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The 'Skills Gap' in Animation/VFX industry in Scotland

Mortimer, Jonathan; Pilcher, Nick; Richards, Kendall


Kendall Richards


This presentation outlines the perceptions of professionals from the animation/vfx industry in Scotland regarding the teaching of animation in Further and Higher Education. The concept of a possible 'Skills Gap' was explored through questions posed to eighteen participants in in-depth qualitative interviews. These interview yielded extensive discussion, revealing many interpretations and perceptions. Participants identified a clear disjunction between skillsets required for industry and their expectations of graduates and curricula. Findings further show that a multitude of skills is perceived to be required to plug this ‘Skills Gap’ in an industry with highly diverse subspecialties. Overall, the interview data shows industry wants students with multidisciplinary skills who are creative, technical, and team players in many different roles. Key questions also arose: if there is indeed a Skills Gap, then whose Skills Gap are we needing to address? Is it of the students? Of the tutors and institutions? Or is it the complexity of an ever-changing Animation industry? Discussions suggested that in order to plug any existing Skills Gap, it is necessary to focus on skills and aptitudes in students, but also in tutors and lecturers, and on the opportunities offered in industry for student experience. We outline a number of suggestions for how industry and the education sector can collaborate more closely in order to produce a series of skills options available to graduates for an increasingly significant profession in Scotland, and for ways in which government policy can support the developing animation/vfx sector in Scotland. Keywords: Animation, animation/VFX, Pedagogy, Skills Gap, Industry, Profession

Presentation Conference Type Keynote
Conference Name Educating Animators Conference
Start Date Nov 14, 2019
Deposit Date Mar 10, 2023
Publicly Available Date Mar 10, 2023
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