Find your perfect course

Find the courses that are right for you

Help and Advice


Art and Design (Pre BA) Level 3 Foundation Diploma

'In the foundation art and design programme students quickly become independent learners with the support of their teachers and gain immensely from the ability to draw on the experiences of their peers. This helps them to develop confidence and team-building skills' 2016 Ofsted Report on RuTC adult provision


The Foundation Diploma in Art & Design is a pivotal qualification which provides a transition from general education to specialist art and design education. As part of the course, students will be encouraged to become more experimental and risk-taking in their approach and develop their thinking and idea generation strategies.


A key goal of the course is to enable students to make an informed decision about whether they wish to progress to higher education in Art & Design, study a degree in a separate field or prepare them for work/apprenticeships.


If you are under 19 years of age, the course will be free of charge. If you are aged 19+, the below fee applies but you will likely be eligible for an Advanced Learner Loan


Please click here for the Art and Design Foundation Diploma application form

Exam Board: University of the Arts London (UAL)



All students (16-18 year olds and 19+) on level 3 vocational and academic programmes will study two qualifications over the duration of their two-year course.


An example of this is BTEC students will study for a 90 credit qualification in the 1st year. Upon successful completion, they will be able to progress to the 2nd year and study a diploma/extended diploma qualification.


A level students will study AS Level in their first year and upon successful achievement will progress through to the full A Level in their second year.


UK and EU students aged 19 or over on 31st August directly preceding their academic year will normally be required to pay tuition fees for that year of study. Advanced Learner Loans may be available for students studying at Level 3.


Students who are 19+ years old with Education Health and Care Plans (EHCP) issued by the Local Authority are not required to pay course fees (ie tuition fees are free). Students will be required to provide a final copy of their EHCP provided by the LA as evidence.

  • Course details, fees and dates

    Course Code JA0AG / 10001

    Start Date Monday 11 Sep 2017

    How long is the course? 35 weeks

    What time does the course start? 9:00AM

    What time does the course end? 5:00PM

    When does the course run? 4 days per week

    How much does the course cost? All Fees £3,970

    Are concessions available? Yes

  • What will I study and learn?

    The first part of the course is structured so you experience a diverse range of approaches, concepts, media and techniques related to the following pathways before choosing your specialist area:

    • Art Pathway: Fine art, photography, film
    • Communications Pathway: Graphic design, illustration, animation, visual effects
    • Design Pathway: Fashion, fashion styling, textiles, 3D object design, 3D spatial design, including architecture, interior and theatre design, crafts

    When you have chosen your pathway you will start to create personal art and design work in an experimental and investigatory way, using high levels of evaluation, research and contextualisation to underpin the development of your work. You will have access to specialist workshops in printmaking, ceramics and 3D design to enable you to develop your practical skills. During the course, you will also take part in a number of exhibitions and presentation scenarios to prepare you for higher education interviews or employment. Teaching staff will be available for feedback and guidance at all times and you will also be assigned a personal tutor from the teaching team who will oversee your progress.

  • How is the course assessed?

    The course is assessed through project-based activities. Students must pass all the level 3 units 1-6 before going on to the final level 4 unit, an externally-moderated major project. Your overall course grade - Pass, Merit or Distinction - will be the mark you receive for this final major project (FMP).

  • What skills will I need for the course?
    • An active interest in visual communication and culture
    • An inquisitive way of thinking
    • A willingness to experiment, explore materials and processes
    • A desire to take ideas beyond the 'obvious'
  • What formal entry requirements will I need?

    You will need at least one of the following:

    One A Level supported by 3 GCSE grades A*-C with a reasonable standard of English and Maths must be in evidence OR BTEC National Diploma/Level 3 Extended Diploma in a creative subject


    A combination of vocational qualifications and A Levels supported by appropriate previous accredited achievement. Students will need to present a portfolio at interview which demonstrates their visual experiences.

    Please note that places for mature students are based on an assessment of their creative abilities and not necessarily on academic qualifications. Students from other specialist pathways who wish to re-route themselves can also apply with a limited portfolio; individual support will be given before the student enters the course. All other students will need to present a portfolio at interview which demonstrates their visual experiences.

  • What could the course lead to in higher education or careers?

    The UALAB foundation diploma in art and design is intended for those students wishing to progress to a higher education course in art and design or associated studies. However students who wish to use the qualification as preparation for employment or an apprenticeship, or to extend their outlook and skills prior to studying in another field at higher education level are also encouraged to apply.

  • Are there any costs involved?

    There are no course fees or exam registration fees payable for UK and EU students who are under 19 years of age on 31 August 2017. However all students must pay the studio fee of £100. Students should expect to cover additional costs for study visits and independent research days.

    If you are aged 19+, the below fee applies but you will likely be eligible for an Advanced Learner Loan.

To Apply or Enquire

If you are interested in applying please fill out an application form. If you require more information please do not hesitate in sending us your queries via our enquiry form. We will endeavour to get back to you as soon as possible.

subject tasters at Richmond upon thames college experience inside the classroom London 2016 2017 1

Find your course

What our students say

What Our Students Say 2017 Art and Design Female

Blaise Baynes Art Des Female 500px

access to HE application form for richmond upon thames College business art health studies social care

Local offer of additional learning support at a top ofsted good college in south west london 1

Latest News