Course Title: The Illusion of Life

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: The Illusion of Life

Credit Points: 12.00


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


City Campus


370H Design


Sem 2 2022,
Sem 1 2023,
Sem 2 2023,
Sem 1 2024

Course Coordinator: Jeremy Parker

Course Coordinator Phone: Please email

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: Please email

Course Coordinator Availability: Please 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

You will be assessed on your development against 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:

  1. Critically discuss animation cultures and narrative within a broad historical and theoretical framework (including linear animation, interactive media and games).
  2. Produce animated images and narrative sequences as a practice-based engagement with discourses of animated spectacle and storytelling.
  3. Explore and apply emergent modes of animation culture within linear animation, interactive media and game production.
  4. Investigate appropriate methods to solve problems within the practice of visualising linear animation, interactive media and games.
  5. 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 that are relevant to the focus of your own learning.

There are services available to support your learning, including the University Library and Study Support services. For further information, please visit the Library page on the RMIT University website and the myRMIT student portal.

Overview of Assessment

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

This course has the following three assessment tasks:

• Assignment 1 (15%)    Community of Practice: Emergence    Linked to course learning outcomes 1 and 5.

• Assignment 2 (35%)    Folio 01: Iterative Progression I    Linked to course learning outcomes 1, 2 and 4.

• Assignment 3 (50%)    Folio 02: Iterative Progression II    Linked to course learning outcomes 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5.

Briefs and assessment rubrics for all assessment tasks will be made available in Canvas at the commencement of the course. Students are expected to attend and contribute to class, including providing peer review and peer learning.

Oral feedback on assessment tasks will be provided in class and written feedback via the grading rubric.

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 Equitable Learning Services if you would like to find out more.

A Student Charter summarises your responsibilities as an RMIT student as well as those of your teachers.