Go back to the top of the page
BA (Hons) Fine Art

BA (Hons) Fine Art

Institution code: N39
Course 3 Year UCAS code: W101
Course 4 Year UCAS code: W102
Course length: 3 or 4 year options

Our BA (Hons) Fine Art degree is one of the longest-established Fine Art degrees in the country,  benefiting from over 170 years of excellence in Fine Art education.

Graduates of our undergraduate Fine Art course have achieved national and international success, including a Turner Prize nomination, inclusion in the New Contemporaries and selection for the XL Catlin Art Guide.

Your fine art skills

You’ll join a vibrant community of fellow artists and creative thinkers, building a substantial body of work as you enjoy the freedom to explore your artistic practice and working methods throughout the course. Studio and project spaces within our purpose-built fine art studios will provide the ideal physical space to express your unique voice as an artist.

You’ll develop your curatorial skills, exhibiting your own work and peers’, on campus and off, and you’ll benefit from dedicated contact time with expert academic staff throughout your studies.

Your fine art future

As well as developing creatively, you’ll gain valuable professional competencies like communication skills, independent working, professional writing, organisation and team working. You’ll develop business skills related to selling your work and growing your audience, covering specifics of curation, contracts, terms for pricing and selling work, presenting work and networking.

Throughout your degree they’ll be opportunities to exhibit your work publicly, including at international exhibitions. You’ll have the chance to make the most of our close links with regional and national galleries like Tate Modern, Wysing Arts Centre and OUTPOST through our visiting lecture series and symposia – a unique opportunity to network with leading contemporary artists, curators and academics.

Graduates work in a broad range of careers including

  • Practising Artist
  • Community Artist
  • Exhibition Organiser
  • Arts Administrator
  • Lecturer
  • Art Consultant
  • Gallery Manager
  • Researcher
  • Curator
  • Teacher
  • Image Retoucher
  • Art Handler

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

Course content

  • Year 1
  • An emphasis on 'thinking through making' using traditional and new media techniques will help you identify your artistic interests
  • Comprehensive workshop inductions
  • Grow your understanding of critical theories such as psychoanalysis and aesthetics
  • Visit galleries and events nationally and internationally
  • Contextualise your work and think more practically about audience
  • Exhibit in the NUA Project Spaces
  • Explore collaborative, collective and socially engaged approaches
  • Introduction to the 12 essential skills of the Fine Art innovative programme.
  • Year 2
  • Workshops in either painting, print, sculpture, mixed media or video
  • External exhibitions, publication or placement
  • Learn advanced drawing techniques
  • Opportunities to use project spaces and external venues for experimentation, collaboration, display, critique, curation, performance and discussion.
  • Year 3
  • Prepare a comprehensive Research Report related to your practice
  • Regular student-led presentations for sharing individual practice
  • Opportunity to be part of the curation team planning the Degree Show
  • Professional practice conference
  • Degree Show, attended by curators, collectors, buyers and gallery owners
  • Opportunity to showcase your work in London.
Visit the Degree Show website #Disrupt
Convention

Typical UK offers

A / AS Levels – GCE
GCE A/AS Levels 3 A-level qualifications at grades BBB, at least one of which must be in an art, design or media related subject. 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, 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
Merit

UAL Level 3 Foundation Diploma in Art and Design
Merit

UAL Level 4 Foundation Diploma in Art and Design
Pass

Foundation Diploma in Art and Design
Merit

Access to Higher Education Diploma (Art and Design)
Pass

International Baccalaureate Diploma
A minimum of 32 points

NUA welcomes applicants of all ages from all backgrounds. Your application will be primarily assessed through interview and portfolio review 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 interview 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).

You can email us on international@nua.ac.uk if you’d like to discuss your application individually.

BA (Hons) Fine Art degree portfolio guidance

Your interview

After you apply to study BA Fine Art at NUA we’ll invite you to an interview on campus or by skype or telephone, depending on your circumstance.

If you apply by the UCAS deadline of 15 January your interview will usually take place in February. We’ll ask you to prepare your portfolio ready to bring with you or submit online ahead of your interview.

Read our tips for interviews at NUA.

Your portfolio

This is your chance to show us what you’re all about. Choose pieces that reflect your creativity and personal interests, as well as demonstrating your technical skills.

How much work should I include?

Choose at least two projects that show the steps you took to develop an idea. This might mean you include experiments, drafts or variations that demonstrate the progression of a project from the earliest stages through to completion. Don’t worry if they’re not perfect drawings, paintings or renderings – we want to understand how you think during the creative process.

What type of work should I include?

Finished projects that you’re excited about! Remember, we’re interested in you. What motivates your choice in discipline? What shapes your creative identity? You can submit assessed projects and coursework, but we recommend including independent work where possible. Self-initiated projects showcase your ability to generate ideas and tell us more about you and your ambition.

Things to consider

Take your time choosing pieces for your portfolio

You should be confident and passionate talking about each piece. You may not be able to talk us through everything in your portfolio at the interview, so be sure to present the work in a logical way. Choose a layout that tells the story of each project and use a structure that gives a full picture of your creative practice.

Show us the full range of your creative experience and interests

Tell us about contemporary creatives that have influenced your practice. Exhibitions, shows or festivals that have inspired you or influenced your work. Competitions you’ve entered and prizes you’ve won. If you can, avoid too much repetition in style and subject matter.

Your portfolio should be relevant to the course you’re applying to, 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:

  • Evidence of working independently, using your own ideas or inspirations
  • Drawing, which could include literal images from observation or imaginative work
  • Sculpture or model making or installation in any medium
  • Painting
  • Printmaking
  • Collage and mixed media
  • Textile work
  • Photography
  • Sound design
  • Film and/or animation work
  • Performance, installation or interactive work
  • Work created using Adobe Creative Suite or other appropriate design software package
  • Collaborative work

Hardcopy portfolios

  • If you’re only submitting hardcopy materials you should aim to submit 20-30 pieces. Portfolios should be ring bound or loose boards between A4 and A1 in size.
  • Include 2-3 sketchbooks with the portfolio to demonstrate idea development, contextualisation and your work strategies.
  • Large, intricate or fragile pieces should be shown as good quality photographs.
  • If you’re submitting a showreel you should also present 10-15 images of other work (see digital portfolios guidance below).
  • Labels should be discreet, neat and used in a consistent manner for clear navigation.
  • Ensure your name is on the portfolio.

Digital portfolios

  • Include up to 30 images, including images from sketchbooks, research, experimental work and finished pieces.
  • If you’re presenting a showreel, your work should be no longer than five minutes, but you can include 10-15 accompanying images.
  • Ensure photographs and scans are in focus and in large enough format to see clearly.
  • Digital work should be presented on an online platform such as your own website, Tumblr, Flickr, Prezi, MeMyArt, YouTube, Vimeo or a personal blog. The link should then be submitted through the Applicant Portal or by emailing the relevant address below.
  • Ensure your digital portfolio is accessible before you arrive for interview, as your interviewer will load it in advance of the interview.
  • UK and EU applicants should send their link to admissions@nua.ac.uk
  • Non-EU and EEA applicants should send their link to international@nua.ac.uk

Written submission

As part of your offer you may be asked to submit a piece of written work in addition to your application, usually after your interview.

Typically an essay, report or completed log of between 500 and 1,000 words, your submission should demonstrate your ability to think critically, make informed analysis and communicate confidently in a subject area related to your proposed course of study.       

Questions?

If you have any questions about preparing your portfolio please don’t hesitate to contact us.

And if you’re coming to a NUA Open Day, we recommend attending the portfolio preparation session, which includes a step-by-step look at preparing an arts, design or media portfolio.

“The most important thing we are looking for is inventiveness, creativity, ingenuity and a real desire to come up with something that is unique”
– 
Carl Rowe, Course Leader.

Fees and Funding

The cost of your course is determined by your status as either ‘UK/EU’ or ‘International’, 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/EU fee (also called a ‘home’ fee). If you’d prefer to speak to NUA directly, please contact student.finance@nua.ac.uk

UK/EU 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.

2018/19 Tuition Fees For New Entrants

Citizen status

Course

Fee

UK/EU nationality

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

£9,250

International (non-EU)

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

£13,700

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

International students

Find out more about 2018 fees for international students and the support available.

Financial support for UK/EU students in 2018

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

Tuition Fee Loan for Undergraduate study

Tuition fee loans are available for UK and EU 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 £25,000 per year

Maintenance Loan for Undergraduate study – 2018/19

Student Maintenance Loans are available for UK and eligible EU 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 £8,700 may be available if you live away from home.
  • A loan of up to £7,324 may be available if you live with your parents.

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 student.finance@nua.ac.uk

Scholarships

Find out about scholarship programmes available to NUA applicants.

Bursaries

NUA offers bursaries to new students whose household income is £42,875 or less.

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.

Four year degree

Our innovative four year degrees are exactly the same as our three year degrees but include an extra year of study at the beginning – Year 0.

Year 0 is about developing the skills, foundation, knowledge and the confidence you need to successfully complete your degree course. Building on your experience from A Level or equivalent courses, the Year 0 curriculum allows time to develop the practical, creative and conceptual skills that are critical to successfully completing an undergraduate degree at NUA.

While studying Year 0 BA (Hons) Fine Art you will begin to establish your individual creative voice and follow your own direction through projects designed to challenge and stretch you. You’ll undertake both studio and research led projects that will inform the development of your work and enhance your contextual awareness.

You’ll benefit from inductions in the workshop areas used throughout your degree, and you will also have mixed year critiques with Year 1 Fine Art students. You will also be able to engage with the Fine Art lecture programme, which is open to all years, as well as having the opportunity to curate and realise an exhibition outside the confines of the University.

Typical UK offers and entry requirements for Year 0 entry

GCE A/AS Levels
2 A-level qualifications at grades CC or higher, at least one of which must be in an art, design or media related subject.

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

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

UAL Extended Diploma
An overall Pass

UAL Level 3 Foundation Diploma in Art and Design
An overall Pass

Foundation Diploma in Art and Design 
Pass

Access to Higher Education Diploma (Art and Design)
Pass

International Baccalaureate Diploma
A minimum of 28 points

Students

portrait photo of alum Alveera Rahman sitting in chair and smiling away from camera with black medium hair and brown long sleeved jumper

Alveera Rahman

"The course has enabled me to broaden my idea of what art is and what it can be in terms of its physical and non-physical form. In my first year I’ve gained a more defined perspective on the issues and concepts I want to explore in my own practice."

BA (Hons) Fine Art

Bethany Freer of Norwich University of the Arts holding a QR code

Bethany Freer

"Networking and being able to study in such a creative hub at NUA has allowed me to find new talents and work collaboratively to broaden my own skills and ideas."

BA (Hons) Fine Art

portrait photo of Robert Grayson smiling as he looks away from camera with short swept hair and red buttoned shirt

Robert Grayson

"The city is a hub of creativity including brilliant music venues and museums. It's a perfect city to develop my interest in community and public art."

BA (Hons) Fine Art

photo of alum Ruby Jaye-Wood sitting in chair holding pen smiling away from camera with tied back hair and long thick knit jumper

Ruby Jaye-Wood

"NUA is surrounded by this warm creative atmosphere that is filled with quirky bars, shops, galleries and spaces fitting every mood and style."

BA (Hons) Fine Art

Lecturers

  • Karl Foster

  • Mark Wilsher

  • Madalina Zaharia

  • Graham Giles

  • Bruce McLean - Visiting Lecturer

    Performance Artist and Painter
  • Cosmo Sheldrake - Visiting Lecturer

    Multi-instrumentalist Musician, Composer and Producer
  • David Mackintosh - Visiting Lecturer

    Artist

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 contact Lynne, Sam, Tom, or Tori:

Call: +44 (0) 1603 610561

Email: studentrecruitment@nua.ac.uk

Tweet: @NorwichUniArts

Instagram: norwichuniarts

Facebook: Visit our page

What is KIS?