3D Animation Certificate: Program Summary

A 3D animation certificate program can prepare students for a career in the field of multimedia art and design. Read on for the program requirements, course curriculum and career options.

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Essential Information

A 3D animation certificate program gives students practical hands-on training in computer graphics and animation for a variety of mediums, such as internet web pages, video games, printed brochures, advertising materials, publications and graphic art projects. Students explore cutting edge technologies in animation modeling, lighting and texturing. Software programs that students learn might include MotionBuilder, Maya, Softimage, LightWave 3D and Animation: Master. The program lasts from 6 months to 1 year and may require a high school diploma or equivalent and a preliminary computer graphics course prior to admission.

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3D Animation Certificate

Coursework focuses on hands-on training in the fundamentals of computer animation, including surface mapping, motion, distribution of volume, lighting and 3D perception. Course topics can include:

  • Computer animation production
  • Computer graphics for animation
  • 3D modeling
  • Video game development
  • Digital imaging
  • Motion graphics for multimedia

Popular Careers

Individuals with a certificate in 3D animation can seek career opportunities in several industries. With the increase in digital animation for advertising, movies and internet content, as well as the advances to make films and video games more realistic, 3D animators can opt for creative, educational or business-related jobs. Possible positions can include:

  • Animated film artist
  • Video game designer
  • Simulation animator
  • Webmaster
  • Software programmer

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

Based on reports from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), job opportunities for multimedia artists and animators should grow by 6% between 2014 and 2024. According to May 2015 estimates from the BLS, these professionals received a median yearly salary of $63,970 (

Continuing Education

Upon completion of a certificate program, students interested in advancing their knowledge and career opportunities can apply to an associate's degree program in graphic design, digital media or computer animation. Students can also pursue a bachelor's or master's degree program in animation, visual communication or media arts.

A 3D animation certificate program equips students in the technologies of computer graphics and animation through extensive hands-on experiences. Graduates may pursue further studies or may opt to choose a career in various sectors.

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