Bachelor of Art & Design

3D Animation & Visual Effects

  • Length 3 years full time
  • Indicative Fees ~ $9,000 / year for 2015 (incl. GST) NZD per year
    $25,130 / year for 2015 NZD per year (International)
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  • Qualification Degree
    NZQF Level 7 (420 Credits)
    1.2 EFTS per year

Course Overview

The Bachelor of Art and Design (3D Animation and Visual Effects) delivers a comprehensive technical skillset and essential project experience that prepares you for entry into global film, television, animation and game studios. Benefit from the experience of our award-winning faculty members who joined the school from Weta, Dreamworks, Disney and Universal Studios.

Infinite Career Possibilities

  • Graduates have gone on to work on blockbuster films including Avatar and The Hobbit
  • Student short films receive international recognition
  • Graduates are in demand for their experience working on major projects within a studio-like environment
  • Career paths include 3D modeller, compositor, VFX artist, animator, technical director and effects designer

Course Breakdown

Year 1

During the first year, you will learn foundation art skills and achieve proficiency in industry-standard technical tools and software this includes an introduction to modelling, animation, rigging and visual effects.

Year 2

The second year involves immersive studies in core subjects such as preproduction, scripting and dynamics. In the second term, pursue a chosen specialisation in visual effects and motion graphics, technical 3D studies or 3D Animation studies. Students retain a specialist focus for the remainder of their studies. However, all core subjects including tutorials, theory classes and art classes are taught collectively.

Year 3

In year three, you will be immersed in production as you work on group and individual projects. The final year also incorporates industry procedures and practice to prepare students for industry placement.

Graduates going places

Our graduates enter the industry as highly-skilled technicians, animators and digital artists. They go on to work in the world’s biggest film studios and have worked on blockbusters like Avatar, King Kong, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Dark Knight and Harry Potter.

Read their stories

Intake Calendar

Intake Date Course Duration Application Deadline & Notes
23rd February 2015 3 years full time Apply Now
20th July 2015 3 years full time Apply Now

Entry Requirements

General Admission

NCEA University Entrance or equivalent such as:

  • An appropriate qualification from an overseas secondary school or tertiary institution, deemed by Media Design School to be sufficient for admission into a bachelors programme.
  • CIE (University of Cambridge International Examination)
  • IB (International Baccalaureate)

English Language (international applicants): Academic IELTS 6.0 (minimum), or equivalent


  • 24 NCEA Credits, Level 3 in Technology, Art and Design (minimum)

If you are enrolled at a New Zealand secondary school and have not yet completed your NCEA (CIE or equivalent) qualification you can still apply now for admission. When your NCEA results are available in January, we will check them and contact you. For more detailed information about the ‘approved subject list’ and specific literacy credits we suggest you check the NZQA website

Special Admission (age over 20)

Applicants who do not meet requirements for general admission, are age 20 or more, and have relevant experience and skills may apply for special admission, which must be supported by a professional portfolio or documented industry experience.

Discretionary Admission (under age 20)

Applicants who do not meet requirements for general admission, and are at least 16 and under age 20, may apply for discretionary admission. Discretionary admission applicants should have reached a significant level of achievement in year 12, or have successfully completed a relevant foundation programme or tertiary qualification.

Portfolio Requirements

Application Process

Complete an online application and our staff will be in touch within a few days to assist you through the process. We will require some documentation and a portfolio to support your application and you may be required to complete an interview. More information can be found on the enrolment page.

Get in touch with the team

Our admissions department are here to help with any questions you have. Please let us know if you can’t find the information you are looking for.

phone +64 9 3030 402 mail View Further Contact Details