Level 3 Extended Diploma in Games, Animation and VFX Skills (NextGen)

This unique course, supported by NextGen Skills Academy, is designed by some of the world's leading employers such as Ubisoft, Sony, Framestore, Blue Zoo, Microsoft, MPC and Sega, to ensure you have the necessary skills to succeed in the industry.

As the only college in the Northwest to offer this unique and exciting qualification, you will develop technical, artistic and programming skills that are crucial to you successfully launching your career.

You will master 3D modelling and animation using Autodesk Maya, concept your ideas in Adobe Photoshop, build unique games in Unreal Engine 4 and produce an extensive show reel portfolio.

When will I start the course and how long will it take?

The course will start in September and will take two years to complete.

What will I study?

Throughout this exciting course, you will:

  • Develop technical skills in animation, 3D modelling and the creation of visual effects
  • Explore production pipelines, process management and the importance of commercial feasibility
  • Develop crucial project management skills and techniques by gaining practical experience of using Agile and Scrum
  • Research an emerging technology or trend and present your findings
  • Gain experience of working to real industry briefs, with local and regional employers

NextGen Skills Academy will also provide an exciting opportunity for you to take advantage of industry masterclasses with employers across games, animation and VFX including Blue Zoo, Double Negative, Framestore, Microsoft, MPC, Sony Interactive Entertainment Europe, Ubisoft and Centroid 3D.

How is it assessed?

You will create work for a range of practical assignments and projects that will be assessed internally and/or externally. Tutors will provide ongoing feedback designed to help you improve across a steady learning curve. Industry professionals will set briefs, deliver masterclasses and offer feedback on student portfolio's.

Do I need any previous qualifications to start this course?

You should have four GCSEs at grade 4 (equivalent to grade C) or above, including English and/or maths, and preferably an art and design based subject.

Achieving a good standard of English and maths is a key requirement for many jobs, as well as for courses you may wish to progress on to. If you achieve below a grade 4 in your English and/or maths GCSEs at school, you will study it alongside your chosen course when you join us.

If you already have a grade 4 or above in English and/or maths but wish to achieve a higher grade, we can also support you to do this.

What are the course fees?

If you are a school leaver, aged 16-18, (under the age of 19 on or before 31st August 2020), you do not pay tuition fees or examination and registration fees and may be eligible for additional support depending on your financial situation. For more information, please visit our dedicated Financial Support page.

What can I go on to do once I have completed this course?

The Northwest is home to a growing digital arts industry and key production studios for animation, games production and cinema visual effects, which means big employers are always looking for fresh talent!

On successful completion of this course, you could find employment in games design, games development, animation or 3D design.

Previous students have progressed to University Centre St Helens to study BA (Hons) Game Art, validated by The University of Chester or FdSc Media Production, approved by the University of Central Lancashire. Alternatively, you may decide to choose a degree such as animation, creative media, games design or 3D design at another university.

Visit the NextGen Skills Academy website for more information.

Ref: Rob Hinde

Why study Games, Animation and VFX with us?

Industry Experts

Our lecturers have industry experience, including working on AAA game titles.

Employer Links

We have strong employer links with the games industry in the Northwest.

Latest Industry Software

You will use the latest industry standard software such as MudBox, Unreal Engine and Autodesk. 

Excellent Progression

Excellent progression from the level 3 course to degree level study at University Centre St Helens.

Live Briefs and Projects

Work on live briefs and projects with professional clients in the industry. 

Diverse Range of Skills

Develop a wide range of skills from digital painting and 3D modelling to character design.