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View Full Version : Swansea Met Uni 3D Ani Course


cbamber85
03-26-2009, 05:28 PM
I will be graduating in a couple of months from Swansea Metropolitan University, and I have to say, it was huge disappointment and a great financial cost.

Although it didn't say on their info the first year is treated like a foundation year, you see there is a BSc and a BA course, and they're advertised as separate courses. So I applied for the BSc course, however what really happens is that the BA's and BSc's are lumped together in a super class, they're reasoning is sound for this though: few people in the past have known much about CG so offer them both sides and allow them pick in the second year (it's a three year course). Unfortunately the lecturers at the time were only really trained in traditional animation techniques and knew nothing of modelling, FX, coding, etc. So the course was in effect BA (a bad BA at that).

I had a real problem with this, what if you know what you want to do and have been dabbling in 3D for years? As many of you will know, if you show enough skill in any course you can skip a year. So I asked if I could move directly into year 2 (real BSc), I got told I needed an Art qualification, I was gobsmacked by this - you needed an A-level in Art to get onto the course! I even showed that work I had done years before surpassed their 3rd year work, no avail, why? Something to do with the 3K for that year perhaps...

Unfortunately though, nothing improved. The school didn't hire anyone from a BSc style background, and we were effectively left alone, BA lecturers would try to teach us but obviously couldn't answer any questions. So I complained about some lecturers - a few left, but no one decent replaced them. Now, halfway through the final year they finally have a couple of really good BSc lecturers with (gasp!) industry experience and a real passion for the work.

My parting opinion then is this: If you want to do character animation, the school is damn decent. If you want to do technical work: show a little coding skill and some nice renders, and then demand to move into the second year, at the interview stage would be best.

notsosure
04-15-2009, 08:46 AM
Pity you should of gone to Teesside at least their CG stuff is in the proper department School of Maths and computing, not like these colleges that make weak links in their depts and start of lousy BSC courses.
I heard it was a trash course I know one of the guys who used to work their he said that the manager who runs the show knows ape sh*t about animation and does not even like the stuff. Yet when it comes to handing out degrees he can not give them out fast enough owing to his boss on his back, as they get loads of money from the Government.
These software oriented courses are a waste of time, one is better off learning it yourself. There are so many books, DVD's and web tuts that if one really wants to know this CGI stuff then teach it yourself and save loads of money.

This guy worked at your Uni

http://www.smu.ac.uk/sand/SANDpresenters.html#AlanLewisand

he left to set up his own company teaching on line yet not a mention on the Swansea web page that he worked at Swansea on the animation course (I wonder why?)

cbamber85
04-15-2009, 12:35 PM
Funny you mention that, I tried to get (what I thought was) a pointless, bureaucratic module taken off and replaced with a math or computer science one. I asked around my class and spoke to my lecturers and everyone thought it was a good idea, bare in mind we only have about 14 hours of lectures a week, so adding more modules is hardly an earth-shattering request. I got told that it wouldn't happen because someone might complain - well what do you say to something as astonishingly inane as that?

And yeah the Uni gets truckloads of money every year, most of which goes to reducing the cost of Welsh student fees, which is fair enough. But of course they have to justify it, so they give out degrees like website tutorials. ;) I got told by a lecturer last year that no-one has ever failed, she said it totally straight-faced, I'm still not sure I entirely believe her judging by the utter crap that gets churned out here. Speaking of money, a couple of lecturers (ones that aren't here anymore...) told me that the Uni had just bought a few Realflow and Renderman licenses. Now, no-one mentions them, I wonder why? Is it because none of the lectures have a clue how to use them...

notsosure
04-15-2009, 01:39 PM
What a BSc without maths and or computer science and that no-one has ever failed.

WOW so what did you guys do? Don't tell me you played around with Maya Dynamics engine and they called that a BSC ha!ha!ha!ha!. Poor you I feel sorry for you all (honest)
It's a pity one can not do these Unis for selling false information and courses under the Trade description Act.

Can you ask for your money back?

cbamber85
04-15-2009, 03:45 PM
Can you ask for your money back?
I'm going to look into it, but I'm not confident. I've been thinking of ways to improve the course myself, I'll be suggesting some, but I can do little else.

so what did you guys do?
Well it has mainly been really bad tool-oriented stuff, which I vehemently despise, but like I said they've gotten in some really good lecturers, so this year it's been constant heavy coding - which is great! But of course lacking any structured math/comp. sci module means that the coding often centres around API knowledge rather than geometry knowledge. But it's getting better. Hopefully my suggestions are heeded.

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