Digital Media Arts BA (Hons) – 2020 entry
Why choose this course
Film, television, animation, videogames, visual effects, immersive media, installation, digital photography, motion graphics, theatre, performance and more. These are all ingredients of digital media arts: a convergence of creative and digital technologies for now and the future.
Our BA Digital Media Arts provides you with a unique set of skills, enabling you not only to creatively contribute to digital media now, but also to be part of their ongoing future evolution.
We pride ourselves on our interdisciplinary approach, giving you the opportunity to collaborate with fellow students and practitioners in theatre, music, engineering, sound design, computing and humanities across campus.
What you will study
From digital cinematography to mixed reality, to motion capture and creative coding, we cover the length and breadth of the digital media spectrum, providing you with the skills you’ll need to launch your career.
This course matches practical skills in story development, filmmaking, digital image production software, visual arts and animation with theoretical, historical and contextual studies. You’ll study a broad and deep curriculum, equipping you with a mix of creative and technical skills and enabling you to work across new and existing specialisms in flexible and collaborative ways.
These skills will give you the potential to flourish in the creative industries both here in the UK and internationally. They also provide a solid foundation for advanced study and research.
|Qualification||Course length||Professional Training||Start date||UCAS||KIS code|
|BA (Hons)||36 months||Oct 2020||W212||View KIS data set|
|BA (Hons)||48 months||Oct 2020||W213||View KIS data set|
Professional Training placements
A Professional Training placement provides you with the opportunity to develop your professional, academic and personal potential, equipping you to be adaptable, resilient, globally minded, confident, entrepreneurial and digitally savvy in the workplace. These qualities are widely recognised by employers and many of our students are offered employment on graduation by their placement provider.
The Professional Training placement year gives our students an insight into their subject and career potential, and early access to professional experience. It can be invaluable in developing work-based skills and helping them secure a graduate career.
Find out more about Professional Training placements and discover how these have transformed our students’ lives and career choices.
The Digital Media Arts course offers an exciting range of Professional Training Year options, enabling students to engage with leading digital media production studios, VFX companies, film and television production outfits, broadcasters, distributors, animation houses and game developers. Students can also work on independent and commissioned projects on a freelance and entrepreneurial basis within 'MIPS,' our bespoke Media Industry Placement Scheme.
Applying for placements
Professional Training placements are usually applied for and secured via our online placement opportunities platform called Surrey Pathfinder, within which students can select and apply for placement vacancies. Placement providers use their own recruitment and selection procedures and the majority of students will secure their placement in this way. However, support is also provided to students wishing to source their own placement, subject to university requirements being met.
Students are generally not placed by the University, however they are given thorough support and guidance alongside access to the vacancy portal representing thousands of placement opportunities each year. Please be aware there may be travel costs incurred when attending interviews and assessment centres at the placement provider’s premises.
Careers and graduate prospects
We offer careers information, advice and guidance to all students whilst studying with us, which is extended to our alumni for three years after leaving the University.
The personal, professional, technical and creative skills that you gain will afford you every chance of success in numerous areas of the creative and cultural industries, in particular within the exciting and evolving world of digital audiovisual production and immersive media development.
While studying this course you’ll be supported by our extensive facilities, equipment and software, including:
- Specialised workstations for games, animation and VFX production
- 4K digital cine cameras
- Lighting and grip equipment
- Motion capture suite
- Green screen studios
- Broadcast television studio
- Multiple performance spaces, film and sound recording studios.
The DMA team
You’ll be taught by staff with high level industry experience, with connections and know-how in film production, animation, post-production, games development, visual effects, immersive media and digital theatre. We’re a team of specialists and generalists, supported by regular visiting industry associates who contribute to the unique nature of the course.
Our students create a wide range of high quality creative work, which we continually promote through our course website and social media channels, giving both industry partners and prospective applicants a real up-to-the-minute flavour of what our students are up to.
We also have an annual graduate showcase in a top London venue every June, which you are very welcome to attend.
We’re always happy to answer any questions you may have about the course. Feel free to get in touch with us.
Terms and conditions
When you accept an offer of a place at the University of Surrey, you are agreeing to comply with our policies and regulations, and our terms and conditions. These terms and conditions are provided in two stages: first when we make an offer and second when students who have accepted their offers register to study at the University. View our offer terms and conditions and our generic registration terms and conditions as a guide as to what to expect.
Please note: our offer terms and conditions will be available in the September of the calendar year prior to the year in which you begin your studies. Our registration terms and conditions will vary to take into account specifics of your course.
This online prospectus has been prepared and published in advance of the academic year to which it applies. The University of Surrey has used its reasonable efforts to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content or additional costs) may occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for a course with us. Read more.
Academic year structure
The academic year is divided into two semesters of 15 weeks each. Each semester consists of a period of teaching, revision/directed learning and assessment.
The University operates a credit framework for all taught programmes based on a 15-credit tariff. Modules can be either 15, 30, 45 or 60 credits.
The structure of our programmes follows clear educational aims that are tailored to each programme. These are all outlined in the programme specifications which include further details such as the learning outcomes.
Modules listed are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that modules may be subject to teaching availability, student demand and/or class size caps.
Please note: If there is an optional Professional Training placement as part of your course, you can view the full module listing for this on the relevant programme specification.
Optional modules for Year 1 - FHEQ Level 4
All modules are compulsory
Optional modules for Year 2 - FHEQ Level 5
All modules are compulsory.
Optional modules for Year 3 - FHEQ Level 6
In Semester 1, students take:
DMA3002 Project Research and Development (30 Credits)
DMA3016 Research Methods (15 Credits)
Plus one optional 15 credit module, choosing between:
DMA3007 Visual Narrative Collaborations
DMA3010 VR/MR and Emergent Media
In Semester 2, Students take:
DMA3013 Final Major Project (30 Credits)
DMA3014 Dissertation A (30 credits)
DMA3015 Dissertation B (15 credits) -AND- Additional Optional 15 Credit Module in Semester 2 (Currently MFC3029 Television Studio Practice)
Timetables are normally available one month before the start of the semester. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week (Monday–Friday). Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities. Part-time classes are normally scheduled on one or two days per week, details of which can be obtained from the course administrators. View our Timetabling Policy (PDF).
On our course, you’ll attend a mixture of lectures, seminars, workshops and tutorials. Practical projects make use of group discussion to review and develop work. Workshops and computer lab sessions are also integral to the course.
Our unique approach combines three principles that are central to our vision:
- Integration of practical technological skills with critical thinking
- Transformation of student experience into creative career opportunities, through engagement with leading industry specialists both on staff and through external partnerships.
- Development of a holistic practice that will enhance your employability, entrepreneurialism and professional adaptability.
In the first year, you'll develop essential creative and technical skills, ranging from the traditional to the digital, including observational image-making, graphic design, photo manipulation, motion graphics, film making and creative coding.
The second year involves a deep dive into 2D 'tradigital' animation, 3D modelling and animation, compositing and visual effects, videogame and interaction design, and digital film production and post-production.
The final year gives you the opportunity to develop your own projects both in groups and solo, and enables you to explore a complimentary research topic in depth. There are also specialist modules in emergent media and collaborative interactive video practices on offer in the first semester.
Most of the course is project based, involving practical and creative outputs. This is complimented with relevant theoretical and contextual studies which enable you to emerge as an articulate, thinking digital media practitioner, culturally aware and intellectually relevant. In other words, a rare breed indeed.
Research students will sometimes help to deliver your modules. These students will be researching in a similar subject to the module, and will have undertaken training prior to being invited to teach. The University has a set of procedures that govern the use of postgraduate research students in this way.
This course is taught by academic staff from the Department of Music and Media.
WEINBREN J Mr (Music & Med)
All taught students are assigned a personal tutor before beginning a programme of study. Personal tutors offer support and advice to students in the areas of:
- Academic progress
- Pastoral/welfare issues
- Personal/professional development and employability.
Modules are assessed individually with credits awarded for successful completion. Assessment is both formative and summative, taking place through coursework and practical projects, reflective reports, group presentations, peer review, tutorials and other mechanisms according to the individual assignments and tasks at hand. We want you to make your very best portfolio work across a range of media outputs, and be able to articulately explain your process, background thinking and the artistic, cultural and technical context within which you operate.
Contact hours can vary across our modules. Full details of the contact hours for each module are available from the University of Surrey's module catalogue. See the modules section for more information.
Learning and disability support
We have two services, the Academic Skills and Development and Additional Learning Support (ALS) which can help develop your learning.
Academic Skills and Development
Academic Skills and Development is a learning space in the Library where our learning development team is based. It comprises dedicated Student Learning Advisers and Information Skills Librarians who can help you develop your academic and research skills, including writing, presenting, revision and critical thinking.
Find out more about the study support available.
Additional Learning Support
Additional Learning Support (ALS) is the University of Surrey’s disability and neurodiversity service. The ALS team supports students with disabilities, long-term health conditions, specific learning differences (such as dyslexia and dyspraxia) and other neurodiverse conditions (including autism spectrum and attention deficit disorder).
If you tell us about any conditions and register with us, we can give you appropriate support during your studies.
We can arrange exam and learning support adjustments, give advice on applications for the Disabled Students' Allowance, and test you for dyslexia and dyspraxia. We can also offer regular study skills and mentoring support.
See the Additional Learning Support website for more information.
English language support
Our English Language Support Programme (ELSP) provides tailored English language support during your studies. It is particularly valuable to students who speak English as a second or additional language, but native speakers are also welcome.
What qualifications do you need?
English language requirements
IELTS Academic: 6.5 overall with 6.0 in Writing and 5.5 in each other element.
View the other English language qualifications that we accept.
If you do not currently meet the level required for your programme, we offer intensive pre-sessional English language courses, designed to take you to the level of English ability and skill required for your studies here. The University of Surrey is also an IELTS test centre.
Suitable applicants will be asked to bring a portfolio of your work to an interview day. Ideally we would like to see examples of your creative practice - for example film, video, photography, graphic design, paintings, drawings, music, sculpture, a game or interactive artwork you have designed. Offers are normally made in terms of grades following a successful interview
During your visit to the University you can also find out more about the course as well as meet staff and students.
If you can demonstrate exceptional academic performance in your schooling to date, you could be awarded an unconditional offer following a successful interview, as part of the University’s Unconditional Offer Scheme.
Recognition of prior learning
The University of Surrey recognises that many students enter their higher education course with valuable knowledge and skills developed through a range of professional, vocational and community contexts. If this applies to you, a process called recognition of prior learning (RPL) may allow you to enter your course at a point appropriate to your previous learning and experience, or to join the start of a course without the formal entry requirements. This means that you may be exempt from certain elements of study in the course for which you have applied and be awarded credit based on your previous qualifications/experience. There are restrictions on RPL for some courses and fees may be payable for certain claims.
Please see the Code of practice for recognition of prior learning and prior credit: taught programmes (PDF) for further information. Please email Admissions with any queries.
|Qualification||Start date||Course length||Professional Training||UK/EU fees||Overseas fees||Professional Training fees|
|BA (Hons)||Oct 2020||36 months||To be confirmed||To be confirmed||Not applicable|
|BA (Hons)||Oct 2020||48 months||To be confirmed||To be confirmed||To be confirmed|
The University will assess your fee status. If you are unsure whether you are likely to be considered a home, EU or overseas student for fees purposes, the UKCISA website offers more information.
How to apply
Learn how to apply for an undergraduate course, see details about the UCAS application process and determine the steps you need to take if you receive an offer to study.
Our undergraduate admissions policy provides the basis for admissions practice across the University and gives a framework for how we encourage, consider applications and admit students.