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Bachelor of Design (Motion Design)

International Close Date: Please enquire

Channel your imagination and creativity towards a career in the dynamic field of motion design.

Motion design is a dynamic and creative field that combines artistry, technology and storytelling. It serves as a canvas for your imagination, allowing you to blend artistic creativity with cutting-edge technology. From idea generation to animation, it's a fulfilling journey of turning concepts into visual masterpieces.

Driven by technology, motion design is an ever-evolving field that offers a perpetual learning curve. You'll have the chance to experiment with new tools and techniques, constantly pushing the boundaries of creativity.

At its core, motion design is about telling stories through moving images. During this degree you'll learn how to craft compelling narratives that deeply engage audiences, whether you're conveying a brand's message, simplifying complex ideas, or evoking emotions through animation.

You’ll gain skills that are in high demand across a range of industries such as advertising, marketing, entertainment and education. Examples of the work you might be involved in include creating eye-catching advertisements, user-friendly interfaces or mesmerizing visual effects for films.

Through this degree you’ll unlock a world where you can craft compelling stories, work across diverse industries, express your creativity, and continuously innovate. It's a thrilling journey that transforms your ideas into mesmerizing visual experiences that defy imagination and have a profound impact on audiences.

Fees for 2024

Domestic Fee
$7,627 - $8,486 per year
Indicative Student Services Fee
$350 per year

University Entrance: NCEA Level 3 (60 credits at level 3 and 20 credits at level 2 or higher) which must include 14 credits at Level 3 in each of three approved* subjects and:

  • Literacy* - 10 credits at Level 2 or above, made up of 5 credits in reading, 5 credits in writing,
  • Numeracy* - 10 credits at Level 1 or above (specified achievement standards, or unit standards 26623, 26626, 26627)

OR a qualification on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework at Level 4 or above in a related discipline.

Due to Covid-19 disruption, if you studied and achieved NCEA Level 3 during 2020, you only need 12 credits per Level 3 subject (i.e. total of 36 credits). Literacy and Numeracy requirements remain the same

* NZQA approved subjects: see

If you have undertaken examinations other than NCEA (e.g. International Baccalaureate, Cambridge Examination), Ara will assess your qualification for academic entry equivalency.

Portfolio demonstrating art/design work

Still want to study but don't meet the Academic Requirements?

  • If you show that you have equivalent skills for tertiary study gained through study, work and/or life experience, you may be able to gain alternative entry.
  • Note: The number of courses you have to complete for this qualification may be reduced where you have relevant credits from previous study, or evidence of similar learning or experience in the workplace.

What if English is not my first Language?

If English is not your first language, we want to make sure that you will be successful in your chosen programme of study.

  • Please provide a result from a test or qualification on the acceptable alternatives English Proficiency Outcomes Chart.
  • If you are a New Zealand Citizen or Permanent Resident, complete an Admission and Enrolment form and Ara will contact you regarding a free assessment.
  • If you are not a New Zealand Citizen or Permanent resident, book an IELTS or other test through the Ara Examination Centre or in your home country.
  • IELTS scores used must be taken from a single IELTS Test Report Form and are valid for two years from the date of the test.
  • What if I have achieved NCEA Level 3 University Entrance?
  • You do not need to provide additional evidence of English Language skills.

Overall IELTS 6.0 Academic

  • 5.5 Listening
  • 5.5 Reading
  • 5.5 Writing
  • 5.5 Speaking

Programme selection committees will ensure that the selection process is consistent across the five specialisations of the degree

These committees review applications received to determine which may be accepted.

The committees also establish criteria and a marking schedule by which all candidates are assessed

The selection committees are made up of tutors from the specialisations

Selection is designed to assess potential for a successful career in a design-related industry and is based on:

  • portfolio material

Those who are not initially accepted but who meet the standard are waitlisted in order of ranking

Funding assistance

If you face unexpected financial hardship during your studies, we have several funds that you can apply for. These are designed to enable you to continue your current course of study. We also have a wide range of scholarships and awards that can provide financial assistance.

Find out more

Career opportunities

This programme will prepare you for a variety of roles including:

  • digital animator
  • game designer
  • digital lighting rigger
  • videographer
  • motion graphic designer
  • concept artist
  • digital model maker

Study pathways

Graduates may choose to enrol in a wide range of programmes including postgraduate study including:

  • Bachelor of Media Arts (Honours) (Wintec)
  • MFA (University of Canterbury)
  • PGDipFA (Massey)
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Art and Design (AUT)

Recommended school subjects

  • Design
  • Photography
  • Art
  • English or English-rich subjects
  • Art history

Bachelor of Design (Motion Design)

FULL-TIME - 3 Years

Channel your imagination and creativity towards a career in the dynamic field of motion design.

Type Degree
Code CH3756
May be available for Study Visa? Yes
International application close date Please enquire
Credits 360
Level 7
Additional Equipment/Fees $1000 per year
May be eligible for Studylink? Yes
May be eligible for Fees Free? Yes
Reference CH3756-MOTD

Fees for 2024

Domestic Fee
$7,627 - $8,486 per year
Indicative Student Services Fee
$350 per year

Placements or workplace assignments are an integral part of this programme. You don’t need to supply evidence of your Covid vaccination status to apply for or to study this programme but please be aware that some workplaces may require evidence from you that you are fully vaccinated for Covid before allowing you to complete work at their organisation. The number of organisations at which your workplace can be completed may be impacted, depending on your vaccination status.

Enquire Now

With an internationally-recognised Ara qualification, the world is your oyster. Our graduates can be found working and making a difference across the globe…


Additional Entry Requirements

Portfolio demonstrating art/design work

See overview for more

Credit Recognition

If you have prior relevant experience or previous related study credits, you may be eligible for credit recognition towards this qualification.

Find out more


Area of Interest

Key Information for Students

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