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Media Make Up with Special Effects*

Bradford College

Degree level: Undergraduate
Awarded by: University of Bolton

Course options

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Course summary

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This creative and challenging course provides an insight into the fast-paced and diverse world of media make-up and associated special make-up effects, offering a wide range of diverse skills and career options. The course aims to provide the opportunity to understand and experience as many of these as possible. The overall aims of the course are to provide a broad-based education in Media Make-up and Special Effects, to develop an awareness and understanding of the creative potential of contemporary professional practice in the field, and to develop an understanding of the different cultural, historical and commercial contexts within which creative professionals operate today. Areas studied may include make-up for film, television, theatre, fashion, editorial and special occasion, using both traditional and contemporary methods. Within special effects, casualty simulation, life casting, sculpting, mould making, and the manufacture & application of prosthetics may be studied. Hair work including basic dressing, period work, creative hair and postiche is also covered. The course explores the skills required by the Make-up Designer with an emphasis on research techniques and design planning. Work experience within the industry is an integral part, with students encouraged to obtain their own work as well as being supported by opportunities that come through the college. Our links with the British Youth Film Academy offers the experience of making short and feature-length films. You will build a portfolio of work, providing a strong basis for entry into the industry. Prospective students will be highly motivated and creative individuals with a genuine passion for the subject and industry. Reliability, punctuality and the ability to work to tight deadlines are also essential. The course covers a range of practices, including make-up for film, television and theatre. We also offer introductions to casualty simulations, historical/fashion make-up, postiche work, sculpting, casting, and prosthetic manufacture. The course is designed so that graduates are well placed to begin a career in make-up and special effects for film, television, theatre and professional photographic settings. This demanding course is delivered by academics with a wide range of relevant industry experience. *PLEASE NOTE - THIS PROGRAMME IS UNDERGOING PERIODIC REVIEW/REAPPROVAL IN THE 2019-20 ACADEMIC YEAR FOR DELIVERY FROM 2020-21. Periodic Review is a monitoring and review activity undertaken by all universities/colleges delivering HE programmes. Any changes to the existing programmes as a result of this process will be fully communicated to all applicants as soon as possible after conclusion of the reviews.

Course details


Level 4 Modules include: Studio Practice; Special Effects with Character Make-up; Prosthetics with Character Make-up; Contextual Studies 1; Personal Development and Planning. Level 5 Modules include: Advanced Studio Practice (Further Media Make-up / Postiche); Intermediate Prosthetics; Creative Make-up Design and Application; Portfolio Building; Contextual Studies 2; Professional Development. Level 6 Modules include: Advanced Studio Practice; Major Project; Professional Promotion; Critical Appraisal; Dissertation; Professional Portfolio.

Assessment method

An active and collaborative approach to learning is encouraged on this course. Students are encouraged to develop personal and professional independence, and maintain a self-managed approach to learning. This is facilitated through a project based approach to learning, which develops academic independence through a variety of individual research topics. As the course progresses, we place an increasing emphasis on independent learning and critical self-awareness, culminating in the production of a personal and professionally executed final collection and portfolio which demonstrates creativity and a range of appropriate professional skills. We aim to provide a friendly and enthusiastic environment for students. Students are encouraged to explore their individual creativity, and are supported through every aspect of the course, both personally and professionally. We provide a supportive backdrop to the student centred teaching and learning methods, which are designed to enhance personal development. Increasing emphasis will be placed upon independent learning throughout the course, via negotiated, self-initiated briefs. This independence ensures that you realise your individual potential and achieve your academic and future career aspirations. You will be assessed by a range of formative and summative assessments, which allow you to continue strengthening your skills as a Creative Make-Up Artist. The course is based both on practical and theoretical study, which will be reflected in the method of assessment; practical work will typically be assessed through the presentation of a body of work in portfolio or exhibition form, whilst written work will be presented in essays, reports or journals, including a Dissertation to be completed at Level Six.

Unistats information

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How to apply

Application deadlines

If your application is completed by the following date, it’s guaranteed to be considered:

15 January

*If you apply after this deadline, universities or colleges don’t have to consider your application if they’ve filled their spaces, so the sooner you apply, the better!

Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Year 1

Entry requirements

Qualification requirements

QualificationOfferFurther information
UCAS Tariff 80 points Three A levels or BTEC Extended Diploma usually in an Arts or Media subject, or Diploma in Foundation Studies (Art & Design and Art, Design & Media).
A level CCD Preferably including an Arts or Media subject.
Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (first teaching from September 2016) MMP Preferably in an Arts or Media subject.
Access to HE Diploma Award of a full Access Certificate (Art & Design) by a licensed Access Validating Agency.
Scottish Higher CD Preferably including an Arts or Media subject.
GCSE/National 4/National 5 GCSE English and Mathematics at grade C/4 minimum. Level 2 qualifications in Literacy and Numeracy accepted as equivalent.

As part of the application process, you will be required to attend an interview to which you should bring a portfolio of your work. Applications are encouraged though non-traditional routes. An appropriate level of study will be identified through a portfolio presentation and evidence of professional practice experience at interview. If you have already completed a Foundation degree or HND, you will be considered for direct entry to the appropriate level of the degree course.

Additional entry requirements


Candidates will be invited to attend for interview and be given an initial assessment.


Candidates will be required to bring a portfolio of work to the interview session.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

England £8750 Year 1
Northern Ireland £8750 Year 1
Scotland £8750 Year 1
Wales £8750 Year 1

Additional fee information

Bradford College is committed to delivering quality, affordable degrees. We work hard to cut the cost and not the corners on our undergraduate, postgraduate and professional courses. The tuition fee rate per year is fixed for the duration of the course providing there is no break in study. You will not be asked to pay these fees up front, as you should be eligible for loans to cover the tuition fees and assist with living expenses from Student Finance England. However, please ensure that you have made your application and secured funding for your course prior to registration.
Media Make Up with Special Effects* at Bradford College - UCAS