, Programming for Games, Web & Mobile, Sound Design, Foundational Visual Art and Design, Writing for Film and TV, Makeup for Film and TV, Acting for Film and TV, and a four-month Acting Essentials course.
Founded in 1987, Vancouver Film School opened with just 12 students as the world’s first full-time immersion film program dedicated to comprehensive skill set development. The school serves more than 1,000 students across eight campuses in Vancouver, BC. VFS is accredited by the B.C. Private Training Institutions Branch (PTIB) and British Columbia Education Quality Assurance (EQA). The school also has partnerships with Adobe, Autodesk, Final Draft, HP, and Pixologic, to name a few.