Art and Design

This is an exciting, creative and demanding course offering you a broad base of practical ‘making’ experiences and skills for personal exploration and creativity. It is suited to learners who are committed to following a career in an area of art, design or craft. You will have opportunities over two years to exhibit and sell work in public venues, explore materials and techniques, develop a substantial portfolio of work and visit interesting places for research and inspiration. The course has its own base room, dedicated staff and excellent facilities in a friendly, hardworking and exam free environment. Work experience is seen as a crucial part of the course, with opportunities to join enrichment classes and also take an A-level alongside.

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What will I study?

Students have the opportunity to gain practical and creative skills by working with the 2D and 3D materials, processes and techniques. The 1st year explores creativity through ideas involving transformation and metamorphosis, getting to grips with using a sketchbook to discover and experiment with contextual links, ideas, techniques and recording prossesses.   Aspects of drawing, illustration, ceramics and sculpture are used.  A project focusing on character development through drawing leading to 3D realisation.  The final project is 'open' to interpretation working to a theme ending in a group installation.

In the 2nd year students often know which discipline they are attracted to, prepare for interviews for degree courses or Art Foundation, and are encouraged to interpret projects in a way that involves their own interests and to engage with their work in a more personal way.  Drawing, print making, mixed-media, painting and 3D materials and textiles are explored.  As with the 1st year - 2nd years end their year with a group exhibition developed from a general theme.


Designed as a diagnostic course where you discover the route you might want to follow - this might be a discipline like illustration or textiles, or be a preference for working with materials in a certain approach - the units help you discover how you think and create and are best able to express your skills and personality.  Sometimes unorthodox techniques are used for outcomes (mixed-media and textiles to create postage stamps for example).  Each of the two years covers 9 units.  The final 18 units are equivalent to 3 'A' Levels, the grades range from Pass, Merit, Distinction - and Distinction*.

How will I learn?

Students research artistic links to discover the area of study and then will undertake a variety of practical activities and learn different creative techniques in response to a brief.

How will I be assessed?

The course is assessed in these methods:

  • Coursework
  • Portfolio of evidence
  • Presentation

Coursework and a portfolio of evidence make up the main assessment for the course. Each of the units have specific performance criteria that need to be met by your creative responses. Learners must complete all units in order to satisfy the criteria for the diploma qualification.

The course assignments are assessed by your tutors who will give individual feedback on your work. You will be monitored by staff through the tracking process, and you will have the opportunity to carry out peer and self assessments as well. You will track your own progress through the units in your own tracking booklet, so you know what you need to do to achieve. Due to the high volume of work on this course it is essential that deadlines are met.

Are there any trips on this course?

There are trips, they vary between the gallery/museum to see work 'up-close' and to research interesting locations.

Are there any extra costs?

Acrylic Paint 8 tubes (White, Black, Cad Yellow, Cad Red, Ultramarine, Cerulean, Yellow Ochre, Pro Cyan)

Hog Flat Brushes (2,6,8 &10)

Hog Round Brushes (2,4,6 & 8)

Nylon Brushes Round (2,4,6,8 & 0.0)

A3 Spiral Sketchbooks Jumbo

Sketching Pencils 8B ‐2H pack of six

Metal Rule 30cm

A3 Display Book

Pastels set half length set of 32

Masking tape 25mm x 50m

Watercolour half pan

Gouache tubes set of 12

Glue UHU

Zig Micron Pens (0.05,0.1,0.2,0.3,0.5 & 0.8)

A1 Plastic Portfolio

A5 Spiral Sketchbook

A2 Plastic Portfolio

£100 total

The items listed are the essential art materials you will need for your course in September.

 This pack can be pre‐ordered using Wisepay.

 Art materials are available from the college shop at very competitive prices (these are subject to change) do

make sure you visit and see what else is available.

To pre‐order you can do this on the college website using Wisepay, please get your order in as soon as possible

to guarantee it will be here for the beginning of term.

You will be able to collect your pack from the shop in reprographics at the beginning of term.

Are there any specific entry requirements?

A grade 5 is required in an Art subject or DISTINCTION at BTEC Level 2 in an Art or Design subject.

Entry will also be by interview where candidates will have the opportunity to show a portfolio of their work and ask questions with the Course Leader.

Entry may also be made via portfolio/interview, we would love to see examples of your work so make sure you have photographs on your phone that we can have a look at to help you choose the best creative course for you.


How do I Apply?

Application is by interview with the course team leader Peter Evans who will discuss the course, your interests in Art/design/craft and ask you questions about your work and what you want to achieve.

Careers Information


Do I have to do any writing?

Yes, you do. The study of art and design requires you to research and record your responses to the work of other artists and designers. There are a number of set written assignments and you will be required to annotate and evaluate your own work.

Do I get any help with this?

In addition to support from your lecturers there is academic support available to help you through these assignments.

What if I fail a unit?

Use of interim reviews and formative assessment should ensure students gain minimum grades.

What do I have to do before the start of the course?

Students need to complete a Summer task which will be used for their first initial assessment in September to establish their ability to work independently and to a brief.                                                          Students will be provided with a materials list for buying an art pack (if you can buy it from elsewhere, fine, but you need the pack to use in the first term).