The 2020 Best Visual Effects and Animation Schools - Production Excellence Schools and Colleges in the World rankings is something we take very seriously and no external influences or payments are entered into at any point. Our rankings focus on the quality of students portfolios that are submitted to our judging panel which best reflect the recruitment interview process.

We feel that traditional school rankings that include peer and employer reviews, faculty to student ratio, citations and other data are not adequate when ranking the best creative schools. For a complete breakdown of how we rank the best schools for 2018 please read how we rank the best schools and how we analyse the data in the sections located at the bottom of this page.

So what is Production Excellence?

Production Excellence is an accolade awarded to the very best schools that focus on working as a team to create full 3D Animation short films. Many schools focus on teaching the core skills of 3D Animation, however it takes quite a different approach to creating an immersive experience that replicates a production studio.

We believe that schools that replicate a production studio experience provide a great advantage to students because it encourages team work, a strong understanding of pipelines, scheduling experience, resource management and problem solving.

During the Rookie Awards 2020, entrants were eligible to submit work to Film of the Year categories in either Visual Effects or 3D Animation. Each of these films were reviewed by an official judging panel consisting over 150+ industry experts. The judges reviewed films based on criteria such as creativity, technical skills, story, production quality and originality. Based on these results a range of finalists and winners were selected and a first pass of schools were shortlisted for this award.

School of the Year Trophies

The Rookie Awards are the most important student award and ranking globally as it has a credibility that others just don’t have. It doesn’t let advertising budgets create higher school rankings, it uses industry to assess and judge student work and discounts for any school flooding the awards with entries. Having the ‘employability of the Artist’ as a judging criteria is key, for in the creative fields you can be free of constraint and let the ideas flow but getting and building a career requires an additional ability to be practical and having ideas that can be executed and maintained.
Darryn Melrose, former Chief Executive of Media Design School


Visual Effects
Top Schools and Colleges in 2020 for Production Excellence

The official rankings for 2020 have been calculated based on the performance of student team based projects submitted to our industry panel. Full details can be found further down the page about how we calculate and rank schools.

Rank School Location Score
1 ArtFX School France 90.67 Learn More
2 University of Hertfordshire United Kingdom, Online 86.67 Learn More
3 School of Visual Arts United States 81.32 Learn More
4 ISART DIGITAL France, Canada 76.26 Learn More
5 Escape Studios United Kingdom 71.51 Learn More
6 Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg Germany 68.89 Learn More
7 New3dge France 65.55 Learn More

3D Animation
Top Schools and Colleges in 2020 for Production Excellence

The official rankings for 2020 have been calculated based on the performance of student team based projects submitted to our industry panel. Full details can be found further down the page about how we calculate and rank schools.

Rank School Location Score
1 ESMA France 117.70 Learn More
2 Supinfocom Rubika Multiple Locations 92.69 Learn More
3 Ringling College of Art and Design United States 89.15 Learn More
4 ArtFX School France 85.87 Learn More
5 New3dge France 80.01 Learn More
6 School of Visual Arts United States 77.03 Learn More
7 GOBELINS, l'école de l'image France 73.92 Learn More
8 The Animation Workshop/ VIA University College Denmark 72.46 Learn More
9 UTS Animal Logic Academy Australia 69.19 Learn More
10 3dsense Media School Singapore 67.00 Learn More

2D Animation
Top Schools and Colleges in 2020 for Production Excellence

The official rankings for 2020 have been calculated based on the performance of student team based projects submitted to our industry panel. Full details can be found further down the page about how we calculate and rank schools.

Rank School Location Score
1 GOBELINS, l'école de l'image France 105.22 Learn More
2 School of Visual Arts United States 86.14 Learn More
3 The Animation Workshop/ VIA University College Denmark 78.56 Learn More
4 3dsense Media School Singapore 65.50 Learn More
5 Cleveland Institute of Art United States 64.89 Learn More
6 Atelier de Sèvres France 64.27 Learn More
7 Ringling College of Art and Design United States 62.59 Learn More
8 University of Hertfordshire United Kingdom 61.14 Learn More
9 Savannah College of Art and Design United States 60.52 Learn More
10 DigiPen Institute of Technology Multiple Locations 58.57 Learn More

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Top entries submitted by Visual Effects and Animation Schools - Production Excellence students from these schools and colleges

Follow these links below to view some of the incredible entries that our judging panel were tasked with reviewing. These entries showcase the quality of work created by students which helped rank their schools.

BYGONE

At an isolated outpost on the distant planet of Prospeon-1e, a lone explorer mourning the loss of his family suffers a conflict of conscience when faced with an intruder.

Oeil Pour Oeil

"Oeil pour Oeil" is a student short film made during our graduation year at ESMA Nantes. Directed by Thomas BOILEAU, François BRIANTAIS, Robin COURTOISE, Alan GUIMONT, Malcolm HUNT and Mathieu LECROQ.

The Box Assassin

This is a short film I completed in my senior of college. I was responsible for everything from storyboards to final rendering.The film is about a pizza delivery boy who finds himself in the middl...

UNFOLD

Unfold is a second year VFX Short Film created at the University of Hertfordshire. It follows a story of a Red-Eyed Crocodile Skink who has been experimented on by a scientist and turns into a dragon.

Skid

"Skid" is our graduation short film, made during our last year at ESMA.Directed by Valentin David, Axel Diaz, Clement Feuillet, Damien Gustin, Morgane Le Disez and Florian Rigollet

INSTINCT

Instinct is a graduation short film made by six CGI & 3D Animation students at ARTFX :Mathieu ANTOINE, Arthur ALLENDER, Léna BELMONTE, Cyrielle GUILLERMIN, Victor KIRSCH and Elliot THOMASSON.

400 MPH

Supinfocom Rubika Directed By Paul-Eugène Dannaud, Natacha Pianeti, Alice Lefort, Julia Chaix, Quentin Tireloque, Lorraine Desserre.

Trois Francs Six Sous

student short film made during our graduation year at Supinfocom Rubika. Directed by Florence Blain, Morgane Ladjel, Louise Leblond, Varoon Indalkar, Clémence Ottevaere and Hugo Valdelièvre-Rattier

Sayōnara

Sayōnara is the journey of four CGI & 3D Animation students from ArtFX. Our graduation movie is a tribute to the famous Torii from Miyajima Island. Reaching people’s heart is our main goal.

Pour une poignée de Caramels

"For a fistful of Toffees" is a student short film made during our graduation year at ESMA. Directed by Clara DULAUT, Bérenger GUILBAULT, Martin FETTUCIARI, Ugo MASUTTI, Nikita GAVARD, Timothée MARON...

The Train to Qinling

My senior thesis short, I am responsible for all aspects. This film takes the viewer through a magical experience of a Middle-Eastern traveler that gets lost on a train in China with no one else but a...

SHERGAR

SHERGAR follows Conor, a boy living a fast paced and free roaming life with his friends on the streets of Dublin. Though a life without responsibilities is great fun, it can't keep his head above the ...

Offcut

Offcut is an Animation and VFX short film that follows the adventures of a discarded scrap of wood, who comes to life and finds meaning in music.

Fête de Famille

"Meet the Family" is a short movie made in our final year at Esma. Directed by: Amandine Maygnan, Annie Carrel, Elisa Curau, Kévin Cadars, Nicolas Roland, Pauline Obin, Théophile Calloix.

Bear With Me

Bear With Me is a short film I completed over my senior year at Ringling College of Art + Design. I am responsible for all aspects of the film from pre-production to final rendering. It follows a Pol...

Lucky

A small four leaf clover named Lucky is companion to an old Irish man in downtown Chicago, and their shenanigans are cut short when she realizes there are some things that luck just can't fix.

Love is in the hair

In an american freakshow, a louse living inside the beard of a bearded woman falls in love with a flea living on a dog's fur. Their conflicting environments will put their love through the mill

Avec le Do de la Cuillère

Its's All Graavy ! ESMA movie directed by Lucas Ancel, Theoline Chapas, Edgard Cros, Clement Crosnier, Nolwenn Petereau, Anouk Nedellec, Laurent Wassouf

100,000 Acres of Pine

Megan, a ranger, searches for answers about the death of her bother amidst the vast expanse of the pine forest. However this might not to be all that's pulling her into the woods.

LINE 21

The world is divided by those who live above the clouds, the liners, and those who don't, the underliners.


Detailed information about the top schools and colleges for Visual Effects and Animation Schools - Production Excellence

The following schools are the top Visual Effects and Animation Schools - Production Excellence educational facilities for 2020 and offer great courses and curriculum that produces students that are ready for the challenges faced by professional artists working in Visual Effects and Animation Schools - Production Excellence. Follow the links below to find out more about these schools, their facilities, team, success stories, student artwork and more.

ArtFX School

ArtFX School

ArtFX is a private digital arts college, training its students in CGI, VFX, 3D Animation and Video Games. Located in Montpellier (France), the school was created by professionals of the film, video games and visual effects industries.As the only school in Europe specializing in compositing CGI into live-action footage, ArtFX is a reference for CGI and CG animation training. At ArtFx you will develop professional level skills and build a solid network of contacts thanks to our close partnerships with professional artists. Thanks to these connections our graduates also have a 99% placement rate in major post-production studios within France and around the world.As a private establishment of higher education technical training, ArtFx is a member and co-founder of the Network of French Film An

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University of Hertfordshire

University of Hertfordshire

The School of Creative Arts is the oldest part of the University of Hertfordshire, and its roots date back to 1890 with the formation of St Albans School of Art that later merged with the University in the 20th century. The School prides itself on its devotion to teaching creativity and the skills required to enable students to reach the goals they want from a degree and future career. It combines a wealth of physical resources that cover all aspects of creative arts production from animation, games and film, to fashion, print making, ceramics and architectural design to name a few.

A large base of talented staff with working experience of the industries they teach in allows students to gain knowledge from those who have already worked in the areas they wish to enter after graduation. The School maintains close links with many companies in the creative industries, allowing students to be part of live projects, company visits, guest lectures on specialist cutting edge topics and to get to meet the people and companies who inspired them to begin their journey into art in the first place.

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School of Visual Arts

School of Visual Arts

School of Visual Arts has been a leader in the education of artists, designers and creative professionals for nearly seven decades. With a faculty of distinguished working professionals, dynamic curriculum and an emphasis on critical thinking, SVA is a catalyst for innovation and social responsibility. Comprised of more than 6,000 students at its Manhattan campus and nearly 37,000 alumni in 75 countries, SVA also represents one of the most influential artistic communities in the world.

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ISART Digital

ISART Digital

ISART Digital is an international school of higher education in video games and 3D-VFX animation. The school is based in Paris & Montreal and has a partnership with the Tokyo University of Technology. The school is ranked number 1 in Europe and Quebec (Canada) by LinkedIn, on professional integration in the Game and Interactive Media Design market. This leading position is the result of a studio-oriented policy: - Professional experience is at the heart of the studies, in an alternating structure of a week at school and a week in the workplace, throughout the year.

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Escape Studios

Escape Studios

At Escape Studios, we offer undergraduate, postgraduate and short courses in Visual Effects (VFX), Game Art, Animation and Motion Graphics. We work with an impressive list of industry partners to design and deliver our courses, from MPC, DNEG, Framestore and The Mill, through to Jellyfish Pictures, Milk and BlueBolt, to name just a few! Do you have raw talent and big aspirations? If you're willing to put in the time, passion and hard work necessary, we can promise you a highly vocational, industry-focused training experience, giving you the skills you need to graduate job-ready.

Study in the heart of London's creative scene in our state-of-the-art facilities using professional tools and techniques for a real-life studio experience. Our tutors are experts and have all worked in successful studios. Packed with everything from The Dark Knight to Harry Potter, Thor: Ragnarok and multiple PlayStation titles, their CVs don't get much cooler! Through our industry partners, you'll get to meet, receive feedback and learn from some of the most creative and influential names in the industry as we invite guest speakers and tutors to the studios from the likes of Framestore, Creative Assembly or DNEG.

Our short courses are strongly vocational, designed to give you professional studio experience and train you to the latest standards. After most of our full-time programmes, you'll get a full package of career development support for 12 months after your course.

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Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg

Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg

Since it was founded in 1991, Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg has become one of the world’s leading film academies. The project-oriented “learning by doing” concept has greatly contributed to this. The students are taught and mentored by more than 300 highly-qualified experts from the film and media industries. Around 250 films covering a range of genres are created by teams of students each year. Several win prizes at film festivals. The overriding objective of the programme is to prepare students in the best possible way for a successful career in the film and media industries.

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New3dge

New3dge

New3dge, located in Paris, is a private school of higher education specialized in the fields of Game Art, 3D Animation&VFX and Concept Art. We have tailored our student program and our teaching methods alongside some of the major players in these fields. We recruit our educators from our network of respected professionals around the globe. At New3gde, we give our students the opportunity to learn skills and work with cutting edge technology in an ever-evolving environment, guaranteeing their integration in the video game, 3D animation/VFX field and Concept Art. Our current placement rate is 92% More infos at : www.new3dge.com

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ESMA

ESMA

ESMA CG School is a hiher education institution located in Montpellier, Toulouse, Nante, Lyon and Montreal, with more than 25 years of experience.Recognized for the quality and richness of its artistic teachings, the school offers two courses related to CG Animation and FX: a Prépa Entertainment and a Professional Cycle CG Animation & FX.Our ambition: to offer a teaching in adequacy with the professional environment in order to prepare our students for the various artistic professions and to facilitate their insertion and their success in the world of work.

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Supinfocom Rubika

Supinfocom Rubika

Created in 1988, RUBIKA is a private college specialized in Video Games, 2D/3D Animation and Design. Located on 4 campuses in Valenciennes (France), Montreal (Canada), Pune (India) and Nairobi (Kenya), RUBIKA trains each year more than 1300 students determined to turn their passion into a profession. Our school aims at a balance between cultural, artistic and technical education. Throughout their training, students work on projects in studio mode. This experience-based learning ensures students a rapid professionalization, forging their personal organization and their culture of collaborative work.

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Ringling College of Art and Design

Ringling College of Art and Design

Since 1931, Ringling College of Art and Design has cultivated the creative spirit in students from around the globe. The private, not-for-profit, fully-accredited college offers the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in thirteen disciplines and the Bachelor of Arts in two. The College’s rigorous curriculum employs the studio model of teaching and immediately engages students through a comprehensive, program that is both specific to the major of study and focused on the liberal arts. The Ringling College teaching model ultimately shapes students into highly employable and globally aware artists and designers. www.ringling.edu

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The Animation Workshop/ VIA University College

The Animation Workshop/ VIA University College

The Animation Workshop/VIA University College (TAW) enjoys a strong and wide reputation due to the top educations we provide for the international film industry, yet we are much more than a school. The Animation Workshop is located in Viborg, Denmark. It is a part of VIA University College’s School of Business, Technology and Creative Industries and has expertise in the areas of education, culture, communication, and business development. To this effect, it benefits from a strong international network of artists, professionals, companies, funding institutions, and partner schools.

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UTS Animal Logic Academy

UTS Animal Logic Academy

The UTS Animal Logic Academy (UTS ALA) is a unique collaboration that responds directly to the challenges of the animation and visualisation industries. Located on the UTS campus in the heart of Sydney’s creative precinct, the one year Master of Animation and Visualisation focuses on the application of animation, visual effects, computer-generated imagery (CGI) and emerging technologies in a professional studio environment. Artists in the Academy build on their existing skills and are mentored by practicing industry professionals from Animal Logic, UTS and other industry partners in a custom-built studio using real-world production pipelines.

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3dsense Media School

3dsense Media School

3dsense Media School is a pioneering digital arts school in Asia, preparing students for careers in the media and entertainment industry for over 13 years. Dedicated to providing a real-world education, 3dsense aims to mold the next generation of elite digital artists and designers for the global industry. Some of the properties her alumni have worked on include Interstellar, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, The Avengers, The Hunger Games series, Assassin’s Creed, Game of Thrones and many more. 3dsense was recently ranked top 20 in the world and 1st in Asia in the CG Student Awards 2015, School of the Year category.Besides education, the school also plays a major role in fostering a vibrant arts & design industry through its events and masterclasses.

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GOBELINS, l'école de l'image

GOBELINS, l'école de l'image

Gobelins, L'École de L'Image is a school of visual communication and arts in Paris, with its main location near the Latin Quarter. A consular school funded by the Parisian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, it provides several programs at a range of fees. It is best known for the Cinéma Department of Animation, founded in 1975 by Pierre Ayma, who brought the school into the spotlight. It has an international reputation, producing numerous talented individuals and teams hired by the world's leading animation studios, including Disney, Universal, Hanna Barbera, Pixar, DreamWorks and Warner Bros. Its former students include many strip cartoonists and animation artists such as Didier Cassegrain, Cromwell, Jean-François Miniac, and Pierre Coffin. The faculty includes world-class industry leaders such as Michel Bouvet.

Over the years, Gobelins has introduced major innovations in multimedia content, developing products for the web, CD ROM, Interactive DVD, and public installations. The video department, created by Daniel Boullay and Guy Chevalier for the training of adult students, has since 1985 been prominent in the French technical audio-visual landscape. Led by Daniel Desmoulins, the video department allows professionals to create or analyze techniques, keeping current with the rapid evolution of industry technologies. Gobelins also offers instruction in photography and graphic design.

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Cleveland Institute of Art

Cleveland Institute of Art

CIA offers Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees in 15 majors across art, design, craft, and integrated media. We extend our programs to the public through gallery exhibitions, artist lectures, a continuing education program for adults and children, and the Cleveland Institute of Art Cinematheque, an art and independent film program. With 655 full-time students and 670 total students, CIA offers a personal educational experience with the benefits of a larger institution. Students choose from 15 majors and live and work in Cleveland’s University Circle, one of the country’s most unique cultural centers – recently named by Forbes Magazine as one of the ten prettiest communities in the country.

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Atelier de Sèvres

Atelier de Sèvres

Studying at Atelier de Sèvres means giving free rein to one's imagination and creativity. Never limited, students are continually encouraged to create new, original and unique projects. Creativity has an inestimable value in art and animation schools. The Atelier de Sèvres enables its students to enrich this throughout their training. From directors to scenographers, gallerists, animators and more. Throughout the year, the Atelier de Sèvres receives professionals from the artistic world. These lectures provide students with a better understanding of the area in which they wish to work. Successfully passing the competitive entrance exams requires a tightly managed schedule. For optimal preparation before the exam, timetables and classes are scheduled according to these key dates.

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Ringling College of Art and Design

Ringling College of Art and Design

Since 1931, Ringling College of Art and Design has cultivated the creative spirit in students from around the globe. The private, not-for-profit, fully-accredited college offers the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in thirteen disciplines and the Bachelor of Arts in two. The College’s rigorous curriculum employs the studio model of teaching and immediately engages students through a comprehensive, program that is both specific to the major of study and focused on the liberal arts. The Ringling College teaching model ultimately shapes students into highly employable and globally aware artists and designers. www.ringling.edu

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Savannah College of Art and Design

Savannah College of Art and Design

The Savannah College of Art and Design exists to prepare talented students for professional careers, emphasizing learning through individual attention in a positively oriented university environment.SCAD visionThe Savannah College of Art and Design, an institution with distinctive yet complementary locations, will be recognized as the leader in defining art and design education. By employing innovation in all areas, SCAD will provide a superior education through talented and dedicated faculty and staff, leading-edge technology, advanced learning resources and comprehensive support services.SCAD valuesBeing a student-centered institution.

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DigiPen Institute of Technology

DigiPen Institute of Technology

DigiPen Institute of Technology was established in 1988 in Vancouver, B.C., Canada as a computer simulation and animation school. In 1996, DigiPen moved to Redmond, Washington where it has been a leading educational institution offering various Bachelor’s of Science, Bachelor’s of Arts and a Bachelor's of Fine Arts degree. Aside from these undergraduate degrees, DigiPen also offers a Master’s degree in Computer Science. DigiPen opened a new campus in Singapore in 2008 at the invitation of the Singaporean government, and is currently opening a campus in Bilbao, Spain and expanding into Korea.

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How we calculate the school rankings

Our rankings focus on the quality of short films submitted to the Rookie Awards 2020 as teams, rather than individuals. Each short film receives a score by the judging panel and contributes to each Schools overall Production Excellence score.

Important details about how a school score is calculated:

  • Schools must submit a team project.
  • Each entry receives a final project score. Max 50 points.
  • Each entry receives a team work score. Max 50 points.
  • Each category finalist receives 5 bonus points toward School Score.
  • Each category runner up receives 10 bonus points toward School Score.
  • Each category winner receives 15 bonus points toward School Score.

Is your school missing?

For Students: Please put us in touch with the right person at your school.
For Faculty: Our team is here to help showcase your school to the world. Talk to us today about how to get your school certified, to promote your sucess stories and to make sure you rank highly next year!

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