Foundation Year in Art and Design

Explore your creativity through a wide range of art and design disciplines and practical experiences in art and design.


Interested in Art & Design?

Art and Design is a popular career pathway with outstanding graduates of foundation, undergraduate and postgraduate levels including Masters and Doctorate.

Entrepreneurial artists, designers and creative thinkers contribute to the economic and cultural wealth of society.

Why apply for a foundation studies course?

The foundation course suited to aspiring artists and designers looking to expand and develop the creative and personal skills necessary to study at degree level.

Pursuing a foundation course allows you to experience and explore a range of art and design approaches and disciplines and make an informed choice about what you want to specialise in for your undergraduate degree.

Course duration

The foundation programme is full-time course over two semesters.

Entry requirements

You must satisfy the University’s General Entrance Requirements for admission to a first degree course and hold GCSE English Language at grade C or above (or equivalent).

  • GCE/VCE A-Level: A minimum of 160 UCAS Tariff Points to include grades CC
  • Irish Leaving Certificate: 160 UCAS tariff Points to include CCCC

Eligible undergraduate programmes

Once you complete the foundation programme, you can continue studying:


Benefits of the foundation programme

    A key feature of this programme is that the foundation experience is situated within an inspirational School of Art creative environment, and provides a balanced preparation for all disciplines in art and design. The foundation programme is located on the fifth floor of the campus.

    Our students are encouraged to be creative and imaginative and have the opportunity to not only work with specialist staff but also become involved in workshops and projects with students from both undergraduate and postgraduate levels.

    We strongly encourage these practices and give students the opportunity to apply their new skills and knowledge in ‘real world’ contexts.

    Many of our students are extremely successful in a range of national and international competitions (in a number of discipline areas) and have had their work exhibited in shows internationally.

    Ultimately, through this foundation course you will be able to develop an individual and confident perception of your specialist area of study and future career pathway.

    A selection of foundation students’ work is exhibited as part of the end of year degree shows at the Belfast School of Art. These shows attract over four thousand visitors, with many foundation students selling their work directly to the public.


      How to apply

      Students applying for entry to year zero (foundation level) of any of our Art and Design BA/BDes programmes should use the code WW1F on their UCAS form, despite their preferred route of specialism from year 1.

      You may be invited to submit an e-portfolio of your own work, up to 25 images (100mbs). A review panel consisting of members of staff will assess your potential to study on the foundation year.

      Apply Now

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      Student Coursework

      • Foundation Art Coursework
      • Foundation Art Coursework
      • Foundation Art Coursework
      • Foundation Art Coursework
      • Foundation Art Coursework

      Get more information

      If you would like more information on our foundation year at Belfast School of Art please get in touch with Course Director Pauline Clancy.

      Pauline Clancy

      Lecturer in Foundation Studies (Design)

      Belfast School of Art


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