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Graphic Arts and Music

BA (Hons)

Undergraduate degree - available through the Creative Arts programme

Key facts

Award
BA (Hons) Creative Arts: Graphic Arts and Music
School
College of Liberal Arts
Campus or location
Newton Park
Course length
Three years full-time.
UCAS codes
Institution Code: B20
Course Code: WW32
Campus Code: A,BSU

Entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. Typical offers include A level grades BBC with Music Grade B and Grade B in Art & Design or related subjects preferred.

View typical offers for more information.

A course that will develop your visual and graphic design ability and skills.

  • Study and combine two areas of creative practice.
  • Taught by practicing members of staff.
  • Excellent workshops and technical support.

Graphic Arts is studied as a subject within the Creative Arts programme, so you’ll select another subject to study alongside it. The way subjects interact varies, so the shape of the course depends on the subject you combine with Graphic Arts. For example if you decide to combine Graphic Arts and Creative Writing the subject may function differently than if you study Graphic Arts and Music.

What you'll learn

Overview

You’ll be able to study and practice a wide range of disciplines from typography, illustration, photography, printmaking, web design, book binding and media. As the course progresses you’ll find the emphasis is placed on you; you’ll pursue your own areas of interest, with support from specialist academic and technical staff.

In your first year you’ll develop your practical skills and thinking. You’ll gain new knowledge and hands on experience, through practical typography projects, introductions to industry standard software and lectures on art theory and history.

In years two and three we’ll encourage you to develop your individual areas of practice and contextual research through live project briefs, weekly group seminars, critiques, lectures and individual tutorials. 

Course structure

Year one
Attend practical project led workshops, as well as historical and contextual studies lectures, complemented by optional modules in print and photography.

Year two
Undertake self directed studio practice in your chosen area and work on live design projects.

Year three
Complete self directed studio practice, work on more live design projects, and work towards your degree show exhibition.

How will I be assessed?

You’ll be assessed by practical portfolio submissions or exhibitions of coursework, supported by research/context folders. At various stages of the course you’ll be required to give presentations, curate exhibitions and work collaboratively.

As part of your historical and contextual studies programme, you’ll be required to demonstrate your understanding and research through short written tasks and group presentations.

How will I be taught?

You’ll be taught by staff who are practising designers and researchers through technical demonstrations, individual tutorials, group critiques, lectures and seminars. Teaching takes place in workshops (year 1) and studio spaces (years 2 and 3).

You’ll benefit from a programme of visiting speakers who will talk about their own practice and their experience working as contemporary designers, curators, artists, makers and publishers within the creative industries.

Opportunities

Study abroad

You’ll have the opportunity to study in a wide range of locations around the world. Our students have completed Erasmus+ and Exchange programmes in a variety of countries including Norway, Germany, Japan, Australia and the USA

Field trips

You’ll have opportunities to participate in regular field trips across all the Creative Arts course modules. As a department we run at least four London study trips per year. We also organise international study visits to places like Berlin, Paris, New York and Venice (please note that you’ll have to pay for some study visits).

Work placements, industry links and internships

There are opportunities for you to undertake work placements as part of the wider Creative Arts professional practice programme. Past Graphic Arts students have worked with companies such as Oakwood DC.

Careers

Graduate careers include:

  • self employment as designers
  • curatorship
  • gallery administration
  • teaching
  • art administration
  • community based art work

90% of students go on to work and/or study in the Art subject area.

Competitions and awards

We’ll encourage you to participate in competitions such as the Porthleven Prize and the Gane Trust Travel Grant among many others. Each year you are asked to enter the Penguin Book Cover competition. Our students have been nominated for, and won, awards such as the Threadneedle Prize, the Lynn Painter-Stainers Prize and the Royal West of England student drawing prize.

Each year we offer three prizes to our second and third year students:

  • The ‘Beyond the Studio’ Student Prize for Entrepreneurship in Art
  • The Outstanding Art Student Prize
  • The Excellence in the Creative Arts and Contemporary Arts Practice Development Prize

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

The subject is taught in workshops and studios at Dartmouth Avenue and Sion Hill.

Workshops you are able to work in are: digital design, woodwork, metalwork, sculpture, casting, plastics, etching, screenprint, photography, 3D print, digital print and bookbinding.

We run free evening life drawing sessions at Dartmouth Avenue in winter and spring terms.

Fees

UK and EU students full time

2017/18 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £9,250
Year 2 Published Jan 2018
Year 3 Published Jan 2019
Material fees
Year 1 £160
Year 2 £165
Year 3 Published 2019

2018/19 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2018
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2020
Material fees
Year 1 £165
Year 2 Published 2019
Year 3 Published 2021

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2019
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2021
Material fees
Year 1 Published 2019
Year 2 Published 2020
Year 3 Published 2021

UK and EU students part time

2017/18 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £4,625
Year 2 Published Jan 2018
Year 3 Published Jan 2019
Material fees
Year 1 £85
Year 2 £90
Year 3 Published 2019

2018/19 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2018
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2020
Material fees
Year 1 Published 2019
Year 2 Published 2020
Year 3 Published 2021

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2019
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2021
Material fees
Year 1 Published 2019
Year 2 Published 2020
Year 3 Published 2021

International students full time

2017/18 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £13,500
Year 2 Published Jan 2018
Year 3 Published Jan 2018
Material fees
Year 1 £160
Year 2 £165
Year 3 Published 2019

2018/19 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2018
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2021
Material fees
Year 1 £165
Year 2 Published 2019
Year 3 Published 2021

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2019
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2021
Material fees
Year 1 Published 2019
Year 2 Published 2020
Year 3 Published 2021

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

We’re looking for creative and committed individuals who are curious, reflective and interested in their subject areas. You should be able to take risks and have an open mind. We value the ability to think critically and reflectively just as much as we value the ability to create.

Typical offers

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. The main ones are listed below:

  • A Level - A Level grades BCC including Grade B in Art & Design or related subjects preferred. Applicants will be invited to interview and will be required to bring high quality portfolio
  • BTEC -  Extended Diploma grades Merit, Merit. Merit (MMM) in a related subject in addition to other qualifications or evidence of experience in Art.
  • International Baccalaureate - A minimum of 27 points will be required in addition to evidence of further experience in Art & Design.
  • Access to HE courses - Typical offers for applicants with Access to HE will be the Access to HE Diploma or Access to HE Certificate (60 credits, 45 of which must be Level 3, including 30 at merit or higher). Any selection procedure/further requirements will also apply. Access courses accepted in addition to evidence of further experience in Art & Design.
  • Diploma in Foundation Studies (Art & Design) - Diploma in Foundation Studies (Art & Design) Merit Grade is preferred in combination with the qualifications listed above. Applicants will be considered without this.

English Language Requirements for International and EU Applicants
IELTS 6.0 - for visa nationals, with a minimum score of IELTS 5.5 in each element.

How do I apply?

Ready to apply? Click the 'apply now' button in the centre of this page. Need more guidance? Head to our how to apply pages.

Interview and portfolio guidance

Your portfolio is an important part of the application process, it gives us an insight into who you are as a practicing artist and designer. You’ll need to show us a range of finished pieces of work. We also ask that you include a wide variety of supporting work in your portfolio (preparatory work, sketchbooks and research). We advise that you do not simply pick your favourite pieces but consult tutors, friends and family to ensure the work you include showcases your talent. If the work is too large to bring – photograph it.

Get ahead

Research contemporary designers, visit exhibitions and be prepared to discuss them.

Use a sketchbook to draw, collect found or photographed images and make notes – look carefully at things, reflect on things you encounter.

Admissions service: +44 (0)1225 876 180
Email: admissions@bathspa.ac.uk

Do and make in this practical course, concentrating on performance and composition.

  • Great performance opportunities, from jazz to opera, on this ‘conservatoire in a university’ course.
  • Varied and busy programme in classical, jazz, musical theatre, opera and world music.
  • 97% overall student satisfaction, National Student Survey 2015.

This is a practical and creative Music course. You’ll benefit from: dynamic staff, with national and international reputations; great facilities; and opportunities to participate in a wide range of ensembles. You’ll study performance as well as composition, with opportunities to give regular performances in Bath and beyond.

You’ll compose work in a wide variety of styles and have the opportunity to work with film, new media and dance. Work is performed either by our ensembles and soloists or by the numerous visiting professional groups.

“Every year the music department stages Opera and Music Theatre productions to a very high standard, which is something that really interests me. There are a large number of ensembles to take part in, and also the support and facilities to start your own if you wanted to.”

Joe Gatley, Music graduate

What you'll learn

Overview

Through the course you’ll study practical areas (such as classical or jazz performance on an instrument or voice and composition) and academic content (such as musicology relating to styles and genres from medieval through to pop, jazz and contemporary world music).

You can also study areas such as empirical music psychology, community music, opera and musical theatre, and issues within the music industry.

You’ll play to your strengths, with the opportunity to specialise in areas including music psychology, community music skills, world music and field studies, opera and musical theatre.

We currently have over 30 ensembles open to all students, including: numerous choirs; symphony and chamber orchestra; wind band and jazz big band; jazz small groups; our own Javanese Gamelan; brass, wind and string ensembles; folk; and experimental music groups.

Course structure

Year one
You’ll study performance, including weekly one-to-one instrumental/vocal lessons, composition in a wide range of styles and genres, music technology in our industry standard labs, world music lectures and practical workshops, musicology lectures and seminars, research and study skills.

Year two
You’ll develop skills in teaching and in the area of music management and promotion through the Professional Musician module. This offers you the opportunity to undertake a placement in an organisation of your choice.

In addition to the Professional Musician module (which is core) there are a number of optional modules. You continue to develop your musical skills, and increasingly you will specialise in areas of particular strength and interest – for example in performance, composition or musicology in classical or jazz styles.

Year three
You’ll have the freedom for creative output in specialisms such as performance or composition together with the choice of a wide range of supporting modules, from the Opera Project to Music Psychology and Music in Action (which is a community music module).

How will I be assessed?

You’ll be assessed through coursework, including compositions and essays; spoken presentations; and through practical assessments such as recitals, technicals and rehearsals.

How will I be taught?

The course is taught through workshops, masterclasses, lectures, seminars, individual tutorials and instrumental/vocal lessons. Teaching sessions are highly interactive, whether face-to-face or online (for example, through wikis or discussion boards).

You’ll be taught by, and work alongside, a creative community of experts. Full-time staff are all practicing performers, composers and musicologists. You’ll also be taught by visiting staff, many with international reputations.

Opportunities

Study abroad

There are opportunities through the Erasmus scheme to study abroad for a term or longer in year 2 – we have links with university music departments and schools in Europe, particularly Germany, and the USA.

Performances

We give regular performances throughout the year in Bath as well as beyond. Each year we fully stage opera and musical theatre productions, ranging from Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro and Puccini's Il Trittico, to Philip Glass's Satyagraha and Sondheim's Into the Woods and Company to Seussical.

Field trips

In year 2 and 3, particularly the modules ‘Music in its Cultural Contexts’ and ‘Music in Action’, students have the opportunity to engage with music projects in the community.

Work placements, industry links and internships

During the course you’ll explore the constantly changing needs of the employment market, and you’ll undertake a placement in Year 2. Recent placements have included the Bath International Music Festival, Bath Philharmonia, the BBC Proms, Welsh National Opera, Glyndebourne, Royal Opera, BBC Music Magazine, Dorling Kindersley and Real World.

You’ll benefit from masterclass sessions from industry experts. Recent visitors include: Peter Donohoe, Mark-Anthony Turnage, Jason Rebello, Joanna MacGregor, Graham Fitkin, Iain Ballamy and Rosa Mannion.

Student prizes

We offer three student prizes to students in Year 3:

  • Performance Prize
  • Composition Prize for the best Year 3 composition portfolio
  • Ensemble Prize for outstanding contributions to ensembles in Year 3

Careers

Graduates from BA Music at Bath Spa University have careers in:

  • Performing
  • Teaching
  • Music in the community
  • Composing for concert, screen, stage and education
  • Music and arts management
  • Music promotion and publishing

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

Based at the Michael Tippett Centre, we have excellent facilities including:

  • A purpose-built concert hall with superb acoustics;
  • 17 practice rooms, three with electronically variable acoustic;
  • A wide range of medieval, renaissance and baroque instruments, and a large collection of percussion and orchestral instruments;
  • A Javanese Gamelan;
  • A high spec music technology laboratory;
  • Five recording studios;
  • Two band rehearsal rooms;
  • Large well-stocked Music Library and a wide range of online musical resources.

Fees

UK and EU students full time

2017/18 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £9,250
Year 2 Published Jan 2018
Year 3 Published Jan 2019

2018/19 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2018
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2020

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2019
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2021

UK and EU students full time - with placement year

During the placement year, the fee is reduced to 20% of the full time fee. Otherwise, fees are the same as for full time study.

International students full time

2017/18 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £13,500
Year 2 Published Jan 2018
Year 3 Published Jan 2018

2018/19 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2018
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2021

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2019
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2021

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

We’re looking for creativity, whether as a performer or composer. You’ll have an energy and passion for music in all its styles and genres and in its uses in industry, education, therapy and everyday life.

Applicants must have, or be working towards Grade 8 Music Practical in first instrument study and expect to achieve a minimum of Grade 5 Music Theory before joining our undergraduate programme.

Eligible applicants will be auditioned at our Newton Park campus between December and March where you'll be invited by email to:

  • Perform two contrasting items of repertoire at Grade 7/8 level.
  • Sight read a short piece or song at approximately Grade 6 standard.
  • Bring examples of original compositions or theory work.
  • Bring an example of a written essay in music.
  • More details will be provided on invitation.

Typical offers

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. The main ones are listed below:

  • A Level - Grades BCC including Music Grade B or related subject.
  • BTEC -  Extended Diploma in Music or related subject accepted at grade Distinction, Merit, Merit (DMM) accepted.
  • International Baccalaureate - A minimum of 27 points required in addition to evidence of Music ability and/or other graded Music qualifications.
  • Access to HE courses -  Typical offers for applicants with Access to HE will be the Access to HE Diploma or Access to HE Certificate (60 credits, 45 of which must be Level 3, including 30 at merit or higher)  accepted in addition to evidence of Music ability and/or other graded Music qualifications.

English Language Requirements for International and EU Applicants
IELTS 6.0 - for visa nationals, with a minimum score of IELTS 5.5 in each element.

How do I apply?

Ready to apply? Click the 'apply now' button in the centre of this page. Need more guidance? Head to our how to apply pages.

Interview and portfolio guidance

We interview all prospective students at interview days from December onwards. You’ll meet staff and see our facilities, as well as having the chance to discuss the course with students and staff.

Applicants must have, or be working towards Grade 8 Music Practical in first instrument study and expect to achieve a minimum of Grade 5 Music Theory before joining our undergraduate programme.

 

Eligible applicants will be auditioned at our Newton Park campus between December and March where you'll be invited by email to:

 

  • Perform two contrasting items of repertoire at ABRSM Grade 7/8 standard or equivalent.
  • Sight read a short piece or song at approximately Grade 6 standard.
  • Bring examples of original compositions or theory work.
  • Bring an example of a written essay in music.
  • More details will be provided on invitation.

We do not charge an audition fee.

For international students or students unable to come to Bath we also accept an online portfolio in the form of video/PDF examples of your performance and work.

 

Admissions service: +44 (0)1225 876 180
Email: admissions@bathspa.ac.uk
Course leader: Roger Heaton

Website feedback to web@bathspa.ac.uk