Ceramics

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How to Apply

Apply on UCAS's site

Ceramics is studied as a subject within the Creative Arts course, 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 Ceramics. For example if you decide to combine Ceramics and Creative Writing the subject may function differently than if you study Ceramics and Mixed Media Textiles.

Why study Ceramics?

You’ll investigate and practice a wide range of approaches and techniques, from hand building, glazing, decorating, firing, mould making, printed surface, digital 3D construction and throwing. This is underpinned by drawing and visual research. 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.

Course structure

 As your first year begins, you’ll develop and your practical skills and expand your thinking, by exploring Ceramics in a sculptural context. As the year progresses, you’ll gain new knowledge and hands on experience, through practical projects and lectures on theory and history.

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

The final year gives you the opportunity to explore and realise your ideas through an in-depth study of a chosen area, leading to an exhibition of a body of work and focussing on understanding your practice as a ceramacist within the wider creative community.

Modules

Year 1

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

Year 2

Undertake self directed studio practice in your chosen area.

Year 3

Complete self directed studio practice, working towards your degree show exhibition.

Course assessment

Assessments at all levels are by practical portfolio submission or exhibition of coursework, that is 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.

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 internship

There are opportunities for you to undertake work placements as part of the wider Creative Arts professional practice programme.

List of current alumni careers

Graduate careers include:

  • self employment as practising artists and makers;
  • curatorship;
  • gallery administration;
  • teaching;
  • art administration; and
  • community based art work.
  • 90% of students go on to work and/or study in one of their subject areas.

Competitions/awards

We’ll encourage you to participate in competitions such as the Porthleven Prize and the Gane Trust Travel Grant among many others. Our students have been nominated for, and won, awards such as the Threadneedle 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

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

Workshops you are able to work in are: ceramics, 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.

Teaching methods

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

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

Application method

All applications are through UCAS.

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. 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.

International students should visit our international pages for more information about our entry requirements, fees and scholarships, and student support.

Course enquiries

For more information please contact Martin Thomas on m.thomas2@bathspa.ac.uk

Typical offer range for UK / EU applicants

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.
  • BTEC - Extended Diploma grades Distinction, Merit. Merit (DMM) 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) Grade Merit preferred in addition to the qualifications listed above. Applicants applying without this will be considered.

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.

All applicants will be invited to interview at our Sion Hill Campus and will be required to bring high quality portfolio in support of their application. More details will be supplied to applicants who meet the entry criteria for the course.

Course enquiries

For further information about the programme or other enquiries, please email us at admissions@bathspa.ac.uk.

Career opportunities

Many different careers are possible: establishing studios as exhibiting artists, working as freelance artists to commission, or teaching at all levels of education. Often some of these roles may be combined. Other graduates may go on to postgraduate study or employment with museums, galleries and ceramics companies.

Since 2011 graduates from this course have worked with organisations such as the Roman Baths in Bath, The Maze Studios in Brighton and "Big Brother , Little Brother" mainly as potters, ceramists and freelance designers.