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BA (Hons) Illustration

College
CAMBERWELL
Start date
September 2020
Course length
3 years
UCAS code
W222

BA Illustration at Camberwell College of Arts takes an innovative, experimental and critical approach to the broad practice of illustration.

Student work

Chronopolis - Daniel Clarke.

BA Illustration Stories

Course overview

You will be encouraged to develop an ambition for your own practice founded on subject knowledge and which challenges the position of the illustrator within commercial, social, political and cultural contexts.

What to expect

  • To explore the wider territory of the discipline while gaining an understanding of key illustration principles, themes and debates
  • To investigate ideas and issues through seminar discussions, presentations and written assignments
  • To test your ideas through evaluation of your practical work and writing
  • To define your way of working using skills and experiences developed through workshops, technical inductions, tutorials and seminars
  • To explore authorship and the reproduced image
  • To identify audiences for your work
  • To consider how you can make your work visible in a ‘real world’ context through end of year exhibitions
  • To examine your identity as an illustrator, whilst planning and realising practical projects
  • To have your ideas tested through evaluation of your practical and written work
  • To investigate ideas and issues through seminar discussions, presentations and writing
  • To have access to Camberwell's shared workshops that include printmaking, photography, film, moving image, digital, plastic, ceramics, wood and metalwork. View the Camberwell facilities

Work experience and opportunities

Our students gain first-hand experience through course projects with leading organisations and businesses. These have included Adidas, Channel 4, Dorling-Kindersley, The Guardian and MTV.

Students can also study abroad in the second year of their degree as part of the college's Erasmus scheme.

Mode of study

BA Illustration is offered in full-time mode. It is divided into 3 stages over 3 academic years. Each stage consists of 30 teaching weeks. You will be expected to commit an average of 40 hours per week to your course, including teaching hours and independent study.

Course units

A short description of each unit and what you can expect.

Year 1

Unit 1 - Introduction to Illustration

This unit is an introduction to your course, the college and the university.

Unit 2 - Exploratory practice ‘in discipline’

During this unit you will develop an understanding of the key methods and knowledge that define the subject of illustration.

  • A series of illustration project briefs
  • To look at composition, colour, character development, tone and pace 
  • Drawing as observation, analysis, description and ethnography
  • Object and conceptual making and development
  • Experimental practical exercises
  • Seminars, lectures, crits and tutorials
  • Technical and conceptual workshops
  • Written work
  • To keep an online personal archive
  • To design a document using material from your online personal archive

Unit 3 - Core Practice ‘in discipline’

Through continued experimentation and production, you will continue to develop an understanding of the foundational methods, knowledge and practice of illustration.

  • Lectures, seminars and discussions will explore the relationship between historical and contemporary critical debates within illustration
  • Practical illustration project briefs
  • Production of a personally defined practice-led project proposal that will form the basis for an ongoing personal project
  • Online personal archive
  • Workshops

Unit 4 - Expanded practice ‘in discipline’

This unit places emphasis on experimentation and creative risk taking in your practice. It will focus on your continued development and understanding of the key principles of the subject. It will also examine illustrations material and conceptual possibilities. 

  • To look at illustration in relation to text analysis and the articulation of narrative, tone and pace in sequential image making
  • To explore notions of authorship and the reproduced image
  • Written work
  • Online personal archive
  • To design a document using material from your online personal archive
  • Project presentation
  • Ongoing development of your practice-led project
  • Lectures, seminars, crits and tutorials 
  • Inductions to the workshops

Year 2

Unit 5 - Exploratory practice ‘as discipline’

Throughout this unit you will continue to consolidate the practical methods and principles of illustration explored through the previous stage of the course. It will focus on continuing to develop, investigate and refine the core skills in your practice. 

  • To engage with processes and conventions of distribution and reproduction
  • To work with a range of subject matter and content
  • To produce written work articulating your position as an illustrator
  • Workshops, lectures, seminars, tutorials and group discussions
  • Practical work for set projects  
  • Online personal archive
  • Practice-led project presentation 

Unit 6 - Collaborative and collective practices

This unit aims to introduce you to different ways in which collaborative working can focus and enhance your own creative strengths. This unit has 3 core purposes:  

  • To engage with fellow students with different practices and interests in a collaborative project
  • To engage with external audiences, participants or institutions to consider new contexts for your work
  • To develop your creative attributes to enable you to take on future challenges in a variety of contexts

Unit 7 - Core practice ‘as discipline’

This unit encourages you to continue to develop your skills, position and identity as an illustrator. The unit will help you identify an audience and consider how to make your work visible in a real-world context.

  • Methods of practical evaluation, participation, social, cultural and political engagement will be developed throughout the unit
  • To consider the impact and ethics of your work through your online personal archive
  • Practice-led project presentation 
  • Lectures and visiting practitioner talks 
  • Workshops, seminars, crits, tutorials 
  • Practical work for set projects 

Unit 8 - Expanded practice and points of departure ‘as discipline’

Through a series of practical illustration projects, you will apply methods of evaluation, participation, social, cultural and political engagement. You will take part in a series of workshops, seminars, lectures and discussions that will help you to identify a broad context for your practice. This unit will help you work out your individual programme of study for your third year.

  • Written work articulating and defining your position as an illustrator
  • Practical work for set projects 
  • Online personal archive 
  • Workshops, seminars, crits, presentations and tutorials 
  • Lectures and visiting practitioner talks 

Year 3

Unit 9 - Exploratory core practice ‘of discipline’

This unit is a coming together of your practical, professional and critical position as an illustrator. It will be highly self-directed. It will look at professional development and potential fields you might work within after graduation.

  • Presentation describing the progress of your individual programme of study
  • Written work
  • Practical work for set projects 
  • Online personal archive 
  • Workshops, seminars, group discussions, crits and tutorials
  • Lectures and visiting practitioner talks 

Unit 10 - Expanded core practice ‘of discipline’

In this unit you will work on a self-directed final project that integrates your conceptual and practical activity.

  • To produce a resolved body of work and portfolio
  • Online personal archive 
  • A designed and printed document using material from your online personal archive
  • Workshops, seminars, presentations, crits and tutorials 
  • Lectures and visiting practitioner talks
  • To present work in the college degree show

Optional Diploma between year 2 and 3

Between year 2 and 3 you can opt to undertake the Diploma in Professional Studies or the Diploma in Creative Computing.

Learning and teaching methods

  • Progressive Assessment model: a new and innovative approach to assessment with a focus on mutual dialogue between students and staff. 
  • Self-assessment 
  • Professional development 
  • Individual and group tutorials
  • Group projects 
  • Personal archive
  • Self-evaluation 
  • Peer assessment
  • Live projects

Assessment methods

  • Development file
  • Essays
  • Evaluative reports
  • Peer assessment
  • Practical work
  • Presentations
  • Proposals
  • Self-assessment
  • Tutorial records
  • Written assignments

How to apply

Opportunities for all

We are committed to making university education an achievable option for a wider range of people and to supporting all of our students in achieving their potential both during and after their courses.

We welcome applications from people with disabilities. If you have a disability (e.g. mobility difficulties, sensory impairments, medical or mental health conditions or Asperger’s syndrome) we strongly encourage you to contact us on disability@arts.ac.uk or +44 (0)20 7514 6156 so that we can plan the right support for you. All enquiries are treated confidentially. To find out more, visit our Disability & Dyslexia webpages.

Entry requirements

The standard minimum entry requirements for this course are one or a combination of the following qualifications:

  • Pass at Foundation Diploma in Art and Design (Level 3 or 4)
  • 2 A Levels at grade C or above
  • Merit, Pass, Pass (MPP) at BTEC Extended Diploma
  • Pass at UAL Extended Diploma
  • Access to Higher Education Diploma
  • Or equivalent EU/International qualifications, such as International Baccalaureate Diploma
  • And 3 GCSE passes at grade 4 or above (grade A*-C)

Entry to this course will also be determined by the quality of your application, looking primarily at your portfolio of work, personal statement and reference.

APEL - Accreditation of Prior (Experiential) Learning

Applicants who do not meet these course entry requirements may still be considered in exceptional cases. The course team will consider each application that demonstrates additional strengths and alternative evidence. This might, for example, be demonstrated by:

  • Related academic or work experience
  • The quality of the personal statement
  • A strong academic or other professional reference
  • A combination of these factors

Each application will be considered on its own merit but we cannot guarantee an offer in each case.

English language requirements

All classes are taught in English. If English isn't your first language you must provide evidence at enrolment of the following:

Selection criteria

We look for:

  • An ability to explore, articulate and develop ideas
  • An ability to research information and visual material to support your ideas
  • Your portfolio to demonstrate a range of appropriate skills and technical abilities
  • An ability to communicate your ideas visually, verbally and in writing
  • An ability to self-direct and evaluate your own work

Making your application

Portfolio advice

  • You should show evidence of research, the development of ideas and problem solving
  • Portfolios should include work that shows the application of imagery within a design and illustration context
  • It is important to include sketch books. These help us to see your working process and indicate your developing research interests and influences

Please remember:

  • The quality of the work is more important than the quantity
  • Where possible, large or 3D work should be photographed and scanned
  • To organise your work by project, with supporting work presented alongside final outcomes

You must apply through UCAS, where you’ll need the following information:

  • University code - U65
  • UCAS course code - W222

Application deadline

We recommend you apply by 15 January for equal consideration.

However, this course will consider applications after that date, subject to places being available.

Entry to Year 2 or Year 3:

If you have successfully completed 120 credits (year 1) or 240 credits (year 1 and 2) in the equivalent units or modules on a degree course at another institution and wish to continue your studies at Camberwell College of Arts, you can apply to transfer to year 2 or year 3 respectively. The Admissions Tutor will consider applicants for entry to year 2 and 3 on a case by case basis, subject to places being available on the course. You must apply through UCAS and indicate POE 2 for entry to year 2 or POE 3 for entry to year 3 on your application. Further information can be found in our UAL External Student Transfer Policy.

Deferred entry application:

This course will consider deferred entry applications.

What happens next

Communicating with you

After you’ve submitted your application, you’ll receive a confirmation email providing you with your login details for the UAL Portal. We’ll use this portal to contact you to request any additional information, including inviting you to upload documents or book an interview, so please check it regularly.

Initial application check

We check your application to see if you meet the standard entry requirements for the course. If you do, you’ll be invited to or asked to book onto a suitable date to attend an interview selection event.

Interview selection event

You will be expected to bring your portfolio, which will be reviewed by the academics conducting the event. Please be prepared to talk about your work, what inspires you and your influences. We may not discuss all of these topics at the event.

The event will also give you a chance to meet current students, take a tour of the college and see the facilities.

More details about your interview selection event will be emailed to you once you have chosen or been allocated your date.

Selection for Home/EU applicants happens in a variety of different ways:

  • In person at Camberwell College of Arts
  • By phone or Skype

If you choose phone or Skype, you will be sent an email requesting that you upload a digital portfolio using UAL’s online portfolio review system.

How we notify you of the outcome of your application

You will receive the final outcome of your application through UCAS track.

Please note that applicants for this course may be given an alternative offer. This decision will be based on our assessment of your creative and potential interests.

There are 3 ways international students can apply to an undergraduate course at Camberwell College of Arts:

If you are applying via UCAS you will need the following information:

You can only apply to the same course once per year whether you are applying via UCAS, UAL representative or using the UAL online application system. Any duplicate applications will be withdrawn. Read the UAL international application advice for further information on how to apply.

Application deadline

We recommend you apply by 15 January for equal consideration.

However, this course will consider applications after that date, subject to places being available.

Entry to Year 2 or Year 3:

If you have successfully completed 120 credits (year 1) or 240 credits (year 1 and 2) in the equivalent units or modules on a degree course at another institution and wish to continue your studies at Camberwell College of Arts, you can apply to transfer to year 2 or year 3 respectively. The Admissions Tutor will consider applicants for entry to year 2 and 3 on a case by case basis, subject to places being available on the course. You must apply through UCAS and indicate POE 2 for entry to year 2 or POE 3 for entry to year 3 on your application. Further information can be found in our UAL External Student Transfer Policy.

Deferred entry application:

This course will consider deferred entry applications.

What happens next

Communicating with you

After you’ve submitted your application, you’ll receive a confirmation email providing you with your login details for the UAL Portal. We’ll use this portal to contact you to request any additional information, including inviting you to upload documents or book an interview, so please check it regularly.

Immigration history check

Whether you’re applying online via UCAS, through a UAL representative or by direct application you will need to complete an Immigration History Check to establish whether you are eligible to study at UAL. If you don’t complete the check we won’t be able to proceed with your application.

Initial application check

We check your application to see if you meet the standard entry requirements for the course. If you do, you’ll be invited to or asked to book onto a suitable date to attend an interview selection event.

Interview selection event

You will be expected to bring your portfolio, which will be reviewed by the academics conducting the event. Please be prepared to talk about your work, what inspires you and your influences. We may not discuss all of these topics at the event.

More details about your interview selection event will be emailed to you once you have chosen or been allocated your date.

Selection for international applicants happens in a variety of different ways:

  • By phone or Skype
  • In your country, if your application was made through one of our official representatives
  • In person at our international office based at Chelsea College of Arts

If you choose phone or Skype, you will be sent an email requesting that you upload a digital portfolio using UAL’s online portfolio review system.

How we notify you of the outcome of your application

  • If you applied through UCAS you will receive the final outcome of of your application through UCAS track
  • If you applied directly or through an agent, we will notify you through the UAL portal

Please note that applicants for this course may be given an alternative offer. This decision will be based on our assessment of your creative and potential interests.

Study Abroad

Through the Study Abroad programme international students can apply to join an undergraduate course.

For information on how to apply visit the Study Abroad section.


Fees & Funding

Home / EU fee

£9,250 (2020/21).

Tuition fees may increase in future years for new and continuing students, in line with an inflationary amount determined by government. Please visit our undergraduate tuition fees page for more information.

International fee

£22,920 (2020/21).

Additional costs

In addition to tuition fees you are very likely to incur additional costs such as travel expenses and the cost of materials. Please read the information on our additional costs page.

Accommodation

Find out about the accommodation options available and how much they will cost.

Scholarships and awards

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