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Diploma of 3D Animation


Step into the world of animation, then step out with the skills to take on the world

Our diploma has been built in a way that gives you plenty of face-to-face time with expert lecturers and many hours on the latest tools and software.

Take a practical first look at modelling, lighting, shading, animation and rendering to gain a holistic, foundational understanding of the 3D production process.

You will engage in collaborative studio based learning to produce a short animation in response to a client brief. You will be guided through the production methods needed to pitch effective creative concepts to potential producers.

To complement your technical skills, you will graduate with employability skills, introductory project management skills and scholarly techniques for higher education.

Upon completion you will be eligible for up to 80 credit points towards either the Bachelor of Animation (Character Animation), Bachelor of Animation (VFX) or Bachelor of Animation (Modelling).

Find our more about Studying Animation at SAE

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Graduate roles may include

  • Junior 3D Modeler
  • Junior Character Designer
  • Junior 3D Animator
  • Freelance Animator
  • Junior 3D Visualisation Specialist


Sapphire Sheedy


Alumni Superstars
Sapphire Sheedy was developing motion graphics for advertising agencies when she graduated from SAE Sydney with a Bachelor of Animation.

This on-the-ground experience gave her the opportunity to intern at SLR Productions, an animation studio in Sydney. She is now a designer here.

Read more



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  • Brisbane
  • Byron Bay
  • Sydney
  • Melbourne
  • Perth



From day one you'll start creating on the latest software and equipment, under the guidance of expert lectures. 

  • Study in a collaborative, studio-based environment.
  • Learn on industry-standard animation software including Autodesk Maya and Adobe Creative Suite.
  • Learn as part of a small class.
  • Learn from lecturers with extensive animation experience and industry connections.
  • Apply industry-standard project methodologies throughout your studies.

Diploma of 3D Animation

The Diploma of 3D Animation has a strong practical focus, underpinned by key theoretical components. The course content is informed by our strong links to industry and our 40-year history in designing and teaching creative media courses.

To complement your technical skills, you will graduate with skills across:

  • Employability skills specific to creative media.  
  • Introductory project management.
  • Teamwork and collaboration in the context of creative media.
  • Scholarly techniques for further education.

Stages of Animation HE Diploma


Upon completion you will be eligible for up to 80 credit points towards either the Bachelor of Animation (Character Animation), Bachelor of Animation (VFX) or Bachelor of Animation (Modelling).


1800 SAE EDU



During your course you will gain an introduction into:

  • Interpreting and responding to a design brief
  • Creation of 3D digital models
  • Production of 3D assets
  • Designing animations and digital visual effects
  • Storyboards
  • Visual design
  • Character rigging and staging
  • Drawing

SAE Institute Australia Fees and Financing




Graduate Outcomes

  • Junior 3D Modeler
  • Junior 3D Animator
  • Junior 3D Visualisation Specialist
  • Junior Character Designer
  • Freelance Animator


Diploma of 3D Animation (NT5AN)
Trimester 1
Animation Studies and PracticeDrawing for AnimationVisual Design
Foundations of 3D GraphicsIntroduction to 3D Animation
Employability Skills in the Creative Industries   
Trimester 2
Contemporary Industrial PracticesCharacters and Staging
Animation Production
Employability Skills in the Creative Industries   
  • Discipline Specialisation Unit
  • Multi Discipline Unit
Trimester 1
Animation Studies and Practice
Drawing for Animation
Visual Design
Foundations of 3D Graphics
Introduction to 3D Animation
Employability Skills in the Creative Industries
Trimester 2
Contemporary Industrial Practices
Characters and Staging
Animation Production
Employability Skills in the Creative Industries
  • Discipline Specialisation Unit
  • Multi Discipline Unit

Key Info


    2 Trimesters


    Feb 2018

    May 2018

    Sep 2018


    Enrol By: 05 Feb 2018

    Start Date: 05 Feb 2018

    End Date: N/A



Entry requirements

Applicants for Diploma courses must satisfy one of the following minimum entry criteria:

  • Provide a copy of an Australian Senior Secondary Certificate of Education (SSCE) that has been awarded by an agency or authority of a State of Territory for the student's completion of year 12;  OR
  • alternative entry for applicants who do not meet the requirements above.

Under section 6.8 of the Student Progression, Exclusion and Graduation Policy, SAE reserves the right to apply conditional enrollments to students who apply to SAE via alternative entry. The Academic Coordinator will determine an appropriate set of support mechanisms for each student, based on individual experience and merit.

Applicants for the Diploma of Music Production - see below.

Alternative Entry

SAE recognise that preparation for study is not restricted to formal educational attainment and that valuable cognitive and skills development can be gained through experience. SAE will review applications on a case by case basis if you:

  • are at least 18 years of age;
  • do not have formal qualifications for entry;
  • seek admission to courses on the basis of your aptitude for higher learning and skills development through professional, work, life experience and non- accredited study

To apply via alternative entry, students are required to undertake an interview with an assigned representative of SAE and provide supporting evidence that may include:

  • records of any formal qualifications attained;
  • evidence of any informal studies undertaken;
  • references relating to work history relevant to the chosen field of study (if applicable);
  • resume or curriculum vitae; AND
  • a portfolio of relevant materials that demonstrates creative aptitude, knowledge, technical skills and abilities

In addition, candidates may also be asked to undertake an exam or written assignment to satisfactorily demonstrate capacity to meet the program requirements.

In all cases alternative entry into any HE diploma program will only be granted to students with at least a Year 10 level of schooling.

Diploma of Music Production

In addition to the above requirements, students wishing to enrol in the Music Production Diploma will also be invited to participate in an interview and audition process. This process will help to establish underlying music skills and knowledge as well as program suitability. Remote interviews can be arranged for international students. Students can submit a portfolio of work as an alternative to the audition.

Portfolios may include;

  • Links to your music or musical performances Youtube, Soundcloud etc.
  • Links to online portfolio pages
  • Statement providing an overview of existing skills and knowledge in music production, including examples from senior secondary music classes, AMEB & CPM certification, appointment in school orchestra’s or bands etc.

Fees and Payments

Fees: view our current Fee Schedule for information on SAE course fees.

Payment options: Fee-Help, or upfront trimester instalments.