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Skillset Launches U.K. Animation Courses Accreditation Scheme

The first ever animation courses in the U.K. to receive the British animation industrys official seal of approval were today (April 26, 2005) announced by Skillset. Skillset devised the pilot accreditation scheme in consultation with the industry and education providers.

The successful courses are BA Hons Animation Production at the Arts Institute, Bournemouth; BA Hons Computer Animation and Visualization at Bournemouth University; and HND in Art & Design (Computer Animation)/BA Hons Animation at the Glamorgan Centre for Art & Design.

Marion Edwards, independent animation producer and chair of Skillsets Animation Forum, which has guided the accreditation process, said, The need for an industry-backed accreditation scheme became apparent over recent years as more and more employers began to voice concerns over a lack of some basic, but crucial, technical and production skills displayed by recent graduates. The scheme recognizes animation courses throughout the U.K., which have passed a rigorous assessment process, and, as a result, are felt to be providing their graduates with the sufficient skills and experience to ensure a swift transition into the working community. Congratulations to the first three successful institutions. They have each earned their accreditation which highlights to everyone employers and students where industry has identified best practice.

Skillset is the Sector Skills Council for the Audio Visual Industries. Audio visual industries include broadcast, film, video, interactive media and photo imaging. Sector Skills Councils (SSCs) are independent, U.K. wide organizations developed by groups of influential employers in industry or business sectors of economic or strategic significance. SSCs are employer-led and actively involve trade unions, professional bodies and other stakeholders in the sector.

Accreditation is valid for three years. Successful institutions may benefit from support services co-ordinated by Skillset, which will include tutorials and master classes for course leaders; visiting lectures for students; work placements for students; work placements for tutors; tours of animation studios for course leaders; mentor support for students; provision of resources for courses (industry storyboards, budget sheets, briefs, etc.)

Criteria for accreditation include:

Essential:

1. Drawing as a basis for 2D and 3D Animation

2. Design: Character, Background and Concept

3. Animation: The Production Process

4. Compositing/Shooting on Film

5. Sound recording and breakdown: Voice, Music & Effects

6. Film Language.

Desirable:

7. History of Animation

8. Studio practice and structure

9. Career planning and guidance

Skillset Animation Forum membership is comprised of Edwards, (chair); Catherine Elliott, Tiger Aspect Productions (deputy chair); Bridget Appleby, Cosgrove Hall Films; Ginger Gibbons, Grand Slamm Childrens Films; Hugo Sands, Passion Pictures; Jon Weinbren, Imaginary Productions and TIGA representative; Ken Anderson, Red Kite Animations Ltd.; Laura Slater, PACT; Leonie Sharrock, Welsh Animation Group (WAG) representative; Les Orton, Siriol Prods.; Madeleine Warburg, HIT Ent.; Matthew Sagar, Moving Picture Co.; Michael Foley, Puppetoon/Sumo Dojo Prods. and PACT representative; Mike Milne, Framestore CFC; Nicola Grant, Aardman Animation; Richard Scott, Axis Animation; Rob Newland, BECTU and Victoria Woolgar, HIT Ent.

Evaluation of other animation courses will resume in September 2005. For further information please see www.skillset.org/animation or contact chrisc@skillset.org

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