The Northern School of Art

Degree level: Undergraduate
Awarded by: Arts University Bournemouth

Illustration for Commercial Application

Make sure you check on the university, college or conservatoire website for any updates about course changes as a result of COVID-19.

Course summary

Our illustration degree programme will provide you with the skills, knowledge and industry links to forge a career as a comic-book artist, editorial illustrator, picture-book artist, product illustrator, concept artist, greetings-card artist or fashion illustrator. You will also be equipped with the business and creative skills to pursue a career in advertising, editorial, games, film, television, comics and publishing. During your studies there will be access to a programme of inspirational ‘Live’ briefs, which provide you with the opportunity to get real-life feedback from publishers, clients or working illustrators – typically, we have a variety of guest speakers throughout the duration of the course. These have included Chris Riddell, Tor Freeman, Godmachine, and Sam Arthur, MD of NoBrow Publishing. All of this is underpinned by excellent resources including Wacom Cintiqs and Macs - and a range of industry standard illustrative software. The studio is located in a highly inspirational building dedicated to illustration and graphic design with staff who continue to practise in the industry. We value the importance of a vibrant studio culture and you will work in a commercial, creative eviornment. You will have access to traditional printing processes in our print room, where you can explore risograph and screen-printing methods to inform your projects. Commercial Experience Students have sold work at various commercial events, including: Spitalfields Market, London Coningsby Gallery, London The House of Blah Blah, Middlesbrough Ernest, Newcastle Thought Bubble, Harrogate


In your first year (Level Four) you will explore: Creative Processes and Visualisation Introductory Visual Culture Exploring Narrative in Illustration Exploring Contemporary Illustration In your second year (Level Five) you will develop: Innovation in Illustration Visual Culture Theory Negotiated Commercial Practice Illustration for Editorial and Advertising In your third year (Level Six) you will produce: Project Research and Preparation Dissertation/Report Final Major Project Final Show and Portfolio

Assessment method

In course assessment. Each module is assessed upon completion and given a percentage mark.

How to apply

Application codes

Course code:
Institution code:
Campus name:
The Northern School of Art
Campus code:

Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Year 1
  • Year 2
  • Year 3

International applicants

We do not currently accept students from outside of the UK. However, we can accept applications from those have evidence of pre-settled status to live, work and study in the UK. Please contact [email protected] for more information.

Entry requirements

Qualification requirements

Your potential is our main focus when assessing your suitability for the programme you have applied to. Because of this, we take into account all aspects of your application and not just your academic profile. If you are a mature applicant (i.e. 21+ years), we will place more emphasis on your portfolio and the skills and experience you can demonstrate at interview. Your portfolio, which you bring to interview, is an integral part of the assessment. It should demonstrate your current skills, interests and knowledge where appropriate. It is also expected that you will bring evidence of written work to interview and/or have a Level 2 qualification in English/Literacy.

Additional entry requirements



Unistats information

Operated by the Office for Students
Student satisfaction
Employment after 15 months (Most common jobs)
Go onto work and study

The student satisfaction data is from students surveyed during the Covid-19 pandemic. The number of student respondents and response rates can be important in interpreting the data – it is important to note your experience may be different from theirs. This data will be based on the subject area rather than the specific course. Read more about this data on the Discover Uni website.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

England £9250 Year 1
Northern Ireland £9250 Year 1
Scotland £9250 Year 1
Wales £9250 Year 1

Additional fee information

As with most creative programmes delivered at higher education, this programme will have additional costs such as material and basic tools and contribution towards educational visits to ensure successful completion of the programme. The School offers financial support packages to help with this, whether this be through means-tested bursaries and/or grants. In addition, the School offers subsidised resale of course materials, free use of studios etc. More detailed information is provided at the interview stage; however, if you require this sooner please contact [email protected]
Illustration for Commercial Application at The Northern School of Art - UCAS