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Foundation Diploma in Art and Design Level 3 / 4

Programme Description

The Foundation Diploma is a one-year, intensive course designed to provide learners with a thorough and comprehensive experience of art, craft, design and media. This will enable them to make informed choices of their career progression to Higher Education and / or employment. The qualification is focused on developing creativity, understanding of materials and techniques, the fundamental principles of art and the importance of contextual research. It aims to enable students to develop a sound working discipline through regular and extensive practice and is suitable for mature students (17 and above) wanting to expand their abilities and understanding of art.

At a Glance

  Full Time

  1 Year

  Aberystwyth Campus

Programme Features

Tutors on the Foundation course are all practising artists with long exhibition and teaching histories and students engage in workshops with visiting artists from many disciplines. Gallery visits and talks compliment the intensive programme of contextual studies, enabling students to understand their work within the context of professional practice. The purpose-built large art studios allow for life drawing classes as well as individualised spaces to enable the development of specialist activities. During the programme students develop digital skills and have access to excellent, mac-based computers and adobe software, as well as lighting studios and traditional darkroom facilities.


Programme Content

The course is in three stages; Experimentation, Specialisation and Exhibition. Initially students are encouraged to explore materials and ways of working in a highly experimental way, fostering individual curiosity and developing conceptual understanding of art. From this base students begin to develop a specialisation within a particular discipline of art practice, be it Design, Fine Art, Photography etc, which leads to an exhibition of work in Aberystwyth Arts Centre.

Progression & Employment

Students progress from the Foundation to a range of degree courses at universities around the UK. These include courses at BA level in disciplines such as Fine Art, Photography, Graphics, Illustration, Architecture and Fashion Communication. Alternative progression routes include self-employment and working in various creative industries. The one-to one tutorial system enables focused attention to be placed on individuals’ progression beyond the course.

Method of Assessment

There are designated assessment points throughout the year after each stage is completed when coursework is assessed and internally verified against the unit grading criteria. At the end of the course a moderator from another art college visits, agrees grades with tutors and meets the students.

Entry Requirements

Level 3 Qualification (preferably Art related) and 5 GCSEs grade A*-C or equivalent , which includes either English Language or Welsh (1st Language) and Maths. Mature learners without qualifications may be accepted subject to successful interview and presentation of artwork

Additional Costs

There is a £60 fee for materials.

All learners are required to pay an administration fee of £25.00 prior to enrolment.

You will need to provide your own stationary, and may also incur costs if the department arranges educational visits