Birkbeck, University of London

Degree level: Undergraduate
Awarded by: University of London

Art History with Foundation Year

Course options

There are other course options available which may have a different vacancy status or entry requirements – view the full list of options

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 BA Art History degree helps you to develop a range of key skills, from critical thinking and writing, to historical research and visual analysis. We will explore the cultural and political contexts of artworks, buildings and exhibitions, and think more broadly about the role of images within society. Our modules make a creative and enjoyable use of the art galleries, museums and other facilities in London and beyond, including an exciting study trip abroad in spring. We teach art history as a rich and dynamic topic, encompassing architecture, installation, exhibitions, print culture and digital media as well as painting, sculpture and photography. You will be taught by experienced and skilled teachers who are also published writers of ground-breaking art history in periods from medieval to contemporary. On this art history degree, you will be part of a diverse, vibrant and stimulating student community in central London. Our evening teaching allows you to combine studying with work or taking up volunteering opportunities during the day, and the course will support you in making the first steps towards working in the arts. Alumni of the department now work in a variety of arts and art-related organisations in London and beyond, or progress to postgraduate studies. If you opt for the Foundation Year route, this will fully prepare you for undergraduate study. It is ideal if you are returning to study after a gap, or if you have not previously studied the relevant subjects, or if you didn't achieve the grades you need for a place on your chosen undergraduate degree. Highlights

  • Birkbeck was ranked as one of the top four universities in the UK for its Art and Design research in the 2021 Research Excellence Framework.
  • Established almost half a century ago, Birkbeck's Department of History of Art is an internationally respected centre for research and teaching. We offer information evenings for prospective students interested in our History of Art courses throughout the year. As well as regular gallery and museum visits, we offer an exciting study trip abroad every spring.
  • We have a state-of-the-art cinema and exhibition spaces, all housed in a historic building that was a former home to key members of the Bloomsbury Group, including the author Virginia Woolf and the artist Vanessa Bell. See a video about our home in Gordon Square.
  • As a student here you are encouraged to become involved in the lively research culture of the department through the Centre for Museum Cultures, the History and Theory of Photography Research Centre, the Architecture, Space and Society Centre and the Vasari Research Centre, which has pioneered the field of digital art history.
  • The department typically has some bursary funding available from its annual application to the Royal Female School of Art Foundation, which supports undergraduate students who are experiencing short-term financial hardship.
Careers and employability Graduates can pursue career paths in:
  • arts management
  • conservation and policy
  • education
  • marketing
  • publishing
  • the museums and heritage sectors
  • research and academia.
Jobs gained by some of our BA and MA graduates include:
  • Head of Learning, Design Museum
  • Curator, Schools Programmes, Tate Modern
  • Curatorial Assistant, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
  • Curatorial Officer, National Army Museum
  • Head of Campaign Management, Science Museum
  • Curator, Handel House Museum
  • Head Curator, National Maritime Museum
  • Director, Foundling Museum.

Course details

Modules

For information about course structure and the modules you will be studying, please visit Birkbeck’s online prospectus.

Assessment method

Short written exercises, essays which will develop in length and expected complexity as you progress through your studies, presentations.


How to apply

Application codes

Course code:
V352
Institution code:
B24
Campus name:
Main Site
Campus code:
-

Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Foundation

This course may be available at alternative locations, please check if other course options are available

International applicants

If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests. We also accept other English language tests.

Entry requirements

Qualification requirements

We welcome applicants without traditional entry qualifications, as we base decisions on our own assessment of qualifications, knowledge and previous work experience. We may waive formal entry requirements based on judgement of academic potential.


Unistats information

Operated by the Office for Students
60%
Student satisfaction
50%
Employment after 15 months (Most common jobs)
90%
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
International £16020 Year 1

Additional fee information

Students are charged a tuition fee in each year of their programme. Tuition fees for students continuing on their programme in following years may be subject to annual inflationary increases.
Art History with Foundation Year at Birkbeck, University of London - UCAS