Course details

Study options

Full-time: 3 years

UK/EU fee

£9,250 per year* (2020/21)

International fee

£14,045 per year (2020/21)

UCAS points

120 (September 2020 entry)

UCAS code

I710

Course level

Undergraduate

Qualification

BA (Hons)

Start date

September

Location

Derby Campus

Course description

Computer games represents one of the world’s largest and fastest growing entertainment industries, where specialists with the right mix of technical skills and artistic flair are in high demand. This cutting-edge course gives you vital insights into latest industry practice and sets you up for a dynamic career.

If you have the potential and ambition to study with us, but feel you’re not quite ready to join the BA (Hons) Computer Games Modelling and Animation right now, why not consider taking this course with our Year Zero preparatory programme?

93%Overall satisfaction - BA (Hons) Computer Games Modelling and Animation**National Student Survey 2018

See some of our student's work at the Computer Games Expo 2019

The Computer Games Expo 2019

In your final year, you'll work with students on our BSc (Hons) Computer Games Programming degree to create a game. Your game will then be featured in the university's Games Expo. See the video below for what to expect!

Final year students on BA Computer Games Modelling and Animation & BSc Computer Games Programming exhibiting at Games Expo 2019

What you will study

Year 1Year 1Year 2Year 2Optional Placement YearOptional Placement YearYear 3Year 3

Code: 4CC500

Introduction to 3D Modelling

This module aims to provide the student with a basic introduction to 3D by acquiring the principal skills and knowledge required to successfully create 3D objects. The module will look at various modelling, basic material, and rendering techniques used within the digital entertainment industry as a whole and provide the student with the necessary skills to demonstrate this. This module is not games focused specifically although ‘games specific’ techniques will be covered.

The students will also look at how these skills fit in with a creative production process. In essence, how they get an idea from their mind onto a computer screen in 3D.

More information
20 Credits
core
Coursework

Code: 4CC501

Computer Games Modelling

This module builds on knowledge of 3D modelling gained through ‘Introduction to 3D Modelling’ by providing the student with the principal skills and knowledge required to successfully create 3D artistic assets in a game environment. The module will specifically address the need to work within the limits laid out by hardware and will be assessed through a portfolio of a game based art projects. The module consists of themes based on game asset production. An important aspect of the project work of this module is to encourage the student to analyse, understand and respond to hardware limitations with an awareness of developing ways of working, as a design process, and to generate successful visual outcomes focusing on audience and purpose.
20 Credits
optional
Coursework

Code: 4CC504

Concept Development for Digital Application

The ability to communicate a creative vision for a game is fundamental to the role of a 3D practitioner. This module provides the student with the principal skills needed to develop concepts that can be developed digitally to advance 3D design. The student will apply traditional skills and methodologies to develop digitally created assets, so that they may better understand the creative link between traditional skills and the benefits of digital non-destructive workflows.
20 Credits
optional
Coursework

Code: 4CC506

Game Studies

The module aims to provide the student with an understanding of the videogame industry in relation to culture and society through design and development. Students will examine the history of the industry and the development of key genres and titles, as well as reviewing key design principles which define the experience of play.
20 Credits
optional
Coursework

Code: 4CC507

Game Texture Development

This module provides the student with the fundamental skills and techniques of game texture creation. It explores key principles of material definition using 2D texture mapping and 3D shader technology. Students will learn to develop materials with realistic surface properties using a range of real-time techniques. They will also get the opportunity to design and produce non-realistic textures which will engage traditional drawing and rendering skills by adapting them for the digital domain.
20 Credits
optional
Coursework

Code: 4CC508

Introduction to 3D Animation

This module aims to provide the student with a basic introduction to 3D animation by acquiring the principal skills and knowledge required to successfully animate 3D objects using specialist tools. The module will focus on traditional animation principles and demonstrate how these relate, and can be applied to 3D animation software. This module is not games focused but rather looks at the basics of animation in relation to the 3D artist. The students will also look at how these skills fit in with a creative production process. In essence, how they create motion using digital technology.
20 Credits
optional
Coursework

Code: 5CC500

Real Time Environment Development

Environment creation in games is the platform upon which the mechanics of playing space can exist. These virtual playgrounds have become increasingly advanced almost to the quality of production rendering. Students need to understand how to create effective environments which fulfil a dual role of functioning as a successful playable space but also a visually authentic presentation to the player. This module introduces students to real-time design and rendering techniques used by the Games industry in the processes of environment development. Students will explore shading and lighting techniques for real-time 3D alongside level design principles and logic based methodologies for interactivity.
20 Credits
core
Coursework

Code: 5CC501

Applied Game Art Production

This module will build on personal development planning through teamwork, presentation, and planning for 'real world' scenarios. The module introduces fundamental game development issues through team work centred project based learning. The students will implement theory and knowledge to produce artistic assets and demonstrate their ability to implement designs within the conditions of a team environment, with consideration for the limits of industry standard game development hardware. Students will be encouraged to reflect on their development as games artists through their experience using journals and report writing.
20 Credits
core
Coursework

Code: 5CC502

Specialist 3D Project

This module provides the student with the research skills for developing specialist knowledge in the area of 3D. Based on skills already acquired at this stage in the programme students are encouraged to engage in individual research activities to support their growing interest in a particular aspect of games development of their choosing. The student will apply this research to the development of an artefact that will embody new found skills and understanding in their chosen specialism.
20 Credits
core
Coursework

Code: 5CC504

3D Animation for Games

This module aims to build upon the knowledge gained in introduction to 3D Animation by developing a deeper understanding of animation principles in 3D. The module will look at animation fundamentals that can be applied to the context of real time 3D game applications. Game specific animation systems will be explored and how these affect the traditional animation pipeline. Students will be encouraged to develop animations that respond to realistic requirements and constraints, in order to develop work that is relevant to game production.
20 Credits
core
Coursework

Code: 5CC505

3D Digital Sculpture

This module focuses on the use of digital sculpture tools in the game development process. Students will experience how traditional techniques can be employed and enhanced; using digital tool sets to produce high definition assets for use in the games art pipeline. This module will address how these assets can be used to generate data to be applied to game ready models for integration into game pipelines.
20 Credits
core
Practical

Code: 5CC506

3D Rigging Systems

This module will focus on the development of 3D rigged skeletal systems for animation. Students will develop complex rigs for different asset types, which exploit a range of tools and methodologies based on animation principles. This module will address how these rigs should be designed with respect to real time workflows, limitations, and game based scenarios.
20 Credits
core
Coursework

Code: 5CC886

Applied Professional Practice

This module provides a framework for the development of “lifelong learning” skills appropriate to all areas of professional practice; including objective setting, planning, negotiating, implementing, demonstrating and reflecting. The emphasis in this module is on the analysis and evaluation of the work completed within the organisation. This module also gives students an opportunity to relate their academic knowledge to the work environment.
40 Credits
core
Coursework

Code: 5CC887

Contemporary Issues in Professional Practice

Students need to be aware of the commercial realities and external factors that influence the success of an organisation. This module provides opportunities for students to acquire an understanding of contemporary issues that may impact on industrial and professional practices relevant to a career within their chosen discipline. During this period of work experience, students can gain a deeper appreciation of the responsibilities arising from both corporate and individual responses to such issues, thus enabling them to relate to the wider world when exploring a personal direction for potential career development.
20 Credits
core
Coursework

Code: 6CC501

Advanced 3D Graphics

This module will look at the processes employed in developing high end pre-rendered computer graphics and how these could be adapted or simulated in the context of real time development. The module encourages the student to explore and experiment with advanced non game specific toolsets and assess the feasibility of application to a real-time visual design. This module will assess the students’ ability to critically analyse, and evaluate the processes investigated. This module will encourage the student to investigate alternative pathways as part of their professional development, as it focuses on industrial processes specific to non real-time based industry.
20 Credits
core
Coursework

Code: 6CC527

Professional Portfolio Development

This module enables students to have a greater understanding of the professional practices involved in portfolio development and self-promotion through techniques applicable to the world of work in their chosen specialism. The module provides a broad understanding of the current employment landscape, developments, and trends within the games industry. The module will allow the student to explore pro-active leaving strategies which will help prepare them for the workplace through the development of a professional portfolio, which reflects their skills and aspirations.
20 Credits
core
Coursework

Code: 6CC528

Game Development

Implementing a video game typically requires the developer to combine images, sound, level or environment definitions, motion specifications, and simulated two-dimensional or three-dimensional objects into a seamless, interactive whole driven by software. This module explores the issues related to the game development process, including current research and emerging developments in the field.
20 Credits
core
Coursework

Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.

University of Derby student drinking coffee

How you will learn

You will study three modules per semester, each delivered through a mixture of lectures, tutorials and practical sessions where you will learn to work with Maya, Photoshop, ZBrush and Unreal® Engine 4. Your year on work placement will take place between stages two and three of your studies.

How you will be assessed

Assessment is 100% coursework through a mixture of group and individual assignments. In the final year, 25% of your assessment will be for a personal project.

a student at the games expo
a student working on computer
Red Dead Redemption 2 graphic

Tom's helping to perfect landmark game

Read how Tom ended up working at Rockstar Games after graduating, and how his degree helped him get there.

Read Tom's storyRead Tom's story

Who will teach you

Programme leader

Roisin Hunt

Entry requirements

September 2020 typical entry requirements

RequirementWhat we're looking for
UCAS points120 (up to 16 from AS-levels)
Specific requirements at A-level

No specific subject requirements

Specific requirements at GCSEGCSE Maths and English Grade C/Grade 4 (or above) or equivalent qualification
IELTS6.0 (with 5.5 in each skills area)
Interview / AuditionN/A
Portfolio

Yes

 Alternative entry qualifications:

We usually consider an A-level in General Studies as a supplementary qualification. A good application/performance will be taken into account if you do not meet the criteria/offer conditions.

Our entry requirements for this course should be read together with the University's general entry requirements, which details subjects we accept, alternative qualifications and what we're looking for at Derby.

Fees and funding

2020/21 Fees

 Full-timePart-time
UK/EU

£9,250 per year*

N/A

International

£14,045 per year

N/A

* The fees stated above are for the 2019/20 academic year; fees for 2020/21 have not yet been confirmed by the UK government. We will update this information as soon as it is available.

Further information about our fees and support you may be entitled to.

Additional costs and optional extras

How to apply

UK/EU students

Full-time students applying to start in September should apply for this course through UCAS or you can apply directly to the University for an undergraduate course if you’re not applying to any other UK university in the same year.

Apply through UCASApply directly to the University

Guidance for EU students post-Brexit

International students

Full-time students applying to start in September should apply for this course through UCAS or you can apply directly to the University for an undergraduate course if you’re not applying to any other UK university in the same year.

Apply through UCASApply directly to the University

Guidance for international applicants applying for an undergraduate degree

Careers

The computer games industry needs specialists with a powerful combination of skills so this degree makes you highly employable.

Having completed the programme, you will be capable of creating and animating 3D art in a real-time environment using the very latest techniques. You will also be able to demonstrate your flair and originality to prospective employers.

In addition, you will discover that the skills you have developed can be transferred to a range of different industries such as film and visualisation.

Cars racing in a forest from Forza Horizon 4

Daniel's dream job at Xbox

Find out how we steered our Computer Games Modelling and Animation graduate Daniel Fern towards a career with Microsoft Xbox.

Read Daniel's storyRead Daniel's story

Contact us

If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.

Contact us Contact us

† Additional information about your studies

4 years with a placement year

Download programme specification

Teaching hours

Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.

Additional costs and optional extras

We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, excellent facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.

Included in your fees

Mandatory costs not included in your fees

Optional costs not included in your fees

Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.

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