course

Fine Art BA (Hons)

Key Facts

  • UCAS Code

    BA: W100
    BA with Foundation: W101

  • Level

    UndergraduateUG

  • Duration

    Full Time: 3 years
    Full Time Foundation: 4 years
    Part Time: 5 - 6 years

  • Starting

    September

  • BCC at A Level or,
    DMM at BTEC

  • Fees UK 24/25

    Full Time: £9,250
    Part Time: £1,540 per 20 credit module
    Integrated Foundation Year: £9,250

  • Fees International 24/25

    Full Time: £15,200
    Integrated Foundation Year: £15,200

  • Location

Get in touch


For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:

UK/EU Students enquiries

study@northampton.ac.uk
0300 303 2772

International Students enquiries

international@northampton.ac.uk
+44 (0)1604 893981

Overview


Our BA Fine Art degree gives you the chance to explore contemporary approaches to fine art across a range of disciplines, making use of our excellent resources for printmaking, sculpture, installation, photography, video and digital arts.

You will be part of a diverse group of students, each of whom bring their own unique experiences and interests to this Fine Art course, making our supportive studio environment a great place to find your own artistic voice.

In our first-year modules, you will gain experience and confidence with various media and concepts, and start to develop your own personal practice which you will then build upon over the next two years. Throughout your Fine Art degree, we will support your journey with tutorials, seminars, study visits and opportunities to participate in live projects, competitions and exhibitions.

Updated 29/05/2024

Highlights


  • Excellent studio spaces and high-quality teaching from practising artists.
  • Access to comprehensive specialist workshop resources with technical instruction and support.
  • Materials and equipment provided for all workshop activities.
  • A great range of national and international study trips, live projects and exhibition opportunities.
  • Research into the broader context of contemporary art practices and theoretical debates through our art theory modules and guest speaker programme.
  • A real focus on your future career, with employability modules in Year 2 and 3 of the course.
  • Guaranteed paid internship with the Northampton Employment Promise.
  • HP laptop and software included with this course for eligible students* (*see Eligibility criteria and Terms and Conditions)

Course Content


  • This BA Fine Art degree at UON has been designed to contribute towards achieving the following United Nations Sustainable Development Goals: SDG11: Sustainable Cities and Communities

    Throughout our Fine Art BA, you will benefit from spacious studios and well-equipped facilities, and tuition from practicing artists who publish and exhibit nationally and internationally. Your ideas will be nurtured and developed through a close relationship with our Fine Art team and technical demonstrators, and of course the diverse group of students you will work alongside in our studios.

    Year 1

    In the first year of your fine art degree, you will complete three modules each semester – a small drawing module (10 credits), the main art studio module (40 credits) and a small theory module (10 credits). The Year One art studio modules are based around project themes, each with a number of mini-projects, workshops and other activities within them. Through these projects you will be introduced to a wide range of materials and processes, but also to new concepts and ways of thinking about art – we look for risk-taking and bold experimentation. For the drawing modules you will complete several short projects and build a digital portfolio of work; we have a very broad and inclusive approach to drawing, and include Virtual Reality projects, sculptural work and digital drawing alongside more traditional approaches. Our theory modules are taught by the same team as your art studio modules, and have a real emphasis on the use of art theory by artists. You will be introduced to a range of theoretical concepts and contemporary examples, and will be supported to develop effective research, written and presentation skills.

    Year 2

    In your second year, you will again complete three modules each semester – a small employability module (10 credits), the main art studio module (40 credits) and a small theory module (10 credits). The main art studio modules support you as you develop your own thematic interests, technical expertise and conceptual understanding of your work. In effect, year two studio modules are all about ‘putting down roots’ into the subject and preparing you for a successful final year – the approaches you might take to your artwork are virtually endless, but we will support and challenge you throughout that development process. The employability modules include a visiting speaker programme which introduces you to a range of career paths, and through practical workshops you will build the skills necessary to succeed in the visual arts sector after you graduate. The theory modules build on your learning from year one, and help you develop the analytical skills necessary to use art history and art theory to develop your own artwork.

    Year 3

    Your third year really focuses your art practice as you build towards the final ‘Degree Show’, creating a coherent and ambitious body of artwork for assessment and public exhibition. This main 80 credit module is the heart of your third year, and is the culmination of three years of intensive art practice. Alongside the art studio module you can choose from a range of options to complete the Critical Study and Employability and Professional Practice modules (both 20 credits) – this can take the form of traditional written essays or more practical options such as curating an exhibition or undertaking a placement.

    Study Visits

    Study Visits are a key feature of the BA Fine Art course, and you will be only one hour from central London as well as other major art centres such as Birmingham and Nottingham.

    Our students have benefitted from international study visits to Paris, Venice, Barcelona, Berlin and New York as well as UK visits to spaces such as Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Henry Moore Institute, BALTIC, Nottingham Contemporary, the Liverpool Biennial, Folkstone Triennial and IKON Gallery in Birmingham. We are regular visitors to the Venice Biennale, the oldest and largest visual art festival in the world.

    Exhibition opportunities

    You will exhibit your work regularly throughout your studies, both in our studios and project space but also at other venues in the region. In recent years, UON Fine Art students have exhibited work at NN Contemporary (Northampton), MK Gallery (Milton Keynes) and nearby Lamport Hall and Delapre Abbey.

    Please note the modules shown here relate to the academic year 24/25. The modules relating to the academic year 25/26 will be available from June 2025.

      • Module code: ART1051
        Status: Compulsory
        Students will be introduced to the traditions of art studio practice, through a schedule of briefs, workshops and micro-projects that, collectively, offer an introduction to some of the materials, processes and theoretical approaches associated with fine art.
      • Module code: ART1052
        Status: Compulsory
        Through a series of structured activities students will develop confidence across an expanded range of analogue and digital contemporary fine art techniques and processes. A range of artist-led debates are introduced, with students forming more individual responses to set activities and beginning to build effective research and presentation skills.
      • Module code: ART2066
        Status: Compulsory
        The module encourages development of individual art practice, but also asks the student to explore how their artwork engages with audiences in a gallery context. Students are introduced to gallery curation, exhibition design and associated theories, and to related business models appropriate to their individual practice.
      • Module code: ART2067
        Status: Compulsory
        Students are encouraged to develop their individual art practice, but also to explore how their interests can be applied to new and alternative contexts for exhibiting artwork. Theories, exemplars and business models appropriate to a range of practices are introduced, alongside career paths within the wider arts sector.
      • Module code: ART3029
        Status: Compulsory
        The module consolidates the student?s creative and theoretical interests through an articulation of the student?s own practice within a critical framework, and a sustained, independent investigation and analysis of artists and conceptual positions within the field of Fine Art that are relevant to the individual student.
      • Module code: ART3030
        Status: Compulsory
        This module enables students to develop their working knowledge of the creative and cultural industries, provides them with a range of skills and strategies to prepare themselves for the external world, and requires the student to take practical actions to progress their career within the arts sector or related field.
      • Module code: ART4015
        Status: Compulsory
        he module consolidates creative and theoretical interests through an exhibited body of work that demonstrates a refined approach to art practice, consideration of appropriate exhibition format and audience, and the integration of relevant theory and debates. The exhibition is supported by `statements of practice? tailored to a range of audiences.
  • A typical offer to study Fine Art at the University of Northampton would be:

    • BCC at A Level or,
    • DMM at BTEC/Cambridge Technical or,
    • Pass (C and above) at T Level

    In addition, we expect applicants to have studied art or a relevant subject at A Level, BTEC or equivalent. We also accept Foundation Diplomas in Art and Design.

    Applicants are interviewed and are requested to provide a portfolio of their own work in Art and Design. International students may submit their portfolio electronically. If you have a relevant HND or Foundation Degree with a suitable profile of achievement you may be admitted onto year two or three of this course.

    We welcome applications from students with a mix of A levels and BTEC/Cambridge Technical qualifications.

    For more information on how to make an application, please visit our How to Apply page.

    If you are an International student and would like information on making an application, please see our How to Apply page.

    Integrated Foundation Year Entry Requirements

    Admission to this foundation programme is normally :

    • DEE at A Level or,
    • MPP at BTEC or,
    • Pass (D or E) at T Level

    However, we would also like to hear from you if you have professional or industry experience instead, a range of other qualifications or self-developed subject knowledge that relates to the programme you wish to study.

    If you are considering a change in career or if you are returning to education after time away, then we suggest you contact Admissions to book an advisory interview with the course leader so we can explore how best to support your study ambitions.

    Interview

    Once your application has been reviewed, you may be invited to attend an interview with us.

    Prior to your interview you will be asked to send in a digital portfolio which includes 10-20 examples of your best work. Pieces of work could include examples of painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture/3D, photography, digital painting/drawing/animation. We would also like to see some of your sketchbook work, so remember to include a few of your best pages. Not all the examples in your digital portfolio need to be completed pieces, so you can include works in progress – we’re looking to see your ideas and experimentation as well as your finished work.

    Your interview will be with a member of the programme team and you’ll go over your portfolio with them. They’ll ask you some questions around your work and your interest in the course. This is also a great opportunity for you to ask them any questions you may have about the course.

    We hold our Fine Art interviews online and it will take around 45 minutes.

    English Language Requirements

    All International and EU students applying for a course with us must meet the following minimum English language requirements:

    • IELTS 6.0 (or equivalent) with a minimum of 5.5 in all bands
      for study at undergraduate level.

    For information regarding English language requirements at the University, please see our IELTS page.

  • 2024/25 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 24/25 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

    • UK – Full Time: £9,250
    • UK – Part Time: £1,540 per 20 credit module
    • UK – Integrated Foundation Year: £9,250
    • International – Full Time: £15,200
    • International – Integrated Foundation Year: £15,200
    Additional Costs

    All materials and equipment that you need for workshops and Yr1 projects will be provided, and a supply of basic art materials is also available to enable you to experiment with a range of media and techniques. As your personal art practice develops, you can also purchase a range of competitively priced art materials from the University art shop run by our Student Union. Costs for study visits vary but are always competitive, with UK trips would typically costing £10-50 and overseas trips normally in the region of £300-450.

    2023/24 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 23/24 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

    • UK – Full Time: £9,250
    • UK – Part Time: £1,540 per 20 credit module
    • UK – Integrated Foundation Year: £9,250
    • International – Full Time: £14,750
    • International – Integrated Foundation Year: £14,750
    Additional Costs

    All materials and equipment that you need for workshops and Yr1 projects will be provided, and a supply of basic art materials is also available to enable you to experiment with a range of media and techniques. As your personal art practice develops, you can also purchase a range of competitively priced art materials from the University art shop run by our Student Union. Costs for study visits vary but are always competitive, with UK trips would typically costing £10-50 and overseas trips normally in the region of £300-450.

     

    For information on the scholarships available to you, please see our scholarships page.

    For more information about possible funding options, please visit our Fees and Funding pages.

  • If you join this full time Fine Art degree at Northampton, you will receive a laptop when your course begins.* The laptops are built to a bespoke custom specification ideal for use in the seminar room, collaborative group work or studying at home. In addition to the Office365 (including Word, Powerpoint and Excel) which all University of Northampton students have full access to, students enrolled on our BA Fine Art degree can also access Adobe Creative Suite software including Photoshop, Premiere, InDesign and Illustrator. At the University of Northampton, all materials and equipment that you need for workshops and Yr1 projects will be provided, and a supply of basic art materials is also available to enable you to experiment with a range of media and techniques.

    Whatever your ambitions, we’re here to help you to achieve them. We’ll support you to identify the skills you’re learning during your course, find your strengths and secure practical experience so that when it comes to applying for jobs or further study you’ll feel confident in standing out from the crowd. We’ve created the Northampton Employment Promise because we are so confident that if you focus on your studies and complete one of our awards you’ll be highly employable by the time you graduate. Putting you in a great position to secure employment or continue your studies.

    To check out the full list of perks, visit our Student Perks page or dedicated International Perks page.

    *UK fee payers only (see Terms and Conditions for further details).

  • The Integrated Foundation Year (IFY) offers a new and exciting route into studying for a degree, attracting ambitious and driven students who are willing to learn and advance.

    If you have non-standard qualifications or do not quite meet the admissions requirements, we can offer you a fantastic opportunity to study a four year programme which includes an Integrated Foundation Year. The Integrated Foundation Year will help you develop the theoretical/practical and academic skills you need, in order to successfully progress to the full award.

    Our four-year courses will enable you to successfully follow the degree pathway of your choice while gaining essential study skills. The foundation year of your chosen degree will be studied on a full-time basis and is aimed at supporting the transition to higher education. Years two, three and four are then studied as a standard degree programme.

  • If you have any questions about studying BA Fine Art at the University of Northampton, they will usually be answered by attending one of our Open Days; but if you can’t attend an Open Day or have any other questions, please email the Programme Leader Richard Hollinshead who will be happy to help.

Staff


Careers and Employability


Employability is central to our Fine Art degree, with specialist modules in your second and third years of study that prepare our students for the next steps in their careers. Our students benefit from guest speakers who introduce a range of career options including freelance artist, curator, art therapist, art teacher, gallerist and other areas of arts management. Many of our students also go onto master’s study, including our own MA Fine Art course.

Master’s Opportunities

Our master’s courses are a great way to enhance the skills you have already learnt. Benefit from our 20% alumni discount on master’s fees to give you a CV that will catch the eye of employers.

Facilities and special features


  • Your own personal studio space
  • Bookable project space for testing and exhibiting your work
  • Printmaking Workshop, including screenprinting and intaglio processes
  • 3D Workshops, including casting, fabrication and lasercutting
  • Photographic studios and darkroom
  • Canvas prep-room
  • Mac Suite with Adobe Creative Suite software
  • Negotiable access to other specialist workshops (for example, fashion, greenscreen studios etc)
  • Audio-Visual equipment loan centre

Onsite printmaking workshop


Our onsite printmaking workshop can enhance the creative practices of students on a variety of courses

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