Teaching

I am currently employed as a Full time lecture in the School of Computing, Informatics and Media, teaching both at undergraduate and postgraduate level on both a modular and project basis.

I am currently responsible for teaching the following subjects:


Motion Capture: for games and animation. Level 2 & Masters modules
 

In these modules students learn both the fundamentals and the advanced techniques used in capturing real motion. Subjects ranging from system setup, managing a capture shoot, prop creation and marker set creation are just a few of the areas covered.

The modules are aimed at industries such as games, animated films and TV. Students are taught in practical sessions, assist in a capture shoot with professional actors and receive lectures from industry as part of these modules. This year Centroid 3D based at Pinewood studio gave a lecture on uses of motion capture.

An innovative teaching and assessment method is used in these modules involving teams of students. Teams are paired to produce MoCap data for their partner group as well as producing a media product from the data they receive. This approach provides both experience of working in the services industry as well working in the animation, games or TV industries.



Computer Animation & Special Effects. Masters module
 

To study this masters module students are expected to have a firm grounding in computer animation or computer generated effects work. From this grounding students continue their study at an advanced level researching and applying a sub area of computer animation and special effects. Popular areas include facial animation, cloth simulation, scene creation, lighting and particle simulation. Notable projects include the creation of custom facial rigs and the experimentation of industry standard cloth plug-ins.



Principles of Media Design
 
In this first year module students learn the research skills necessary to plan and design a media based project. They look at existing work, critiquing this and learning from the mistakes of others. They then using Adobe Flash develop their own product, learning to apply research in the process.


Multimedia Application Development
 

In this second year module students take the skills learned in the above first year module a step further. Students work through all of the phases present in the development of a media product to produce a fully working game. They learn how to successfully complete a project through pre-production, production and post production focusing on user interaction in the design of the product at every stage.

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Development of Professional Skills
 
While it is indeed important to teach practical subject specific skills, personal transferable skills should not be over looked. In response to an industry need this module teaches the skills required to work as part of a team, write a report / essay, give presentations as well as present CV’s and portfolios. In this first year module students are made aware of the soft skills which are necessary. The module is taught with a strong emphasis on employment with a number of guest speakers from industry


As well as teaching the above modules I also advise and assist students studying on my course throughout their final year and master’s productions. I am lead tutor on the BSc Computer Animation & Special Effects course and admissions tutor for the department. These titles hold with them the responsibilities of developing the course as well as advising students applying for the department’s courses. I feel that these responsibilities are in effect just as important as the teaching itself as in this fast moving area any course that is not continuously developed can be out of date in as small a time as a year.

© Copyright 2011 Karl Abson. All Rights Reserved.