Students who want to receive academic instruction in animation have a number of options in New Jersey. Courses in this area are generally included as a concentration or as part of a curriculum in a larger degree, such as computer art, digital arts or interactive multimedia. These programs are available at both the graduate and undergraduate levels, though undergraduate programs are more common. Students may need to complete an exhibition or project to graduate. Overviews of the degree programs that include animation courses are provided below for ten of the largest schools in New Jersey. A comparison table with tuition and school info follows.
Brookdale Community College
Brookdale Community College offers associate's degrees in digital animation and 3D design at its campus in Lincroft. The curriculum provides courses in digital video and television, storyboarding and editing, digital design and production, digital media and drawing. Students also receive instruction in several software packages, including Photoshop and Maya 3D. This Associate in Applied Science (AAS) degree requires students to complete 63 credits of coursework to receive the degree.
Fairleigh Dickinson University - College at Florham
Students who want to learn animation at Fairleigh Dickinson University have several options on the campus in Madison, referred to as the College at Florham. Those who are interested in computer science as well as animation can pursue the Bachelor of Science (BS) in Computer Science with a game development concentration; the Department of Mathematics, Computer Science, and Physics offers the degree. A second option, offered by the Visual and Performing Arts Department, is a film and animation bachelor's degree program with an animation track and a video game animation track. A Bachelor of Art (BA) with a concentration in computer art and design is a third option at this school. This degree, provided by the School of Art and Media Studies, includes animation courses. An 18-credit, 6-course minor in animation is also available.
Mercer County Community College
Mercer County Community College in West Windsor offers an associate's degree program in visual arts with a digital media concentration. This AAS degree requires students to earn 65 credits, including 15 credits in their chosen concentrations. Students who choose the 3D animation or multimedia concentration are provided with a slate of electives that includes animation courses. The 3D animation concentration program offers courses in rigging for animation and games, computer animation and motion graphics, while the multimedia concentration curriculum offers courses in motion graphics and interactive web animation.
Montclair State University
Montclair State University offers a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Animation/Illustration at its campus in Montclair. Students in this program learn character design and digital filmmaking along with 2D and 3D animation concepts and theories. They receive training in different types of multimedia and methodologies in addition to screenwriting, 3D modeling and art history. In order to graduate, students must complete a final animation project.
New Jersey Institute of Technology
The New Jersey Institute of Technology in Newark offers a game development specialization in its information technology bachelor's program. Students are required to complete eight courses chosen from a list of electives related to game design and development. The courses offered for this specialization include 3D modeling and animation, game architecture and design, character modeling and animation, advanced game production and simulated environments. The information technology program requires students to earn 129 credits to receive the Bachelor of Science degree.
Raritan Valley Community College
Located in Branchburg, Raritan Valley Community College offers a game development associate's degree. The interactive media courses for this AAS degree cover software, animation, sound and graphics. Other topics covered in the program are game design fundamentals, game video and audio, programming for game developers, data structures and advanced game design and development. To receive the degree, students must complete 63 credits of coursework.
Rutgers University - Camden
Rutgers University provides a bachelor's degree program in studio art at its campus in Camden. Students in this program can specialize in electronic arts, and within that track they choose an additional concentration in either animation or graphic design. Animation students take courses in animation production, computer animation, graphic design, character animation and classical animation. They are also required to complete a thesis exhibition. An art minor that offers the studio art specializations is also available.
The College of New Jersey
The College of New Jersey (TCNJ) in Ewing offers two bachelor's degree programs that provide animation instruction. The BFA in Digital Arts program allows students to specialize in an area or to receive instruction in a variety of digital media disciplines; the curriculum includes interactive digital arts and computer animation courses. The BA in Interactive Media curriculum includes courses in game design and architecture, video effects and compositing, digital figure modeling, animation and digital figure motion. The College of New Jersey also offers minors in digital arts and interactive media.
Union County College
Cranford's Union County College offers two associate's degree programs that provide animation instruction for aspiring game developers. The 65-credit game design creation degree program gives students the choice of four tracks, including animation. The animation track requires students to complete the following three courses: game design and development, principles of animation and 3D game programming. The 66-credit AAS in Game Design Development doesn't offer a specific animation track, but the curriculum includes many of the same courses as the game design creation degree, such as storytelling for digital media, graphic design, basic design, physics and the business of game design.
William Paterson University of New Jersey
William Paterson University of New Jersey in Wayne offers a BFA with a concentration in animation and multimedia. Core courses in the BFA curriculum include color theory and application, Western art, drawing, sculpture and a senior thesis project. The undergraduate animation courses include subjects like storyboarding and production design, cell animation, interactive online media and character animation. William Paterson University of New Jersey also has a 60-credit Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Art program that offers courses in animation, such as storyboarding and design, cell animation projects and projects drawing for animators.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type and Setting||Animation Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition and Fees (2018-2019)|
|Brookdale Community College||2-year, public; large suburb||AAS in Digital Animation,
AAS in 3D Design
|$4,869 in-district; $7,963 in-state; $8,663 out-of-state*|
|Fairleigh Dickinson University - College at Florham||4-year, private not-for-profit; large suburb|| BA in Art with Computer Art and Design Concentration,
BA in Film and Animation with Animation and Video Game Animation Tracks,
BS in Computer Science with Game Development Concentration
|Mercer County Community College||2-year, public; fringe rural||AAS in Visual Arts with 3D Animation and Multimedia Concentrations||$4,206 in-district; $5,394 in-state; $7,638 out-of-state*|
|Montclair State University||4-year, public; large suburb||BFA in Animation and Illustration||$12,790 in-state; $20,578 out-of-state*|
|New Jersey Institute of Technology||4-year, public; large city||BS in Information Technology with Game Development Specialization||$17,338 in-state; $32,750 out-of-state*|
|Raritan Valley Community College||2-year, public; fringe rural||AAS in Game Development||$4,612 in-district; $5,692 in-state; $5,692 out-of-state*|
|Rutgers University - Camden||4-year, public; small city||BA in Studio Art with Electronic Arts Specialization||$14,835 in-state; $30,613 out-of-state*|
|The College of New Jersey||4-year, public; small city||BFA in Digital Arts,
BA in Interactive Multimedia
|$16,551 in-state; $28,266 out-of-state*|
|Union County College||2-year, public; large suburb||AAS in Game Design Creation with Animation Track,
AAS in Game Design Development
|$5,140 in-district; $10,280 in-state; $10,280 out-of-state*|
|William Paterson University of New Jersey||4-year, public; small city||BFA in Art/Fine Arts with Animation and Multimedia Concentration,
MFA in Art
|$13,060 in-state; $21,260 out-of-state*|
Source: *NCES College Navigator.