BA (Hons) Architecture

BA (Hons) Architecture

Institution code: N39
Course 3 Year UCAS code: K100
Course 4 Year UCAS code: K101
Course length: 3 or 4 year options

Norwich University of the Arts BA (Hons) Architecture is currently prescribed by the Architects Registration Board (ARB), subject to periodic review, for the purposes of entry onto the United Kingdom Register of Architects. The prescription of this qualification will be due for renewal by 27 November 2025 as part of the review cycle.

Accredited by:


You have the opportunity to study architecture in an art school environment at NUA, developing professional skills in a creative community where improving the world around us through innovative and responsible design is our primary focus.

A distinctive combination of imagination and exploration, research and critical evaluation will be at the centre of your approach to the built environment.

You will acquire skills in technical aspects of spatial design using a variety of traditional and contemporary techniques, from drawing and model-making to 3D digital design.

Purposeful design

We value creativity and user-focused, purposeful architectural design. We’ll challenge your preconceptions about the built environment. You’ll explore how people inhabit and use space and the importance of users and communities in the design process. The starting point is understanding people, proportions and how humans use spaces.

You’ll then move into increasingly complex design projects based on actual sites – developing new ways of thinking that will guide your response to locations and client briefs. 

Awards and accolades

Recent graduates have been selected for RIBA East Awards and the TRADA University Challenge.

Insight from professional architects

Our close links to the profession will give you an opportunity to meet and learn from our regional partners, including:

Field trips and site visits will help you develop your observational and design skills in a mix of cultural contexts.

Graduates work in a broad range of careers including

  • Architect
  • Architectural Assistant
  • Designer
  • Project Manager
  • Site Manager
  • Surveyor
  • Architectural Technician
  • Consultant
  • CAD Renderer
  • Product Designer
  • Town Planner
  • Architectural Historian Conservationist
  • Environmental Consultant Architectural Curator
  • Model Maker
  • Landscape Designer
  • Construction Journalist

You’ll also get specialist creative careers advice from our team in the Ideas FactoryNUA to help support you as you plan your career.

All courses run as a blend of on-campus and digital teaching and learning, and follow current UK government safety advice. Applicants and students will be notified directly if any changes need to be made.

Course content

  • Year 1
  • Explore the fundamentals of design and construction utilising a variety of drawing, photographic and modelling techniques
  • Examine the cultural contexts of historical and contemporary architecture using the local environment as a rich source of research
  • Integrate structural, environmental and material considerations into your design strategies
  • Establish a solid grounding in research techniques as a basis for your practice.
  • Year 2
  • Develop and refine your propositions through increasingly complex design briefs
  • Study user needs in relation to the aesthetic and technical requirements of a built environment
  • Explore structural and environmental design considerations
  • Investigate a range of research, critical and conceptual tools for project development and planning
  • Examine the social context of architecture, drawing on theories from other disciplines such as philosophy, cultural geography and fine arts.
  • Year 3
  • Undertake complex analyses of specific urban environments to formulate proposals for regeneration and development
  • Apply your creative vision and applied knowledge to a large scale architectural proposal and Research Report
  • Consolidate your work into a collaborative visual display and comprehensive portfolio as a basis for representing and promoting your practice.
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Typical UK offers

Candidates should have achieved GCSE passes at Grade 4/C or above in English, Maths and a Science subject.

A / AS Levels – GCE
3 A-level qualifications at grades BBB. Where candidates are not taking 3 A-levels, NUA will consider combinations of A-level/AS-level and other Level 3 qualifications.

BTEC Extended Diploma (QCF or RQF)
Distinction, Merit in an art, design or media related subject

BTEC Diploma (QCF or RQF)
Distinction*, Distinction* in an art, design or media related subject

UAL Extended Diploma

UAL Level 3 Foundation Diploma in Art and Design

UAL Level 4 Foundation Diploma in Art and Design

Foundation Diploma in Art and Design

Access to Higher Education Diploma (Art and Design)

International Baccalaureate Diploma
A minimum of 27 points

NUA welcomes applicants of all ages from all backgrounds. Your application will be primarily assessed through your portfolio, responses to questions asked and personal statement, so even if you have no formal qualifications or do not meet our typical offers it can still be worth applying.

If you are studying at the time of your application and your application is successful it is likely that you will receive a conditional offer.

If the qualification that you are studying is not shown, do not worry as we are able to accept other pre-entry qualifications as well as combinations of different qualifications. Please do contact our Student Recruitment Team if you have any queries.

International applications

We accept qualifications from all over the world. To find our entry requirements from a specific country, please check our dedicated international pages.

Most international students are required to hold an English language qualification. Applicants are required to have a minimum UKVI approved IELTS exam score of 6.0 overall, with a minimum of 5.5 in each section. Equivalent English language qualifications are acceptable such as, IB English language syllabus A or B/English Literature (Grade 4).

We also accept some alternative English qualifications. Learn more about our English entry requirements.

You can email us on if you’d like to discuss your application individually.

BA (Hons) Architecture portfolio guidance

Your portfolio should be relevant to this course, but you can include a wide range of work that shows your creativity, technical competence and understanding of space.

You may wish to include some of the following:

  • 2-Dimensional creative work such as drawings, sketches, collages, paintings, photographs or illustrations that demonstrate technical ability and creativity. Try to include a wide range of different media and show work which demonstrates a variety of skills such as observational, landscape, life, perspective, architectural and technical drawing; use of colour, form, scale, accuracy, composition and creative imagination in a mix of digital and hand rendered images
  • 3-Dimensional creative work (usually documented through good quality photographs). You may include models, product prototypes, artefacts, sculptures or installations that you have designed and constructed. Try to demonstrate your understanding of scale, form and structure through the work you include
  • Work created using Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe InDesign, CAD, Sketch Up or other architectural design software
  • Don’t be afraid to show us work that you don’t think was successful. Be prepared to tell us why, and talk about what you learned in the process.

Further portfolio advice and tips

Get more advice on presentation formats, layouts and when to submit your portfolio in the application process.

Fees and Funding

The cost of your course is determined by your status as either ‘UK or ‘International/EU’, so it’s important to check your fee status. If you’re unsure, the UKCISA website will help you determine whether you’re eligible to pay a UK fee (also called a ‘home’ fee). If you’d prefer to speak to NUA directly, please contact

UK students are eligible for a tuition fee loan from the UK government, meaning you won’t have to pay your fees up front. Further details about tuition fee loans are provided below. International students are not eligible for the UK government tuition fee loan.

2021/22 Tuition Fees for new entrants

Citizen status




Undergraduate degree (full-time three and four year degree)


International (including EU)

Undergraduate degree (full-time three and four year degree)


Fees will remain the same for each year of your course. 

International students

Find out more about 2021 fees for international students and the scholarships and support available.

Financial support for UK students

Tuition fee loans and loans for living costs are available, as well as non-repayable NUA bursaries that take into account family income. Find out how to apply for funding.

Tuition Fee Loan for undergraduate study – 2021/22

Tuition fee loans are available for UK students.

  • Available to cover the full cost of your tuition
  • You don’t have to pay for your course up front yourself
  • Only start paying back when you are earning over £26,575 per year

Maintenance Loan for undergraduate study – 2021/22

Student Maintenance Loans are available from Student Finance England for UK students to help with living costs such as accommodation, food, clothes, travel and course expenses. The amount students receive is dependent on household income and any maintenance grant received.

  • A loan of up to £9,203 may be available if you live away from home.
  • A loan of up to £7,747 may be available if you live with your parents.

Different figures may apply if you are currently based in Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland.

How can you find out more?

To learn more about loans, repayment calculations and other financial support, visit Student Finance. If you have any questions about fees, please email us:


Find out about scholarship programmes available to NUA applicants.


For new entrants whose household income is assessed as £25,000 or less, the university will offer a contribution towards the costs of studying at NUA (such as equipment, materials and other course-related costs). Find out more about bursaries at NUA

NUA alumni, staff and feeder staff discount

All NUA alumni are eligible for a £1,000 discount on NUA postgraduate degree fees. All NUA staff and staff from feeder institutions are eligible for a £500 discount on NUA postgraduate degree fees.

photo of alum Tom Cassidy leaning against railing in large atrium room looking away from camera with short dark brown hair and a dark blue long sleeved jumper

Nicholas Cassidy

"I’ve become more adventurous when developing design, the course encourages you to test concepts and always seek alternatives. But it’s not just my practice that’s developed, I have so much more confidence"

BA (Hons) Architecture

portrait photo of alum edd mitchem smiling and looking away from camera with crossed arms, short hair and wearing a grey t-shirt

Edd Mitchem

"Our studio has the perfect atmosphere — it feels like a working practice and with a city centre campus it’s easy to immerse yourself in the historic and inspirational buildings of Norwich."

BA (Hon) Architecture

BA Architecture student Caitlin Meier standing outside Boardman House looking into camera

Caitlin Meier

"As creatives, we have the power to envision new ideas and solutions and transform the way the built environment affects our planet."

BA (Hons) Architecture

BA Architecture student Bradley Fletcher in the architecture studio, perching on the black railed balcony

Bradley Fletcher

"There are still many stones yet to be unturned in the architectural industry, I hope to find some of them."

BA (Hons) Architecture


  • Antigoni Patsalou

  • Kirsten Tatum

  • Graham Thompson

  • Andrej Mecava

Need help? Chat to our friendly recruitment team

Book a place on an Open Day, or to find out more about how to apply for a course at NUA, please give us a call.


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