Guide to qualifications
The College has a wide range of vocational qualifications offered at different levels. These courses and qualifications are designed to build on the skills, interests and aptitudes you have to help you progress to a job, an Apprenticeship or to Higher Education / University. Our Art & Design courses are taught in specialist accommodation at The College, giving you access to a 'real life' environment where you will work to commercial and professional standards.
BTEC Level 1
BTEC Level 2
BTEC Level 3
HND Graphic Design
Short Evening Courses
Is it right for you? The design industry is one of Britain’s leading growth areas. It’s very strong locally, with a predicted 20% growth between 2010 and 2015. Our students go to a wide range of jobs in the sector, from graphic design and fashion to photography and fine art. You will work on various projects including live projects with real clients that we embed into the study experience. These help you gain the vital interpersonal, entrepreneurial, management and networking skills you need for work. These skills are of course highly transferable to other jobs and professions.
How will you learn? You’ll work in the large, well-lit studio spaces of the North Light Centre for Art and Design in Poole. Here we have industry-standard digital hardware and software, excellent printmaking facilities, a photography studio with digital darkroom, a fashion and textiles workshop and fine art studio.
You’ll be taught by lecturers who are art and design practitioners, with experience in the creative industries. Wherever possible, a digital skill set is embedded within more traditional studio activities. Learning is flexible, hands-on and focused on the student.Assessment is continuous and in most cases coursework based. This helps you to track your progress, take charge of your learning, and build a portfolio of work.
Introductory Diploma (Level 1 Diploma)
These are vocational, one year, introductory courses for students who join The College with few formal qualifications or who have achieved GCSEs with grades E to G. They give an introduction to a range of subjects as well as giving an opportunity to improve basic skills such as English, Maths and IT.
Level 2 Award / Certificate / Diploma
These are vocational courses at Level 2 which combine academic learning with practical elements. They provide a broad base of skills and knowledge for particular career areas. To enrol on this course you will need to have a minimum of 3 GCSEs with grades A* to D or successful completion of a Level 1 course. The First Diploma takes one year to complete, and successful completion can lead to progression on to the Level 3 Award / Certificate / Diploma.
Level 3 Diploma
These are vocational courses at Level 3 which combine academic learning with practical elements. They provide a higher level of skills and knowledge for particular career areas. To enrol on this course you will need to have a minimum of 4 GCSEs with grades A* to D or successful completion of a Level 2 course.
The Level 3 qualification is made up of 2 sections, the Subsidiary Diploma and the Extended Diploma. The Subsidiary Diploma can be completed after two terms of study, whilst the Extended Diploma carries on from the Subsidiary Diploma for a further 4 terms, taking 2 years in total to complete. Successful completion of the Extended Diploma will provide you with a qualification equivalent to 2 or 3 A levels which can lead to University or to employment.
The College offers a range of higher education qualifications in partnership with local universities including Bournemouth, Southampton and Southampton Solent. With the cost of moving away from home for a degree becoming an increasingly large factor in choosing where to study, an opportunity to gain a degree or other higher qualification locally could be the perfect solution. More information is available in the Higher Education section.
You can also download a guide to qualifications.