Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures

School of Design


I found the BA Art and Design course really was a programme designed to develop students’ knowledge in theoretical studies, as well as a range of art and design skills. In my three years of study, I obtained a very wide range of understanding and skills from researching into an art subject to promotion, from a written investigation to public presentations.

BA Art and Design


This unique degree combines theoretical, design and studio art modules to develop your creative potential in an intellectually stimulating environment.

You’ll develop practical, creative and critical techniques, as well as producing and analysing sophisticated pieces of art and design. You’ll learn to be both creative and analytical – a very attractive combination to employers – and exhibit your work in every year.

Core modules will introduce and challenge key issues in art and design. You could work in media such as drawing, painting, sculpture, photography, digital media, printmaking, video and installation, which will be introduced in studio practice modules and workshops.

You’ll be supported by expert tutors, who are all practitioners or theorists with national or international profiles, in a School of Design that spans the arts and sciences. This means we can also offer a wide-ranging choice of modules, allowing you to express your ideas and develop your full potential.

The School of Design cuts across the arts and sciences and that makes it a fantastic environment for creativity. You’ll learn in well-lit studios and well-equipped workshops with specialist facilities for painting, printmaking, sculpture and digital media. There are PC and Mac computer suites with up to date software.

In your first year you’ll pursue a range of art and design practices, exploring processes and ideas in your studio practice. You’ll also be introduced to key issues in the history, culture and technologies informing art and design to help you put your practice into context.

The following year will allow you to build on this understanding: you’ll develop an awareness of professional standards in art and design and begin to put together a sustained body of work in your practice, engaging with the context you’ve gained from your academic studies. You’ll also develop your knowledge of research methods and marketing.

All of this prepares you for your final year, in which you have the opportunity to apply all that you have learned as you work towards your final degree exhibition. You’ll also demonstrate the skills of research and critical thinking you’ve gained as you write and research a dissertation on a topic of your choice.

Course structure

These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

Year 1

Compulsory modules

  • Fundamentals of Imaging 20 credits
  • Studio Practice 1A 20 credits
  • Studio Practice 1B 20 credits
  • Material Culture and Mass Consumption 20 credits
  • Design History: 1900 to the Present day 10 credits

Optional modules

  • Green Design and Sustainability 10 credits
  • Introduction to Photography (Digital) 10 credits
  • Patterns and Culture 10 credits
  • Colour and the Design Process 10 credits
  • Fashion Brand Analysis 10 credits
  • Drawing 1A 10 credits
  • Drawing 1B 10 credits
  • Technologies for Art and Design 10 credits

Year 2

Compulsory modules

  • Research Methods 1: Finding and Using Research Resources 10 credits
  • Research Methods 2: Research, Writing and Dissertation 10 credits
  • Marketing Creativity and Innovation 20 credits
  • Studio Practice 2A 20 credits
  • Studio Practice 2B 20 credits

Optional modules

  • New Materialism: Science and Technology Meet Art, Craft and Design 10 credits
  • Radical Design 20 credits
  • Video Editing 10 credits
  • Contemporary Digital Media 10 credits
  • Illustration 10 credits
  • Art, Craft and Design Now: an international overview of contemporary practice 10 credits
  • Contemporary Art and Memory 10 credits
  • Photography (Digital) 10 credits
  • Eco-Design: Understanding Design's Role in Global Ecology 10 credits

Year 3

Compulsory modules

  • Studio Practice 3A 30 credits
  • Studio Practice 3B 30 credits
  • Independent Study Dissertation 40 credits

Optional modules

  • Style, Place and Popular Culture 20 credits
  • Contemporary Moving Image 20 credits
  • Landscape, Place and Environment in Contemporary Art 20 credits
  • Time and the Image in Contemporary Art 20 credits
  • Fashion Styling and Photography 20 credits
  • Collaborative Marketing and Promotion 20 credits
  • Information Design 20 credits

For more information on typical modules, read Art and Design BA in the course catalogue

Broadening your academic horizons

At Leeds we want you to benefit from the depth and breadth of the University's expertise, to prepare you for success in an ever-changing and challenging world. This course gives you the opportunity to broaden your learning by studying discovery modules. Find out more on the Broadening webpages.

Learning and teaching

Depending on the modules you choose to study, learning and teaching can take a variety of forms, however, both theoretical and studio modules combine lectures, seminars and tutorials. There is also technical support available in our workshops and the University Library offers comprehensive training programmes to support your academic learning. Independent study is an important part of the mix, as you’ll spend much of your time in the studios and libraries– but help is on hand from our tutors and technical staff.


Much of your degree will be assessed through submission of coursework; this might be through a portfolio of studio work or through essays, and there are some written exams depending on your choice of modules. Each project you complete will test your critical and creative abilities and ensure you have the technical skills to implement your ideas.

Entry requirements

A-level: ABB including an art or design-related subject and excluding General Studies and Critical Thinking.

If you don’t have an art or design-related subject, we may also consider your application based on a high grade at GCSE in Art/Design and a portfolio of recent and relevant work.

Alternate Qualifications

Access to HE Diploma

Pass: 60 credits including 45 at level 3, with grades specified for individual subjects.


DDM in Art/Design

Cambridge Pre-U

D3, M2, M2 including art or design.

International Baccalaureate

34 overall (16 higher, with 5 or 6 in art/visual art/design)

Irish Highers (Leaving Certificate)

(Leaving Certificate): AABBBB including art or design

Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers

AABBBB OR AAABB (B at advanced level) OR AABBB (BB at advanced level) including an art or design subject.

Other Qualifications

Art Foundation course: We welcome Art Foundation course students. However, the qualification is not a requirement for entry and doesn’t usually count towards entry requirements, which are based on A-levels and equivalent qualifications. In exceptional cases, we may make you an offer conditional on achieving an Art Foundation qualification: we may consider your application if you’re taking a validated Art Foundation course and have ABB or above at A-level not including Art or Design.
If you’re taking the EPQ, we may make you an alternative offer in addition to the standard offer. In this case that would be BBB, plus EPQ grade A.

Read more about UK and Republic of Ireland accepted qualifications or contact the Schools Undergraduate Admissions Team.

Alternative entry

Were committed to identifying the best possible applicants, regardless of personal circumstances or background.

Access to Leeds is an alternative admissions scheme which accepts applications from individuals who might be from low income households, in the first generation of their immediate family to apply to higher education, or have had their studies disrupted.

Find out more about Access to Leeds and alternative admissions.


We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications. For more information, contact the School of Design Undergraduate Admissions team.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.0 overall, with no less than 5.5 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

Improve your English

If you're an international student and you don't meet the English language requirements for this programme, you may be able to study our undergraduate pre-sessional English course, to help improve your English language level.

How to apply

Apply to this course through UCAS. The institution code for the University of Leeds is L23. Check the deadline for applications on the UCAS website.

International students apply through UCAS in the same way as UK/EU students. Our network of international representatives can help you with your application. If you’re unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

Documents and information you’ll need

If you don’t have an A-level in a related art or design subject, you’ll need to submit a portfolio of recent and relevant art/design work. Please email at least six images of recent work to texug@leeds.ac.uk at the time of your application to UCAS – the email subject line should include your name and UCAS ID number.

Admissions policy

Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures Undergraduate Admissions Policy 2019


UK/EU: See fees section below

International: £19,750 (per year)

For UK and non-UK EU full-time students starting in 2018, the fee for 2018/19 will be £9,250. 

For UK and non-UK EU full-time students starting in 2019, the fee for 2019/20 will be £9,250. 

The fee may increase in future years of your course in line with inflation, and as permitted by law. For example, the increase of 2.8% in 2017/18 was based on the government’s forecast for the RPI-X measure of inflation.

The UK government has confirmed that non-UK EU students starting in the 2019/20 academic year will have home fee status and be eligible for UK government student loans. The UK government has not confirmed the situation for future years, so keep checking our website for updates.

If you take a study abroad or work placement year, youll pay a reduced tuition fee during this period. For more information, see Study abroad and work placement tuition fees and loans.

Read more about paying fees and charges.

Additional cost information

There may be additional costs related to your course or programme of study, or related to being a student at the University of Leeds. Read more about additional costs

Scholarships and financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There is help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government. Find out more in our Undergraduate funding overview.

Career opportunities

A degree in Art and Design equips you with a wide range of skills. Obviously, skills developed through studio practice in a range of different media are vital, but because our degree incorporates a rigorous academic and theoretical framework you’ll also develop important transferable skills. You’ll develop sound professional awareness and be able to research different topics independently, then critically think about these and draw your own conclusions. We encourage you to be self-motivated and capable of explaining and defending your point of view. All of these qualities are valuable to employers.

As a result graduates have pursued a wide range of careers. Many continue with their own practice as either artists or designers, and a selection of exhibitions by recent graduates includes the London Original Print Fair – Royal Academy of Art, Baltic Gallery, Jerwood Drawing Prize, Saatchi’s New Sensations, Arts at Trinity Leeds and Art in Unusual Places, Leeds.

Others have gone into careers related to art and design in a variety of roles including art gallery manager, fabricator, illustrator, editorial assistant, graphic designer, journalist, theatre prop designer, lecturer, learning support worker, artist in residence and study centre assistant. Graduates have worked in Damien Hirst’s studio and assisted artists like Tracey Emin, Gillian Ayres and Ian Davenport.

Some graduates have decided to move onto postgraduate studies in disciplines such as fine art, advertising and architecture, illustration, set or furniture design, museum studies and curating while others have entered teacher training. Yet more go into completely different careers in accounting, law, marketing, journalism and retail.

Careers support

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. Thats one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.

Placement opportunities

Study abroad

On this course you have the opportunity to apply to spend time abroad, usually as an extra academic year. The University has partnerships with more than 400 universities worldwide and popular destinations for our students include Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Africa and Latin America. 

Find out more at the Study Abroad website.

Work placements

Practical work experience can help you decide on your career and improve your employability. On this course you have the option to apply to take a placement year module with organisations across the public, private and voluntary sectors in the UK, or overseas.

Find out more about work experience on the Careers website.

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