Skip to main content
Sign In

University of Colorado Denver

College of Arts & Media
 

3D Graphics & Digital Animation

Visual Arts Department


​The Digital Animation Center is committed to providing quality instruction in 3D theory and techniques intended to prepare its students to succeed. Students will be prepared to excel in a multitude of industries including feature film, broadcast, scientific visualization, medical imaging and engineering.

The DAC's precisely focused curriculum prepares students for careers within a urban, 4-year university experience that is a well-rounded liberal arts education with the traditional components of a fine arts education, in state-of-the-art facilities and acquiring high-tech skills needed for this demanding curriculum.

University of Colorado Denver College of Arts and Media 3D Graphics and Digital Animation program will strive to provide the highest level of university-level undergraduate instruction in the theory, practice and application of digital 3D media. The goal of the CU-Digital Animation Center is to bring together diverse scholars and practitioners who seek creative imaging and visualization solutions for evolving research and to set them in partnerships with artists of digital media. Such collaborations will provide the visual solutions for explaining and defining complex technical data.

The CU Denver DAC, is dedicated to producing productive competent animators that are problem solvers, critical thinkers and are prepared to enter the workforce as leaders and managers. As a Fine Art major at one of the nation's top universities, you will receive a well rounded, quality university education and upon successful completion of all requirements will be awarded a Bachelor of Fine Art with an emphasis in 3D Graphics and Animation.

Why be a button pusher when you can be an artist, a problem solver and a leader!

Check out DAC's latest event listings on Facebook.

To learn more about the Digital Animation program at CU Denver and to see student work, please visit the DAC website:

www.cu3d.org

You can also find the DAC on Facebook at:

http://www.facebook.com/CUDenverDigitalAnimationCenter

Join our community!

​To Prospective Students (freshmen & transfer):

Students are strongly encouraged to apply for a Fall semester start (the DAC accepts Fall applications only). This is due to the fact that the majority of the first-semester courses are offered in Fall semesters only.  The Visual Arts and DAC majors are highly sequenced and pre-requisites are strictly enforced.  Students who begin in the Spring and Summer semesters may find that their required courses are not offered until the Fall semester. 

Education for Future Professionals…

Classes cover all areas of 3D graphics and animation. The program use Alias MAYA as the primary software application for training. In addition to the 13 required classes for a BFA, Visual Arts with an emphasis in Digital Animation (this degree) students will take a standard range of core academic and foundational art classes such as drawing foundations, 2 and 3-dimensional design, color theory, art seminar, art history survey—and are taught by veterans in the fine arts.  Whether you’re looking to set up your painting or drawing studio, work as a graphic artist or illustrator, or are interested in product design or advertising, the College of Arts & Media combines a thorough academic curriculum with internship and extracurricular opportunities. 

To learn more about the opportunities awaiting you in the 3D Graphics and animation program, please contact a College of Arts & Media advisor.

Taught by Professionals...

Our faculty is committed to helping each student at the Digital Animation Center strive to attain their full potential. This goal is achieved through the enthusiasm of our staff, industry standard software state of the art computer workstations, and sophisticated motion capture systems and HD, green screen technologies.

The CU Denver DAC faculty are experienced professionals with many years of real, practical work experience in a wide variety of animation expertise from broadcast, film, museum, scientific visualization, simulation and the gaming industries. Members of our staff have worked as both fine artist and commercial artist giving them a unique perspective on the application of animation techniques. Working as Technical Directors, Creative Directors, Art Directors, Producers and Directors as independent artist and in prestigious studios like Paramount, LucasFilms LTD., Universal, and with unique experience with high-end, fully immersive presentation technology, our staff will deliver to you a sound foundation of knowledge that will lead to a rich and rewarding experience as a top-notch animator.

Both in and out of the classroom, faculty members provide you with the solid support and motivation you will need to succeed in the enthralling business of animation.  To learn more about your future mentors, select their name to visit their web pages, or visit the faculty home page.

The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Fine Arts Degree...

Students pursuing careers in 3D Graphics and Animation receive a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Visual Arts, Emphasis in Digital Animation from the Department of Visual Arts in the College of Arts & Media, a degree awarded by the University of Colorado Denver.

For more information on admission procedures for this degree program please visit http://www.cu3d.org/index.php/dac-program/admissions-criteria/admissions-process or contact a CAM advisor at CAMAdvising@ucdenver.edu.

Going Places...

As a 3D Graphics and Animation graduate from the Visual Arts program, the career opportunities available to you are as limitless as your motivation and imagination.  Here are just a few of the options available to this program’s graduates. The goal of the DAC is to prepare graduates ready to enter the workforce as professional artist ready to meet the challenges of the collaborative work environment of the entertainment and feature film industries. Amongst the many career choices for the digital animation student are:

  • Computer Animation
  • Film/Video Animation
  • Visual Effects
  • Medical Animation
  • Broadcast Television
  • Graphic Design
  • Forensics Animation
  • Digital Arts/Multimedia Design
  • Advertising
  • Marketing
  • Visualization
  • Product Design

The Digital Animation Center’s 4-year degree in Digital Animation is regarded as one of the top programs in the country. CU Denver graduates of the animation program have had a hand in making a number of the top animated films in recent history, working as artist the big studios including PIXAR, Disney, LucasFilm, ILM, Dreamworks, Sony, ReelFX, Electronic Arts, and Bioware. DAC Graduates also worked on some of the highest rated games and TV offerings. In 2010, 2011 and 2012, DAC graduates work for Los Angeles based Stargate Studios, won the Special Effects Emmy’s for their special effects work on NBC’s "Heroes" and AMC’s "The Walking Dead."

Admissions...

Beginning with Summer semester 2013 the DAC will be lowering the tuition for the program. This reduction represents a $12,300 savings for the four-year degree emphasis from the previous rate and places the DAC as one of the more affordable 4-year animation degrees in the country. Thirteen courses of the degree emphasis area are offered through Extended Studies and have a higher tuition rate. The DAC has a two tiered tuition system. The first two introductory classes to the DAC are at the “tier one” rate of $1038 (or the current "Main Campus" three-credit course rate). The remaining 11 “Tier Two” courses are at the rate of $3030 per class. This cost is above and beyond the cost of attending CU Denver.

The DAC is completely self supporting and all tuition monies go to support, amongst other things, the cost of the well equipped labs, the state-of-the-art technology, small class sizes, industry lecture series, scholarships (2nd year and higher) and the general operations of the program.

Please consult CAMadvising@ucdenver.edu for the current course cost.

The first two courses of the DAC emphasis, FA1810 and FA1820, are open to all students (subject to class size caps). Selection for confirmation to the DAC Core Cadre – between 28 and 34 students are selected for the core cadre each year for continuation of the degree emphasis is at the end of the first year and is by portfolio review based on year one work in both animation and foundational art courses. Should the student candidate not be confirmed into the DAC Core Cadre, a number of fulfilling and equally viable degree options within the College of Arts & Media are available to the student in Digital Design, Film, Recording Arts, or Studio Arts.

Students who wish to transfer to the College of Arts & Media from another college or school at the University of Colorado Denver must formally apply to the College of Arts & Media.  Students will be considered for admission on either their overall GPA in applicable coursework from CU and all previous institutions, or on their last 15 credit hours.  Applicants with less than a 2.0 GPA in related courses (from CU or other institutions) and an overall CU GPA of less than 2.0 will be denied admission even though they may meet other requirements for consideration.   

Explore this emphasis or contact a CAM advisor for further information.