Birmingham City University

Graphic Communication with Foundation Year Birmingham City University Degree level: Undergraduate

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Course summary

TEF Silver

Birmingham City University has opted into the TEF and received a Silver award.

Find out more about the TEF.

Our Foundation course will focus on your personal and creative development based around a broad exploration of visual disciplines, leading directly to a BA course in the School of Art or the School of Visual Communication within the Art, Design and Media Faculty at BCU.

Working in a lively and energetic environment you will be given the freedom to expand your knowledge in conceptual development, practical skills and creative exploration underpinned by broad critical understanding and emerging theoretical principles.

You will work individually and collaboratively to develop a stimulating visual portfolio of work that evidences your enthusiasm for further study within a specific subject area.

BA teaching staff from across both schools will work with you throughout the course and you will have full access to all the University facilities.

Our diverse and exciting BA (Hons) Graphic Communication course is a must for anyone passionate about graphic design and looking to pursue a career in the industry.

Thanks to established links with major advertising groups, publishing houses and interactive design, the programme is structured to provide you with industry-quality skills in the fields of communication, branding and advertising design, both in print and online.

Lecturers are well placed to give commercially relevant guidance based on contemporary trends and historical contexts. We run an in-house agency that will prepare you for entering the world of design and your work experience will come from placements, studio visits and real life briefs.

What's covered in the course?

The Graphic Communication course expects you to stand out through your imaginative thinking, passion and commitment to new ideas and international perspectives. You will study a course that will test your design skills and help you identify the latest trends in design and communication on a world stage.

We need independent learners who are playful, full of passion and totally aware of the power they possess to facilitate changes, inform opinion and make their own mark in the creative industries.

In three years you will be engaged in all the practical and intellectual skills as leaders in an ever-changing commercial environment. Many graduates have gone on to become leaders in their field of specialism.

You will immerse yourself in our creative community, based at our City Centre Campus, where you will find screen-printing, letterpress facilities, Adobe software training rooms and studio facilities to enhance your design work.

You will engage with live project briefs with companies and partners, ranging from local to international, and your tutors are enthusiastic about their specialisms, fostering an invaluable knowledge transfer within the programme.

Your portfolio will be showcased to a number of potential employers through our home-grown and independent talent pool, We Grow Cherries, as well as during your graduate show. We run exciting trips to provide stimuli for your creative briefs, with cultural trips are planned for London, Berlin and New York, and these excursions will include visits to exhibitions, museums and studios visits.

Our end-of-year awards are sponsored and presented by high-profile names, with most award winners offered placements which have led to permanent employment.

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!

Application codes

You will need these codes when you add a choice to your application.

Course code W21F
Institution code B25
Campus name Parkside Building Campus
Campus code C

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

Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Foundation

Entry requirements

Qualification requirements

Qualification Offer Further information
UCAS Tariff 80 points
A level CDD Must be offered along with either one A-level or one BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/ OCR Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma qualification.
Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (first teaching from September 2016) MMP
Access to HE Diploma 60 credits overall - 15 credits at level 2 and 45 credits at level 3. Arts, Media and Publishing subjects preferred but other subjects also considered.
Scottish Higher Achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points achieved from either five Highers or a combination of two Highers offered with two Advanced Highers.Where only Highers have been taken a minimum of (CDDDD) are required. Where a combination of Highers and Advanced Highers have been taken you must achieve (grades of DD in two Advanced Highers plus grades of DD in two Highers).
AS 80 tariff points
Must include A Levels, BTEC QCF and/or OCR Cambridge Technical, to total 80 points minimum.
Extended Project Must be in a topic related to the degree subject being applied for.
Points achieved may be considered if applicant is falling short on A-Level points. Cannot be offered as a standalone qualification.
GCSE/National 4/National 5 Not accepted
International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme Obtain a minimum of 24 points overall. Students who do not complete the IB Diploma and who achieve the minimum of 11 points from two Higher Level subjects, will be considered on the basis of their IB Certificates.
Leaving Certificate - Higher Level (Ireland) (first awarded in 2017) Pass the Irish Leaving Certificate with a minimum of 80 tariff points, achieved in four Higher level subjects.
Leaving Certificate - Ordinary Level (Ireland) (first awarded in 2017) Not accepted
OCR Cambridge Technical Certificate Must be offered along with either two A-levels or two BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diplomas of 80 tariff points. Cannot be offered as a standalone qualification.
OCR Cambridge Technical Diploma DM Can be offered along with either one A-level or one BTEC Subsidiary Diploma Diploma qualification to achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points.
OCR Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma MMP
OCR Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma Must be offered along with either two A-levels or two BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diplomas of 80 tariff points. Cannot be offered as a standalone qualification.
OCR Cambridge Technical Subsidiary Diploma D*D* Can be offered along with either one A-level or one BTEC Subsidiary Diploma Diploma qualification to achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points.
Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma (first teaching from September 2016) MM Can be offered along with either one A-level or one BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/ OCR Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma qualification to achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points.
Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate (first teaching from September 2016) Must be offered along with either two A-levels or two BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/ OCR Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma qualification to achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points. Cannot be offered as a standalone qualification.
Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Foundation Diploma (first teaching from September 2016) Must be offered along with either two A-levels or two BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/ OCR Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma qualification to achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points. Cannot be offered as a standalone qualification.
Scottish Advanced Higher Achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points achieved in either three Advanced Highers or from a combination of two Advanced Highers plus two Highers. Where three Advanced Highers have been taken achieve minimum of grades DDD.  Where a combination of Highers and Advanced Highers have been taken you must achieve (grades of DD in two Advanced Highers plus grades of DD in two Highers).
Scottish HND Not accepted

In addition to qualifications, applicants will also need a good physical or digital portfolio.


English language requirements

Test Grade Additional details
IELTS (Academic) 6.0 with 6.0 in writing and no less than 5.5 in the remaining three skills.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

EU £9,250 Year 1
England £9,250 Year 1
Northern Ireland £9,250 Year 1
Scotland £9,250 Year 1
Wales £9,250 Year 1

Additional fee information

No additional fees or cost information has been supplied for this course, please contact the provider directly.

Provider information

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Birmingham City University
University House
15 Bartholomew Row
Birmingham
B5 5JU


Course contact details

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Course Enquiries Team