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Design Department

BFA - Art, Concentration in Animation/Illustration

The award-winning Animation/Illustration program is committed to providing a world-class education at an affordable price, preparing students for careers in feature film animation, games, television and any other media that uses animation and storytelling as a core communication tool. Industry professionals and peer educators rank SJSU Animation/Illustration among the best in the nation. The core curriculum combines both traditional and innovative educational strategies. Rigorous drawing classes and intensive study of color theory, design, perspective, and conventional and digital painting are required, as well as the study of the principles of both traditional and 3-D animation, physics of motion, modeling, storyboarding, character design, and visual development. Upper-division classes further define these disciplines offering students an opportunity to specialize in their area of choice.

All students must pass a milestone portfolio review to remain in the BFA program. Students who were admitted as BFA Animation/Illustration and do not pass portfolio review will be changed to BA - Design Studies majors with a specialization in Animation/Illustration. This specialization provides instruction in A/I foundation skills, supplemented by studies in design, film, photography, and theater arts. Students receive basic preparation for entry-level jobs in the entertainment industry; optionally, they can later apply to a graduate program in Animation, Illustration or similar fields of study.

The BFA in Animation/Illustration is a highly impacted major. This means that the number of applications from fully eligible students far exceeds the number of spaces available in the program. Students interested in an impacted major must apply for admission during the initial filing period for admission in the fall. Applications for admission to impacted majors are not accepted after the initial filing period.

University Graduation Requirements

Students must complete all residency, curriculum, unit, and GPA requirements as outlined in the Graduation Requirements section of the Policies and Procedures.

4-Year Program Roadmap

Students may find a roadmap for this program here. Roadmaps should be used in consultation with the catalog and your advisor to identify additional requirements for completing the major (for example, course grade minimums). Associate Transfer Degrees (ADT) pathway roadmaps can be found here.

Major Exceptions

This degree program meets certain University Requirements through approved major modifications. Please see the Major Exceptions area in the Policy and Procedures section of this catalog to identify the specific adjustments for this degree program or contact your major advisor for more details.


Course Requirements

University Graduation Requirements36
Core Lower Division General Education27
Of the 39 units required by the university, 12 units may be satisfied by coursework outlined below. Courses that meet GE Areas A1, A2, A3 or B4 must be passed with a "C-" or better to meet the requirement. Consult with major advisor for details.
Upper Division General Education
Of the 9 units required by the university, 9 units may be satisfied by coursework outlined below. Consult with major advisor for details.
American Institutions6
The 6 units of American Institutions (US123) coursework shown below also fulfills GE Areas D2 and D3. Other courses meet the American Institutions requirement, but may not include additional GE areas. The American Studies (AMS 1A/B) and Humanities Honors (HUM 1A/B, 2A/B) programs both offer larger integrated packages that meet this requirement. Consult with major advisor for details.
Complete one sequence from:
African American Studies6
AFAM 002A. African Americans and the Development of America's History and GovernmentD23
AFAM 002B. African Americans and the Development of America's History and GovernmentD3+US1233
Asian American Studies6
AAS 033A. Asian Americans in U.S. History ID23
AAS 033B. Asian Americans in U.S. History IID3+US1233
U.S. History and Government6
HIST 015. Essentials of U.S. History D2+US13
POLS 015. Essentials of U.S. & California Government D3+US233
Chicana and Chicano Studies6
CCS 010A. Mexican Americans and the Development of U.S. History and GovernmentD23
CCS 010B. Mexican Americans and the Development of U.S. History and GovernmentD3+US1233
Physical Education
Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement3
At SJSU, students must pass both the SJSU Writing Skills Test (WST) and a 100W course. For additional information on the WST, please see http://testing.sjsu.edu/wst. Exceptions to the GWAR may be found at http://info.sjsu.edu/gwar.html.
A grade of C or better (C- not accepted) is required to meet graduation requirement.
DSGN 100W. Writing Workshop: DesignZ3
Preparation for the Major36
ANI 011. Illustration Fundamentals I3
ART 024 will also be accepted for transfer students
TA 005. ActingC13
Will also accept ARTH 72 Design in Society
Complete one course from:
ARTH 070A. Art History, Prehistoric to MedievalC13
ARTH 070B. Art History, Renaissance to ModernC13
ARTH 070C. Arts of AsiaC13
Highly Recommend Students take ARTH 070B
Additional Support Courses27
ANI 010. Light and Optics3
ART 012 will also be accepted for transfer students
ANI 013. Drawing for Animation/Illustration I3
ANI 021. Color Principles for Screen Arts3
ART 014 will also be accepted for transfer students
ANI 031. 2D Animation I3
ANI 041. Introduction to 3D Modeling3
ANI 061. Introduction to 3D Animation3
ANI 071. Visual Principles3
ANI 101. Visual Storytelling3
ANI 111. Drawing for Animation/Illustration II3
Requirements of the Major48
Core Courses21
ANI 121. Illustration Fundamentals II3
ANI 122. Illustration Fundamentals III3
ANI 131. 2D Animation II3
ANI 132. 2D Animation III3
Area R Course3
Area S Course3
Area V Course3
Specialization Area21
Choose a Specialization area in Animation or Visual Development.
Specializations are a cluster of courses used by departments for advising purposes. Specializations will not appear on transcripts or diplomas. Please see advisor for more details.
Animation21
ANI 161. Digital Animation I3
ANI 162. Digital Animation II3
Four Approved Electives12
Complete one course from:
ANI 133. Animation Production - Storyboarding3
ANI 134. Animation Production II3
Visual Development21
ANI 123. Visual Development I3
ANI 124. Visual Development II3
ANI 141. Digital Modeling I3
Four Approved Elective12
Capstone Requirement6
ANI 198. Senior Seminar Animation/Illustration3
ANI 199. Senior Project Animation/Illustration3

Total Units:120