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Why Study Art and Design Foundation Courses in the UK


 With students from all over the world studying in the UK, the country has been a melting pot of cultures for over a decade. The Country has become a cosmopolitan city with trends that most students would already be familiar with, making it much easier for international students to study and live. UK universities are also ranked among the top universities globally by QS World University Rankings and THE Rankings.

The UK government offers several bursaries and scholarships for international students who aspire to enrol in UK Universities. For instance, the British Chevening Scholarship is one of the popular scholarships provided by the UK government for Indonesian Students.

Owing to great value and recognition, over 40,000 international students opt for an Art and Design course in the UK annually. If you are looking to pursue a career in the arts and design field, this blog is a good read for you. Read on to find out more about art and design courses in the UK.

Foundation Courses in the UK

Foundation or Pathway courses allow you to explore the course and field even before you enter university life. Foundation courses in the UK are also a great way to explore new lifestyles and settle into a new routine and learning environment.

The top 3 Universities in the UK that offer foundation courses in Art and Design are:

    1. Kaplan UK
    2. Northumbria University (Pathway)
    3. INTO Manchester – Manchester Metropolitan University

Art and Design Course Requirements

Many Universities in the UK expect international students to have basic qualifications to match their standards. Although some of them might vary, we have compiled the standard requirements expected by most UK universities:

    • Students need to have an arts and design foundation course or an equivalent 1-year diploma to their credit before applying to art and design universities.
    • A portfolio that showcases the student's best art or design work is an essential requirement for course admissions. Students can also build their portfolios during their foundation course.
    • Students must have completed an A-level in art or a design-related subject.

A few A-levels that students pursue that are useful for arts and design courses include Art History, Photography, Design Technology, and English Literature. These may vary depending on the university you are applying to, hence we recommend you do your research before applying to an institution.

Students also need to be above the age of 19, have a student visa and financial support to pay their tuition fee, accommodation, travel, and other necessities. 

Fees and Duration

The duration of any foundation course lasts 6-months to 1 year. But most students opt for the 1-year course to qualify for admissions. Students will have to take care of their accommodation, food, and transportation expenses during the course. Art and Design Foundation courses cost an average of £18,300 per year for international students excluding study materials and equipment.

Scope of Arts and Design Degrees

The art and creative industries contribute about £115.9billion annually in the UK. This accounts for 6% of the economy according to the Department of Digital, Culture, Media & Sport report in 2019.

The art and design industry in the UK is promising and is full of opportunities for graduates. We have compiled some of the industries where students can get placed upon graduation below:

    1. Advertising and Marketing jobs
    2. Designing and Fashion
    3. Media and Telecommunications
    4. Performance and Visual Arts
    5. Game Development
    6. Graphic Designing
    7. UI / UX Designer - IT
    8. Interior Decorations and Landscape
    9. Museums and Conservatories
    10. Publications and Communications

These are just a few of the many opportunities that you will have to choose from when you graduate in the UK. As industries continue to evolve, newer opportunities and jobs are on the rise. 

Job Roles and Salary

Graduates in Arts and Design courses get paid according to their education qualification, skill, and experience. Here are a list of sought-after Art and Design Courses jobs in the UK:



Graphic Designer

£15,000 to £19,000




£16,000 and £22,000.

Interior Designer

£18,000 to £23,000

Fashion Designer

£16,000 to £18,000

We hope we have covered the questions you may have had about the many art and design foundation courses in the UK. If you are interested in pursuing an art & design foundation course in the UK or have questions about studying in the UK in general, get in touch with our expert counselors today!

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