SHE Level 1
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code M1W625725
Module Leader Edward Horn
School School of Computing, Engineering and Built Environment
Subject Applied Computer Games
  • B (January start)

Summary of Content

This module introduces the key principles, processes and techniques involved in creating an animation sequence, predominantly focusing on 2D animation. Students will explore historical and contemporary developments related to animation practice. Students will apply the knowledge and creative skills they have gained to the design and production of a short animation sequence. Students will explore and practice animation techniques using industry standard appropriate time based software packages.


Key Animation Techniques: Frame by frame, Keyframing/Tweening, Morphing, Use of Layers, Motion/Dynamics, Timing/Easing, Lip Synching, Visemes/Phonemes, Anthropomorphism, Layout Design, Character Development, Sprite Sheets Key Principles: Disney's 12 principles of Animation Types of Animation: Cut-out, Stop-Frame/Stop-Motion, Cel, Drawn, Rotoscoping, Digital, Hybird/Mixed Media, Sprite Sheets Media Production Processes: Conceptualisation, Scriptwriting, Storyboarding, Sets and Backgrounds, Shot classification/Framing techniques (film grammar), Character Development, Audio Synchronisation, Animatic Creation, Synopsis Writing Animation Practice: History of Animation and Contemporary Animation Range of purposes : Film, TV, Web, Advertising, Educational/Informative, Interactive, Conceptual, Games

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module, students should be able to:1. Describe and apply key principles and an industry standard range of techniques used in 2D animation. 2. Demonstrate knowledge of animation history, animation types and production processes. 3. Design and plan a unique short animated sequence. 4. Evaluate examples of animation practice for a range of purposes and audiences. 5. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of current developments in 2D applications. 6. Demonstrate an ability to creatively problem solve design issues related to asset production. 7. Demonstrate a critical awareness and reflect on own work.

Teaching / Learning Strategy

-46 The University 'Strategy for Learning' documentation has informed the learning and teaching strategy for this module. The module material will be introduced through lectures, while practical exercises will be offered to students for sessions in digital design studios equipped with industry standard software. Seminars will be used to review students' work in group and peer feedback sessions and help clarify and elaborate on both the lecture material and the practical exercises. Full use will be made of GCU Learn to provide lecture-based and related study materials, along with sample solutions of practical exercises, thus encouraging the development of independent learning and allowing self-reflective feedback on student performance. Staff-based feedback on student performance for submitted work will be provided in line with the University feedback policy, with summative feedback and grades on the coursework assessment utilising GCU Learn. The additional interactive discussion features of GCU Learn may be utilised, as appropriate to the module, to stimulate independent and flexible student learning outwith scheduled class time. Practice based exercises in digital media studios will include group interaction and individual practice in animation production techniques. In the studio environment, students will be expected to meet interim deadlines for design and planning and share their digital practice with peers. Individual independent study, practice, and directed learning will be utilised. Formative tasks, tutor/peer critiques are integrated into the learning process. Lectures require A/V projection equipment for PC, DVD, video display and internet access.

Indicative Reading

Essential Reading Chong, A (2007) Digital Animation, Basics Animation 02 (AVA Academic ISBN 978-2-940373-56-7 Halas, J., Whitaker, H., Timing for Animation (2009) , Elsevier/Focal Press. ISBN 0240521609 Thomas, F & Johnston, O. ( 1995 6th ed.) The Illusion of Life : Disney Animation , New York Hypertension, ISBN 0-89659-233-2 Wells, P (2006) The Fundamentals of Animation, AVA Academic ISBN 978-2-940373-70-3 Williams, R (2001) The Animator's Survival Kit Faber & Faber ISBN 0-571-20228-4 Recommended Reading Wells, P, (2008) Drawing for Animation, Basics Animation 03 AVA Academic ISBN 978-2-940373-70-3 Wells, P, (2007) Scriptwriting, Basics Animation 01 AVA Academic ISBN 978-2-940373-16-1 Wells, P (2009) Understanding Animation, AVA Academic ISBN 978-0415397-30-8 Online Resources DVDs in library: The Triplets of Belleville (2003) Waltz with Bashir (2008) Persepolis (2008) Spirited Away (2001) British Animation Awards DVDs can be borrowed from library Online magazine for all aspects of computer arts including animation British Film Institute British Animation Awards Use of and similar online tutorial sites

Transferrable Skills

Specialist knowledge and application Critical thinking and problem solving Critical analysis Communication skills, written, oral and listening Effective information retrieval and research skills Computer literacy Self confidence, self discipline & self reliance (independent working) Awareness of strengths and weaknesses Creativity, innovation & independent thinking Able to prioritise tasks and time management Presentation Skills

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Assessment (FT) 18.00
Practicals (FT) 48.00
Independent Learning (FT) 122.00
Lectures (FT) 12.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Coursework 2 n/a 30.00 35% Report (750 words)
Coursework 1 n/a 70.00 35% Digital Folio including animation