Course Title: The Illusion of Life

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: The Illusion of Life

Credit Points: 12

Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


345H Media and Communication


Sem 2 2015,
Sem 1 2016,
Sem 2 2016,
Sem 1 2017

Course Coordinator: Dr Chris Barker

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 2994

Course Coordinator Email:

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

The ‘Illusion of Life’ as a term defines a core principle related to the history, culture and theorems of animation – to animate a form is to give it the appearance of being ‘alive’.

In this course you will examine the historical and theoretical context of animation practice through the examination of emerging critical discourses from the fields of linear animation, interactive media and games.

You will respond to project briefs that require you to engage in a critical dialogue between key historical precedents and your own work. A focus of the course will be situating your work in the broader context of critical enquiry, innovation and practice within the field of animation.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

In this course you will develop the following program learning outcomes:

  • Employ appropriate technical skills and theoretical knowledge to solve problems associated with creative work.
  • Effectively and professionally communicate your ideas to specialist and non-specialist audiences.

Upon the successful completion of this course you will be able to:

  • Critically discuss animation cultures and narrative within a broad historical and theoretical framework (including linear animation, interactive media and games).
  • Produce animated images and narrative sequences as a practice-based engagement with discourses of animated spectacle and storytelling.
  • Explore and apply emergent modes of animation culture within linear animation, interactive media and game production.
  • Investigate appropriate methods to solve problems within the practice of visualising linear animation, interactive media and games.
  • Analyse and critique your own and others’ work, within the context of contemporary practice and critical discourse.

Overview of Learning Activities

You will be engaged in learning that involves a range of activities - both face-to-face and online - such as workshops, tutorials, group and class discussion, class activities and individual research. Your investigation will be informed by lectures, seminars and tutorials and will be focused through your own creative practice during the course.

Overview of Learning Resources

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems.

A list of recommended learning resources will be provided by your lecturer, including books, journal articles and web resources. You will also be expected to seek further resources relevant to the focus of your own learning.

The University Library has extensive resources for Animation, Games and Interactivity students. The Library has produced a subject guide that includes quality online and print resources for your studies

The Library provides guides on academic referencing: and subject specialist help via your Liaison Librarian.

Overview of Assessment

You will be assessed on how well you meet the course’s learning outcomes and on your development against the program learning outcomes.

Assessment may include projects, assignments, critiques, reports and presentations, individually and/or in groups.

Assessment will cover both theoretical and practical aspects of your learning. You will be able to develop your work in relation to your own specific areas of interest in your professional practice.

Feedback will be given on all assessment tasks.

If you have a long term medical condition and/or disability it may be possible to negotiate to vary aspects of the learning or assessment methods. You can contact the program coordinator or the Disability Liaison Unit if you would like to find out more.

Your course assessment conforms to RMIT assessment principles, regulations, policies, procedures and instructions which are available for review online: Assessment