The Diploma in Art and Design - Foundation Studies course at Central Saint Martins is based at the Archway campus, which is where all studio teaching sessions, technical workshop access and additional study support sessions are delivered.
Foundation students have access to and are expected to use the library, learning zones, loan store, student centre, lecture theatres, digital print facilities and the Lethaby Gallery via the King's Cross campus.
This course is part of the Access and Progression to Higher Education Programme.
The Foundation Diplcourse at Central Saint Martins is based over two sites: Archway and Kings Cross. From September 2017 all studio teaching sessions and technical workshop access will be at the Archway site. Use of library, learning zones, lecture theatres and digital print facilities will continue to be via the Kings Cross campus.
This course is part of the Access to HE and Progression programme.
There are two modes of study:
- The diagnostic mode allows you to spend time within each of the four curriculum areas before specialisation. This mode is best suited to students who are not yet certain of a particular subject.
- The specialist mode is for students who are confident of their future direction. This mode allows you to apply directly to one of the four curriculum areas.
The four curriculum areas are:
Each curriculum area is sub-divided into pathways. Please see curriculum area pages for further information about the curriculum areas and their pathway options.
Whichever mode you choose, over the first 10 weeks (Part One of the course) you will rotate through a series of projects that will ask you to experiment with a range of materials and processes that support ideas development within art and design. After this initial period of investigation and experimentation you will be guided, through tutorials and assessment, to the specialist pathway that best suits your interests and abilities.
Fashion and Textiles Curriculum Area
Fashion and Textiles encompasses a broad range of activities and disciplines. These include fashion illustration; draping on the body; design development; investigation into research and an introduction to print, stitch and knit using our workshops. Our two different pathways are closely related, allowing students a range of options for developing skills in specific areas. We encourage students to develop their individual strengths and support them in creating a personal and creative portfolio. Students primarily progress onto BA courses in Fashion and Textiles.
Fashion design combines visual language communicated through images and structures for the body. We teach fashion design that is created within the cultural, social or political influences of a specific time. Fashion has the power to reveal, hide, extend, or define the identity of an individual or a group.
Our studio approach on Foundation is experimental use of sketchbooks to develop ideas, themes or concepts which will include illustrative imagery using drawing, painting, collage, photomontage and mixed media. We encourage ‘draping’ on the figure or stand and documentation through drawing and photography. Awareness of the importance of the ‘silhouette’ and sculptural form related to the body is important as well as the understanding the difference between ‘designing for fashion’ and simply ‘buying and wearing’ it.
Our applied processes and workshops include some access to print (at Archway) and stitch workshops (Kings Cross). This includes machine and hand stitch, print processes including heat transfer press. Electives in hand and machine knit, weave and use of digital media for design solutions. We explore the translation of 2D imagery into 3D structures for the body.
Fashion Groups one and two are divided alphabetically and share the same projects as the two Textiles Pathways throughout units 1-6 with varying outcomes.
Student Destinations: Higher education courses in Womenswear, Menswear, Fashion Print, Fashion Knit, Fashion Design and Marketing and Textiles Design.
Textile design combines traditional handmade skills with contemporary technology. This can be functional, decorative, symbolic, or conceptual and has varied use and context, for example: as design for industry, as art in a gallery, or as designer-maker crafts (categories which are continuously blending and cross referring).
Our studio approach on Foundation is experimental use of sketchbooks to develop ideas, themes or concepts which will include drawing, painting, collage, photomontage, mixed media, for both figurative and abstract imagery.
We look at colour, texture, surface and form through observed subject matter and tactile manipulation and experimental samples in stitch, print and knit relating to observed images.
Our applied processes and workshops include some access to print (at Archway) and stitch workshops (Kings Cross). This includes machine and hand stitch, print processes including heat transfer press. Electives in hand and machine knit, weave and use of digital media for design solutions.
Textiles Groups one and two are divided alphabetically and share the same projects as the two Fashion Pathways throughout units 1-6 with varying outcomes. Textiles can have certain crossovers with Fashion and can also be seen as an entirely separate study.
Student Destinations: Higher education courses in Textile Design, Surface Design, Textiles for Fashion
Textile BA Courses offer pathways which include combinations of Print, Knit, Weave, Stitch.
The Foundation Diploma in Art and Design runs for 32 weeks full time over one year and is divided into three parts.
Each part is made up of units and each unit has a credit value. Units are the basic building blocks of your course and can be described as a self-contained package of learning defined in terms of learning time. This includes taught time, independent study, access to resources, and assessment.
Each part is made up of 40 credits. Part One consists of 40 Level Three credits and Parts Two and Three consist of 40 Level Four credits each.
To progress to Part Two you're expected to complete the units of Part One successfully.
To progress to Part Three (i.e. Unit Seven) you're expected to complete all previous units successfully. To be awarded a Foundation Diploma you must accumulate 120 credits in total. This means you'll need to complete all units of the course in order to gain the Foundation Diploma.
You’re expected to attend Monday to Thursday 10.30am – 4.30pm, and occasionally on a Friday for workshop inductions and additional classes.
The Foundation Diploma in Art and Design is designed to enable you to learn through discovery and exploration by engaging with projects, lectures and study visits. The foundation course is essentially a transitional experience in art, design and communication, preparing you for a place in higher education or for employment.
The wide range of specialist options reflects the progression opportunities available at degree level within the college and the university. The foundation course's pathways allow you to build a subject-specific portfolio in readiness for degree course applications.
Part One - Learning Skills and Content
Through studio and workshop projects you'll be introduced to a range of materials and methods of working. You'll learn how to research and develop your ideas and how to evaluate and reflect on your progress.
Part Two - Development and Progression
The Foundation Diploma in Art and Design is designed to help you build a portfolio and to prepare you for interview to enter higher education and subsequent employment. Building on skills from Part One you'll integrate your research, ideas and methods of working to produce a body of work that allows you to analyse your interests and ambitions and to investigate directions to pursue.
Part Three - Project Proposal and Realisation
The focus of Part Three is on further development of your individuality and independence as you propose and realise your final major project integrating planning, research, ideas, methods, evaluation and reflection. Your project is displayed in the foundation exhibition - open to the public, family and friends.
Developing your skills
Throughout The Foundation Diploma in Art and Design you'll learn new skills to enable you to progress successfully. These skills, which are also appropriate to higher education and employment, include the use of machinery and materials, presentation skills for articulating your ideas to your peers or at interview, and presenting your work in a portfolio or at an exhibition. Most importantly you'll gain study skills in order to 'learn how to learn'. This kind of independent learning builds the self-motivation, commitment and initiative that allows you to develop your projects independently, guided by a supportive tutorial structure.
Guaranteed undergraduate offer
Foundation Diploma in Art and Design students who successfully complete the year will be guaranteed a place on an undergraduate course at UAL.
This means that as long as you pass, you will have the opportunity to continue your studies at one of the six colleges, the following year.
Which undergraduate course will I be offered a place on?
The offer will depend on your work and the interests you develop during your foundation year. Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee that you will be made an offer for a specific course of your choosing, but if you successfully complete the diploma, you’ll be offered a place on a relevant course at UAL.
How does it work?
To be guaranteed progression onto an undergraduate course, you must:
- Have made your application through The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS)
- Successfully pass the Foundation Diploma in Art and Design
- Be able to meet any other additional entry criteria for the undergraduate course you’re offered a place on.