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Foundation Diploma in Art and Design at Arts University Bournemouth

Course description

This course gives you an excellent transition between A-Level and more specialised degree courses by allowing you to explore a wide range of disciplines.

Giving you time to learn and experiment in a specialist environment, the course allows you to make an informed decision about which course to pursue at Higher Education level. The course gives you a broad foundation across a wide range of disciplines in art, design and media, before you explore an area that interests you in much greater detail.

The course is geared towards the preparation of a portfolio of work to support your application to an advanced course. Throughout the course your practical studio work will be supported by a programme of contextual studies in art and design. This course demands a high degree of discipline and self-motivation.

Course content

During the first stage you will explore broad concepts and assignments, allowing you to diagnose which methodology – Art, Design or Media – you are most comfortable with. You will also gain an insight into the range of options available to you for Stage 2. Encouraging risk taking is at the core of the programme.

The structure of this course has seven ‘pathways’ which you may choose from from mid November.  These will give you a thorough insight into what it will be like to study within a specialist arts programme.

The available pathways are:

  • Graphic Design
  • 3D (Art, Craft, Design)
  • Costume, Fashion & Textiles
  • Photography
  • Fine Art
  • Film and Animation
  • Illustration

At the start of the pathway stage there will be presentations from practitioners and course tutors; these will give you further information about your options following completion of the course and enable you to make an informed choice about which specialist course to pursue.

After this, an increasing level of independence and self-discovery is encouraged as you pursue your pathway choice.

The final stage involves a self-initiated project before final assessment.

Entry requirements

  • Five GCSE passes at grade C or above (which must include Art/Design/Media subjects plus Maths and English),
  • Plus two GCE A-Level or vocational A level passes, usually at grade C or above
  • (One of which must be in a relevant subject)
  • Normal entry to a Foundation Diploma follows two years of sixth form study or equivalent
  • Other relevant and equivalent qualifications are considered on an individual basis.


Assessment is based on presentation of project work and takes place on completion of each stage of the course. Assessments are used to provide guidance on your progress and potential in areas of specialist study. The final major project is graded as pass, merit or distinction.

Financial information

Whether you pay tuition and exam registration fees will depend upon your age. You will be required to pay a small annual course material fee to cover the cost of the supplies you will use throughout the year.

You will not have to pay Tuition Fees if you are under 19 on 1st September of the year that your course commences.

For new students over 19, but under 24, the fee for courses commencing in 2013 will be £2000 (full-time) and £850 (part-time) per annum.

For new students over 24 the fee per annum for courses commencing in 2013 will be:

Foundation Diploma – £5,400 (full-time) and £2,700 (part-time)
Extended Diploma Art & Design – £4,200 (full-time)

From 1st April 2013, new students aged 24 and over are able to apply for a loan to fund these fees and there are no upfront tuition fees to pay for these students. This could be funded by Advanced Learning Loans, information can be found on the GOV.UK website.

You will have to pay Tuition Fees if you are an international student. OurInternational Fees page will provide you with specific details.

Future opportunities

The course is geared towards the preparation of a portfolio of work to support your application to a degree course. 

Many students choose to stay at AUB and progress to a degree course.

Further information

If you have any questions about the course, entry requirements please contact:


Tel: +44 1202 363228

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Arts University Bournemouth directly.

Last updated date: 20 May 2014
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Key information


  • More information
    • Arts University Bournemouth (formerly The Arts University College at Bournemouth,AUB), established in 1885 as a specialist institution, is now a leading University offering high quality specialist education in art, design, media and performance across the creative industries.

      AUB is one of only fifteen higher education institutions in the UK devoted solely to the study of art, design and media. The University has been providing specialist education for over a century and enjoys a strong reputation, both nationally and internationally.