posibility of doing phd in 3d animation


hi guys i hope this thread want be banned

im a sri lankan in sri lanka there’s no art schools to do 3d animation(degree)

but i have a great passion and dedication for 3d animation

im currently studying to get to the computer engineering faculty in my university

so i would like to know is there any possibility that i can do my higher studies(masters/phd)i 3d animation?



There are Masters degrees, but from what I gathered are only useful to have to be able to teach at accredited institutions. As far as a PHD, why would you want one in 3D animation? I don’t believe such a thing exists anyhow.


I’m sure I’ve seen a few animations which were a major part of a thesis. You have to be a bit creative, it can’t be just a 3D animation (how is that research?) but maybe it could be related to virtual reality, new dynamic solvers, faster rendering algorithms, etc.


thanks guys any way i hate to be a engineer, coz my dad want me to be engineer,i just want to be a 3d artist but im not able to do my career in 3d in sri lanka coz there’s not much industry here

so only option is to get abroad
and this cannot be done because my family dont have that kind f money

so the only possible way for me is to work hard and get to computer engineering and do masters or higher studies and get in to the industry

as long as i can do 3d stuff im happy to do what ever research and get into the industry:)


I’ve heard of someone getting a PhD in animation, so I think it’s possible.


But the real question is: why? I mean, it’s not like it’s going to increase your employability. All it’s going to do is take up more of your time and more of your money when you could be working instead. Because, at the end of the day, it’s your experience of working in the industry that really counts, and not your degrees or other qualifications. That’s not to say that I think qualifications are worthless, but if you’re struggling to find the money to fund degrees, then I don’t understand why you’d want to go all the way to do a PhD when it’s really not going to help you find a job.


A PHD in animation sounds like some school trying to suck as much money as they can out of naive students. Leigh is absolutely right, I would save your money.


Getting a phd in animation is silly for reasons given above. However, getting a PhD in computer science, with a focus on graphics, seems reasonable. Many important developments in computer graphics have certainly come from the academic sphere.


You are talking to someone who dropped out of college 5 credit hours away from a degree.

I did it on principle.

In regards to the animation PhD question, I was just passing along information. Not offering advice.


If you want an advanced program
check out Carnegie Mellon university.
They do have a very advanced program, and their international studies programs are
very extensive.



Yeah, but that college is full of nerds.

Do you want poindexter on your beer pong team… NO.


Errmm… what principle exactly? Did it work?

(Who are you being defensive to by the way, the post you responded to is clearly to the OP, not you or anyone else in the thread, unless you are the OP on another account that is).


Those programs aren’t in 3D animation though, they’re just computer graphics from a computer science/programming perspective. If he were doing that, anywhere with top notch CS programs is going to be good - Stanford, UC Berkeley, Cornell, MIT, UC San Diego, and yeah Carnegie Mellon.

As others said, a PhD in 3D animation is not likely to be very useful, if it does even exist anywhere. PhD’s are generally useful if you want to pursue academia and research; if you want to be a hands-on 3D artist, than just spending that time working on your abilities is likely to be much more beneficial.


hmmm so it seems that my decision of going for a master or a phd is waist of time and money,so i think i must at least try to get a freelance job

and sheepfactory i checked the courses available in the link that you have provided it seems its all about research and i think i’ll be missing all the fun in the industry doing the fun stuff

i think i’'l have to do more research in this question before going for a decision

any way thanks all of you guys for taking time for replying


Honestly, with the constantly shifting landscape of this industry and the tools, it’s hard to imagine a phd in anything but pure r&d (as opposed to animation production, where the best school would be on the job).

On the other hand, it would be a crack-up to have a dinner party where one of your guests is choking on a chicken bone and someone says, “Is there a doctor in the house?!” and you would be able to answer “yes” to that question.


And still not know what to do:)


Generally an animation degree is a Fine Art degree so the terminal degree in the field is typically an MFA. Many schools offer an MFA in animation if you so desire and can give you a good grounding in film-making following your degree in CE.

However, if you are interested in a PhD, that would be a terminal degree in something like computer science/engineering. With a specialization in graphics or graphics animation, ideally you would be writing/submitting papers for siggraph, developing new cg techniques and solutions, and probably becoming highly desirable to top studios.

It all depends on what your ultimate goal is.


Of course, it all depends on what you want to do with your life. Do you want to be a researcher/teacher or work in industry? We just started a PhD for New Media, but it is heavily research based. You could probably slant 3D graphics with uncanny valley, virtual reality, virtual worlds, cellular, physics based CG research, or even engineering research. It sounds insane, but there are people (even a former ILM artist) salivating trying to get into this degree. Why? Because, there is possibly no ‘better job’ in the world than being a tenured professor (#1 overall job in Forbes…and no I’m not tenured). Phd professors teach 1-2 classes a year, get a 6 month paid sabbatical every 3 years, around a 6 figure salary, and are basically untouchable (though you have to deliver on the grant side of things). With a Phd, you basically have a job for life as universities, especially in this economic climate, are clamoring to increase their terminal degree (non MFA) percentage stats for federal funding. After saying all that, if there is any inkling of you wanting to work in the industry, then I’d have to question your sanity. A PhD is usually 3 to 4 years of intense studies, that requires extraordinary writing abilities, a creative mind at an elite level, peer reviews like you’ve never seen, an insane amount of money, and very little actual 3D work I would presume (mostly writing and mathematics for CG research). If you want a more arts based terminal degree, then I’d suggest the MFA actually and not a Phd. Just know exactly what you want to do, before you make any rash decisions.


Only time will tell.


I’ve got to agree. Dropping out to work halfway through school is one thing but dropping out right before the finish isn’t a very desirable trait on a CV without a really awesome excuse (“Pixar needed me NOW”).

As for the PhD in 3d animation, what Leigh and SheepFactory said. Someone who started with a certificate or an AA degree has a five-six year head start on you when it comes to finding work and getting real production experience. They could be making a high five/low six figure salary as a senior or a lead by the time you graduate and try to get your first job with six figures worth of debt.