Student in the visual effects animation program works on the computer.

Visual Effects Animation

Master of Fine Arts

Create magic

In this visual effects program, you will expand your animation skills by learning advanced special effects techniques from our industry-expert faculty. You will also develop compositing skills, and learn how to create custom motion capture clips. Your coursework will cover design, marketing and promotion, web and multimedia, medical animation, industrial design, automotive visualization and more.

Best of all, you can earn your M.F.A. in as few as four or five semesters. Throughout, you’ll use the latest technology and build an impressive portfolio to set you apart in today’s competitive market.

What you'll learn in the visual effects animation program

  • Advanced visual effects and compositing skills
  • Custom motion capture clips
  • Motion tracking and rotoscoping

Curriculum and requirements

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Career opportunities

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Estimated cost per credit

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Beyond the classroom

Step outside the classroom and enjoy hands-on learning opportunities and real-world experiences.

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Learning is more than sitting in a classroom

Complete one three-week J-Term course and explore innovative ideas, topics and experiential learning.

Learn more about J-Term

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Our lush, 115-acre campus looks like a tropical paradise and feels like a lively community. Grab a snack at one of three campus eateries. Take in a concert, play or show in the Wold Performing Arts Center.

Visual effects animation curriculum

In the visual effects animation program, you study advanced special effects and animation. 

Course preview

CG 605 Advanced 3D Modeling
Build a fundamental understanding of 3D computer modeling, texture mapping, lighting, and rendering technology for developing animation works. Focus on the application of modeling tools, and acquire a solid grasp of fundamental modeling techniques while completing an animation project employing principal elements of 3D modeling, texture mapping, and lighting art and design.

CG 615 Advanced 3D Animation
Embark on animation projects that allow more discretion regarding theme, topic, tools and techniques employed. Get more sophisticated techniques at every stage of animation development and incorporate them into course projects. Included in these advanced techniques are hierarchical animation, time curves and motion paths, color and light animation, advanced rendering techniques, audio/visual synchronization, and procedural descriptions of natural phenomena, etc. Complete a full-blown animated piece employing one or more such advanced techniques. 

CG 625 Character Animation
Through step-by-step professor-led tutorials, you'll master essential advanced Maya modeling and animation skills through hands-on experiments. The class combines lectures with tutorials to demonstrate the mechanism of advanced Maya character modeling and advanced deformers, rigging and animation. Put the concept to work immediately in class activities, and then apply them to projects.

Visual effects careers

Your M.F.A. will prepare you for a full spectrum of career opportunities, including positions like these:

  • Visual development artist
  • Technical director
  • Texture/surfacing artist
  • Automotive visualization artist
  • Forensic animator
  • Architectural visualization artist

When you graduate, you’ll join an accomplished network of special effects professionals. Our alumni can be found in myriad industry segments and lm credits, including:

  • Blue Sky Studios
  • Nova Southeastern University
  • SA Company
  • Zimmerman Advertising
  • Feature films including GI Joe, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Hercules, The Hobbit, Life of Pi and many more 
Take the next step
Get started on your future today
Complete your application and secure your spot.
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