Rochester Institute of Technology

Academic Program Overviews

Student Skills & Capabilities, Salary Data, Career Information 

Film and Animation BFA

Program Overview

The BFA Program
RIT offers its undergraduate students more production experience than any other college in the country. Students begin shooting their first film the first week of school. Over the course of four years, students will produce, from idea generation to script to final export at least 3 short films in their chosen medium culminating in a year long thesis production.  Students choose an area of study and work with all technologies and procedures (film, digital and traditional 2D, 3D and stop motion animation) relative to modern filmmaking and storytelling and all genres (fiction, documentary, experimental).

The MFA Program
RIT’s School of Film and Animation MFA degree has several areas of concentration for this terminal degree. These areas include “film” or live action production, screenwriting, 3D computer animation and computer / traditional 2D animation, which includes stop-motion animation. SOFA MFA students have a rigorous first year of required studies in each area and students start producing complete films by the end of the first year. In the second year there are opportunities to customize these studies with electives that can range from programming, rigging, cinematography, writing for the series and many more. There are more opportunies to complete finished films including the final part-time third year, which is totally dedicated to the thesis film. SOFA wants MFA students to develop their own voice as a filmmaker with skills but not as a specialist.

Degrees Awarded

  • Bachelor of Fine Arts
  • Master of Fine Arts


  • Approximately 273 students currently enrolled 220 BFA; 53 MFA

Cooperative Education & Experiential Education Component

  • The School of Film and encourages but does not require students to complete professional internships. More than 60% of our students complete at least one internship before graduation.
  • Usually done over the summer the students may earn credit for internships completed.

Salary Information

Co-op:        Insufficient Data
BFA:            Insufficient Data  
MFA:           Insufficient Data

Student Skills & Capabilities

During the first year, students choose an area of study (live-action production or animation) and learn the basics of film and audio production in terms of both practice and aesthetics.  The core of the four-year curriculum is an organized sequence of productions.  While all students do the basics in all aspects of production, live action may create individual specialties relative to genre, technology and creative specialization.  Animation students typically perfrom all aspetcs of short film production themselves but may tailor their eduction to emphasize desired specialties such as character design, storyboarding, character rigging, etc. By the end of the senior year, students can skillfully direct, shoot, write, edit, and produce their own creative visions and do so in their senior thesis project. Production students also have the option of concentrating on Cinematography, Sound Design, Post Production, Creative Producing, Special Effects/Compositing and Art Direction.
MFA students can develop skills in their area of expertise through exercise skill-based classes in lighting, animation, performance, cinematography, editing, directing, model building, computer compositing, and elective courses in the other CIAS departments. This includes Photography, Compuer Science, Gaming, Teaching, Design and Illustration and additional history and aesthetics classes in Film.

Equipment & Facilities

Facilities are consistent with professional standards and in most instances represent the most advanced state-of-the-art systems (e.g.:  4K imaging, VR)

Selected Employer Hiring Partners

Walt Disney Feature Animation, Pixar Animation, The Third Floor, Blue Sky Studios, Dreamworks Animation, Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, Crossroad Films, paper Airplane, The Mill, DMX Media, Stoopid Buddy Studios, Bix Pix Entertainment, Starburns Industries, BuzzFeed, Echo Lake Entertainment

Contact Us

We appreciate your interest in your career and we will make every effort to help you succeed. Feel free to contact Morgan Faas, the career services coordinator who works with the Film and Animation program. You can access information about services through our web site at
Morgan Faas, Career Services Coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.,  585.475.5469

Rochester Institute of Technology . Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education
Bausch & Lomb Center
57 Lomb Memorial Drive . Rochester NY  14623-5603