Module code: DMA2010

Module Overview

This module is an intensive introduction to an industry-standard 3D modelling and animation package. Students begin with a solid foundation in low-polygon modelling, learning how to create models with good surface topology, before smoothing them in a controlled fashion with subdivision surfaces. Students are also introduced to NURBS, an alternative approach to creating smooth models, that has its own strengths and toolset. From there, students learn how to unwrap their models’ UVs, apply texture maps, set up lights and cameras. and render their scenes. At this stage there is a formative assessment, where students produce a textured 3D model suitable for the module’s animation assignment.

The remainder of the module is concerned with animation, from moving and deforming objects in a scene, to rigging a character with a full skeleton and associated IK chains. Finally, we have a look at implementing special effects. The animation assignment involves a good deal of work by the students, as they make use of everything they have learned. The end result is an impressive themed scene, rendered from multiple different viewpoints and put together in one animated production.

Module provider

Music and Media

Module Leader

O'DELL Matthew (Music & Med)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 5

JACs code: W615

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Workshop Hours: 18

Independent Learning Hours: 117

Lecture Hours: 10

Tutorial Hours: 5

Module Availability

Semester 1

Module content

Indicative content includes:

  • Polygon Modelling

  • Nurbs Modelling

  • Mapping UVs

  • Sculpting

  • Keyframe Animation

  • Graph Editing

  • Path Animation

  • Lights and Cameras

  • Fluids and Particles

  • Rendering

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate their understanding of production techniques, compositional skills, and how these are used in digital media arts industries.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • Coursework - Creative Project (100%), the portfolio consists of a creative project and reflective commentary responding to a brief set by the module convenor

Formative assessment and feedback

  • Coursework-in-progress: the portfolio consists of a modelling project in response to a brief set by the module convenor, accompanied by a reflective report

  • The module includes weekly exercises covering the production skills required for each of the briefs.

  • Continuous formative assessment is given through timetabled group critiques and individual tutorials. Work-in-progress presented will be given direct feedback regarding its quality and standard at these times.

  • During the 2 seminar sessions held the week prior to submission of assessed works, students are given individualised technical support and immediate feedback on their works in progress.

Module aims

  • Introduce students to the principles, controls and workflow inherent in building, texturing, animating and rendering 3D models in a professional 3D modelling package.
  • Provide students with support to further develop their production skills
  • Guide students in understanding how digital media arts are used within industry
  • Provide students with experience of “real world” industry briefs
  • Support students in focusing their practice

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
1 Generate ideas, concepts, proposals, solutions or arguments in response to set briefs C
2 Comprehend implications and potential for Digital Media Arts presented by new developments in the 3D Modeling and Animation industries K
3 Demonstrate ability to combine multiple techniques learned at level 4 (still imagery, audio, video, animation, interaction) in the creation of a 3D Animation K
4 Realise negotiated practical outcomes taking into account creative, logistical, and budgetary requirements C
5 Study independently, set goals, manage their own workloads and meet deadlines PT
6 Select, test and make appropriate use of software, processes and environments PT
7 Select and employ communication and information technologies. PT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

Allow students to understand how any compositing skills introduced in Level 4 are combined and used in the 3D Modelling and Animation industries.  The students will build on these skills using professional 3D software and techniques.

The learning and teaching methods include:

  • Lectures and demonstrations 

  • Tutorials and open-ended tasks 

  • Critiques and individual tutorials 

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list

Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: DMA2010

Other information


Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Digital Media Arts with Media Studies BA (Hons) 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Digital Media Arts BA (Hons) 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2019/0 academic year.